Yosemite 2008-09

On the last weekend in September we headed up to Yosemite. We started out from Tuolumne Meadows, heading northwards to the Young Lakes. These are a series of three high altitude lakes, at around 10,000 ft. We camped there for two nights, and during the day left the trail to catch the views from the top of a nearby ridge, at around 11,000 ft. We didn't quite make it to either of the 12,000 ft peaks (White Mountain and Mt. Conness) that were in the general vicinity, but the view was spectacular nonetheless. And we made it back to camp while it was still light outside, another bonus.

Like our trip over Labor Day weekend, this also was right around the new moon (we planned this one that way). And we were blessed with nearly cloud free skies. So we got to see some spectacular stars, including a few shooting ones. Sorry, no pictures, you'll just have to use your imagination.

I've often been deterred from Yosemite due to the crowds. But the backcountry after labor day is a far cry from what I'd imagine the valley to be on a holiday weekend. We encountered few people on the entire trip, had middle Young Lake (perhaps even the entire Young Lakes area) entirely to ourself on our first night of camping, and went more than 24 hours without seeing a single other person, other than each other. It also probably helped that we drove to the park on Thursday night and started hiking on Friday, rather than waiting until the weekend.

A great trip overall, and we're already talking about some future trips to Yosemite in the hopefully not too distant future.

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