Monday, September 15, 2008

Hiking Yosemite :: North Dome

Although I’m 26 years old and a native Californian I had never been to Yosemite National Park prior to this weekend. Given that it was Nick’s birthday we decided to do a little hiking outside of the Tahoe basin; leading us to Yosemite. Saturday morning we packed the car full of food, wood, and all the essentials one needs for “car” camping and in no rush we made our way down Hwy 395, along the Eastern Sierras.

Our plan or mission was to hike North Dome Saturday, camp at one of the sites at the valley floor, and then hike Clouds Rest Sunday before heading home. Well I recommend making reservations for a campsite if you plan on staying over Saturday night. All the campsites were full in the entire park, which forced us to drive home after only hiking North Dome.

North Dome is a pretty moderate hike and is only 8.8 miles round trip. It took Nick and I 4.25 hours to complete the hike, this includes stopping for pictures, water/food breaks, and breaks just to absorb our surroundings. (we hike at a pretty moderate/fast rate). For North Dome Park at the Porcupine Creek Trail head and following the trail in. The hike is semi exposed so make sure to wear sunscreen and bring lots of water.

If you’ve never been to Yosemite it’s a must see before you die type of experience. Once Nick and I reached the peak of North dome I was mesmerized by my surrounding. In one direction was Clouds Rest, another Half Dome, another the Valley floor, and another El Cap. There are so many hikes in Yosemite it's truly hard to decide which ones to do. It's a good thing that Yosemite isn't going anywhere anytime soon! If hiking doesn't interest you there are plenty of other recreational activities to partake in, such as biking, climbing, or kayaking.

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