Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother’s Day in Yosemite

Beautiful.  Magnificent.  Amazing.

Honestly these words don’t come even close to describing Yosemite.

Imagine driving through a tunnel nearly a mile long, and this is the first thing you see when you exit the tunnel.

Weekend trip to Yosemite

Let me tell you, it is like hearing angels sing.

That is Yosemite.

We drove up to the park on Friday to spend Mother’s Day weekend there.  Our first hiking stop was Bridalveil Fall.


It was an easy 1/2 mile hike without a whole lot of elevation gain.  The kids loved being at the bottom of the falls and feeling the mist.  There were a ton of people there though, so we decided to walk back down the trail a bit to grab a family photo so we wouldn’t be photobombed by the other 100 or so people there.

Yosemite with Kids

Next we hopped back into our car to go to our next stop.  Along the way we just had to stop for pictures at the meadow with Yosemite Falls in the background.


I even handed my camera over to Trenton so he could snap a picture (or 30) of me and Jarrod.


Not bad for his first try with my camera!

We hopped back in the car and went on to the parking lot nearest to our next hike – Mirror Lake.  We hitched a ride on the shuttle bus to the trailhead so that we wouldn’t add an extra 2 miles (1 each way) to a hike that was already going to be 2 miles roundtrip from the trailhead.

The trail to Mirror Lake was a wide paved non-driving road.  The last 1/4 mile was a little steep to the lake, but not too bad.  We all survived.  The pretty views helped.


And this, my friends, is why it is called Mirror Lake.

Hiking in Yosemite: Mirror LakeDSC_1673_1

After walking back down to the trailhead and catching the bus back to the stop near our parking lot, we headed out of the park to our cabin to call it a day.

Saturday morning after making breakfast in our cabin, we headed back out to the park.  Our cabin (Yosemite Pines) was 22 miles to the park entrance.  What I didn’t realize when booking was that it was another 24-25 miles from the park entrance to Yosemite Valley.

But we were afforded with gorgeous views on our way through the park.


We made it to the valley and then drove another 30-40 minutes to Wawona on the south side of the park.

Our first hike of the day was Swinging Bridge.  We loved this trail.  It was very remote and not one of the more popular ones in the park.  The trail was unpaved, and we only ran into about 10 other people while we were out.  There was little to no elevation change, but there was some rock scaling to get down to the bridge.

DSC_1738_1DSC_1730_1 DSC_1744_1

The bridge was a true swinging bridge.  Over a rushing river/creek (not really sure which it was).


Everyone was ready to cross!

Yosemite with kids
Everyone is looking at the camera and smiling!  That’s a first!

Once we crossed the bridge, we climbed onto some rocks to eat lunch with a view.

Check out how she eats her sandwiches.  It totally says something about this crazy girl’s personality!

After hiking back across the bridge and back to our car, we drove down the road a couple miles to the Yosemite Pioneer History Center.  None of the buildings are open to the public, but we could peek in the windows.  We also walked/balanced across a covered bridge to check out some old wagons.


After we were done exploring the pioneer center, we drove back up to the valley to check out the iconic Yosemite Falls.


We hiked the short, paved, very crowded trail up to the lower falls.  It was really gorgeous, but some were not impressed…


They did like the walk back to the car though.


We grabbed dinner on our way back to the cabin, and then it was time for dessert.  We had a couple of excited kids!


This morning we made breakfast again, packed up, and walked over to the petting farm that was across from our cabin before heading back home.


We loved our cabin, but if there is one thing I could have changed, it would have been to not be housed directly across the driveway from our alarm clock.


He went off at 6:30 every morning…

Yosemite National Park was the perfect place to spend a perfect Mother’s Day weekend!  Happy Mother’s Day to all of you special mommies out there!


I planned our hikes using this Where to go in Yosemite with Kids series on Go Explore Nature.  It is a great resource to anyone – not just those with kids.


Jen said...

What an amazing Mother's Day!! :)

Jessie said...

Absolutely stunning. Yosemite is on my bucket list of places to visit and it looks as if it won't disappoint! Your family looks like they enjoyed themselves very much. What a wonderful mother's day weekend!

Jenn said...

Those views are stunning! Love Mirror Lake and the view as you come out of the tunnel. Happy Mother's Day!

Karen said...

Oh my goodness - these pictures are amazing! What a beautiful place to spend Mother's Day weekend.

Karen said...

Oh my goodness - these pictures are amazing! What a beautiful place to spend Mother's Day weekend.

Rachel Ross said...

Wow, gorgeous photos! Looks like the perfect place to spend Mother's Day!

Mrs.B said...

Soooo beautiful! What an amazing way to celebrate.

Shannon said...

These photos are breathtaking.

Seems like the perfect way to spend a mother's day!!

amominneedofadvice said...

I want to go to Yosemite SOOOOOOO bad, especially now that you have captured these great moments with your family. This is a great post! Great pictures! I'm so glad I found you at mommy moments link up.

Alix lion said...

Really beautiful photographs! I love it. All images remind me my past when I visited the Yosemite with my parents. Now after review your post I really wish to see the Yosemite falls soon. That's the reason I'm looking forward los angeles to yosemite tour. Glad to hear a lot from you soon. Keep on sharing!

Naomi Liz said...

So beautiful! Oh, how I love mountains and waterfalls and deep woods....Looks like a fun trip!