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Park 9

Mono Lake interested me. Years ago, I’d seen a photo of the lake at sunset. The rock spires were indigo in the low light and silhouetted against the yellow, coral and scarlet water. Eerie and other worldly, the rocks resembled people wrapped in robes. In the daylight there is less magic and yet, the lake is good to see.

When taking a look beyond the lake, there is evident wildfire damage on the nearby mountains. Fire behaves as it will, destroying large swaths while leaving other areas untouched. It a testament to the Hot Shots that they saved a house, while everything around it was ashes. Fire is an unpredictable and voracious beast.

After Mono Lake, the drive into Yosemite through the mountain passes was breath taking. El Capitan and the Half Dome, impressive from a distance were yet another superlative close up. I wanted to join the spirit of John Muir and start walking and keep walking, and walking and walking. The mountains did indeed call with magnificent persistence. So much, so close together has collapsed the small talent I have and it seems there is nothing to be said. Indeed, not even photos come close to the experience.

Further into the park, we found water had been kind this year. Snow pack remained even in July and its melt supplied the Bridal Veil and Yosemite Falls. After many years of drought and visitors viewing a mere black stain on the rock, this year, the falls ran full and joyous. Bridal Veil, waters caught by wind, did blow out to form that veil of drops and a rainbow of mist.  Yosemite Falls likewise ran generously. From a view point high above, El Capitan, Half Dome and Yosemite Falls pose together for a final bow to tourist exiting the park. They deserve their standing ovation and endless encores.

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