Thursday, September 8, 2016

Upper Yosemite Falls hiking

For four months we had been planning to go to Yosemite National Park. This time our plan was not  just go to the Park, but to hike on a difficult trail. Anonymously it was decided  that we would hike on the Upper Yosemite Falls trail. There were many more difficult trails to hike. An avid hiker could find the Yosemite National Park  is very enticing. As the day was coming nearer other hikers in our team were more into lunch and dinner ideas rather than hiking. The Friday evening when we reached there , one by one hikers started withdrawing from the hiking next day. However ,Mr. Man was determined to go. I was little undecided, but Mr. Man didn’t let me stay at  the hotel. 


So, next morning around 8 in the morning we both started, leaving our kid with the others. He happily stayed back with them. Though we decided to start at 8 o’clock to avoid the sun, still we couldn’t do that. After reaching the trailhead around 9 O’clock, we started our hiking on a wrong route. Before starting I showed Mr. Man that people were going exactly opposite direction. As usual ,he didn’t listen to me. Standing at the point where the park shuttle dropped us we looked up and see the water was falling in full force from the above. First thought came into my mind, “Can I do it?”.  


The straight tall huge granite mountain was standing tall amid conical long fir trees. We walked few steps and ended up at a camp ground. Then he admitted that we had been walking on wrong route. Anyway, I showed him the direction and the board where it was written. The board showed that the hiking was 3.4 miles. However, I didn’t believe, because it usually take almost a whole day on a round trip. 

The Half Dome


We started our hiking on a very rough trail full of stones and pebbles. The trail was created with granite slab. That was not at all a plain trail. The starting point was very scenic. Then the actually path started. The granite slabs were kept  sporadically just to step on them to go forward. In fact, the starting was not at all an easy one. As soon as we start I realized why the trail was marked as difficult. The trail was going continuously upward in a zigzag way. Every parts of the zigzag was so steep that on every bend I had stop and breath , and sip water.


  We had only two bottles of water. Though the bottles were pretty big, still I had a fear in my mind that whether I could cover the whole trip with tow bottles of water. At every bend of the zigzag few granite slabs were stack on each other to gain the elevation. That was the difficult on every angle, because those steps were not pretty big. Some time I had to use my hands and legs to step up  .Those steps were very uneven. One step could be small, and the very next step could be high, depending on the size of the granite slab. Even somewhere putting the entire foot was difficult, as the slab was very narrow. However, the toil at every bend gave us rewards. As we going up we could see view of the mountain more and more. In the map the zigzag part was the small part of the trail, but going on that part was taking for ever. The main difficulty was yet to come. Not only the trail was full of stones and pebbles. On the top of that those stones were loose, and also full of sand. Many a times we slipped on the sands. It was going to be more difficult during come back time.  At every bend we stopped to see the view of the bottom. 


Every time whenever we were seeing at the bottom everything were getting smaller and smaller. We realized how fast were gaining heights. We managed to cross the zigzag way. Then the trail was quite easy. There were no stones, no pebbles. The trail was smooth and was going downwards. As the trail was going downwards, the walking was easy, and we gained some energy which we lost during the first part of the hiking. The map showed that we were very near to the falls. We were actually very near to the tail of the falls. After walking for half an hour when we just turned at a bend , we could see the roaring falls falling from way up. As an enormous stone was blocking the view of the falls from the path, we could only heard the sound of the falls before crossing the bend.


 I couldn’t compare the falls with any big falls like Niagara, but seeing the falls from near and getting the sprinkles of cold water from the falls gave a thrilling experience. After reaching there we understood that the miles which were written on the board at the starting point was the distance up to the bottom of the falls. Reaching the top we had to hike another three and half miles with elevation of another 1500 feet. Mr. Man was extremely motivated to reach the top of the mountain to see the source of the waterfall. 


The simple route was ended at that point , and again stone fused route started. The route became more difficult. Before starting again I asked my whether he was really ready to move further. He said, “Yes”. I understood nothing was going to stop him to reach the top of the mountain, even his body didn’t cooperate with him. We started hiking again. The route was so, so rough, I felt pain under my feet even after wearing special hiking shoes. As we gain some energy while coming down on the smooth path, walking was not that much hard in the beginning. After hiking over the stones and boulders again we reached another zigzag part of the route. This part more steeper than the beginning. On the top of the we were running out of our energy. Every bend I had to stop. Soon after I even started stopping 2-3 times on every part of the zigzag. I started telling him, that I wanted to give up. However, he didn’t let me to stop. At one point I just couldn’t walk anymore. He asked me to sit  under a shaded rock. He went on. After sitting for a while I felt better. Also, the breeze was so cold that I felt uneasy . So, I decided to walk. On the starting points of every bends, I thought of stopping , but ended up climbing next part. Then Suddenly I felt too tired. I started yawning too much. Soon I realized something was going wrong with me. Then I stopped and sit on a rock. I had no energy left on me to search for a little shade. Meanwhile I tried to search my husband, but I couldn’t see him anywhere. Suddenly I felt that my legs were not under my control, everything in front me started becoming hazy, and then for few moments every thing before my eyes went black. Still I tried to stand up to find out some shade. But the path was no steep and so rough, I couldn’t put my feet properly. I didn’t take any risk to climb down. I just sat beside the path, and tried to call my husband. Luckily on the top the mountain I got the network and managed to call my husband. He was about to reach the top. He missed that for me. He just rushed down. Then helped to sit on a shade. He fed me some oranges and water. After sitting for a few minutes I felt better. Then slowly we climbed down. It was thrilling hike, but I couldn’t feel happy. We were almost to reach the top, yet we couldn’t do that.  

7 comments:

  1. Wow...that was a pretty dangerous situation you got in. And all alone.... I love Yosemite but I pretty much just stayed down in the Valley and did flat, short trails!

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  2. These photos are simply astounding! God is an artist.

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  3. Beautiful photos! Glad you made it out ok.

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  4. Breathtaking falls! You both were so brave. Have a beautiful day!

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