Saturday, August 23, 2008

Day 6-7 Bear Trails

We were not able to post the last couple of days, because we were in the high country of Yosemite, and they don't have any internet access. On Wednesday night, we had another encounter with a bear! We could hear our campsite neighbors start banging pots and pans together, and yelling from all sides of the campground, so we knew we had a bear checking around for food.

After we went into our tent for the night, we heard rangers explain to the tent next to us that there was a "very large bear" in the area. Then we heard him say, "there he is!" and we realized that the bear was running full speed towards our tent! We heard him gallop by, but by the time we unzipped our tent, he was gone. The ranger said that the bear was about 400 pounds. WOW!

On Thursday we attempted to climb Mt. Dana, but we missed the trail by a long shot, and ended up following bear trails through the wilderness for about two hours. After realizing that we were nowhere near the trail, we gave up and spent the rest of the day at Tanaya Lake, soaking in the atmosphere. That night we enjoyed a fun campfire program at our campground, and learned all about bears, and hiking in the high sierras.

We finally found a ranger who explained where the actual trail for Mt. Dana started, so on Friday we finally were able to climb Mt. Dana. It was 3000 ft up to the top, and as one lady explained at the top, it was a puffer. When you climb up to 13,000 feet, the air is very thin, and it almost feels like you are drunk or something when you reach around 12,000 feet.

Once at the top, we signed the register, ate lunch, and enjoyed the view. It was amazing! We were the first people up there that day, so we got to watch all the other hikers come up the mountain after us. We were most likely the only people that day that had the peak to ourselves for about half an hour. It took us a while to get downhill though, because it's so steep. Mt. Dana was beautiful, and we got to see about a dozen Marmots!

We decided to put a cap on our trip and end it on Friday, so that we could beat the weekend Yosemite traffic. We had a great trip, with lots of excitement and adventure, and we can't wait to do it again sometime!

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