Yosemite: The One That Took My Breath Away (Literally)

If you want to try hiking sometime

If you love hiking 

If you’re in the vicinity

If you

Go to Yosemite.

It’s absolutely beautiful, and a car of four people was approximately $30 for the week! Before Yosemite, I had never gone hiking. Ever. The closest I got to hiking was climbing the stairs to get to N Seoul Tower in South Korea.

We stayed for three nights in August 2015. The first night was the night we arrived, so we went straight to bed. The next day, we woke up at 6AM to drive to Yosemite National Park (we stayed in an Airbnb). I was pretty ambitious. I thought we were going to climb three mountains that day.

We did one. The mountain was 7214 ft (2199 m) high, and a 4.6 mile hike up. I think it’s called the 4-mile trail.

I thought I was going to die. My lungs have never been more out of breath.

Before we talk about how all this was totally worth it… things I will do differently next time (& there will most definitely be a next time):

  • Stay for at least a week: one day was not enough. There is so much more to that park that I haven’t seen.
  • Stay in the park: or as close to it as you can get without being inside it. The drive there was not only long (2-3 hours), but it was also rough. We didn’t have data plans, and even if we did, there is no phone service up there. We had to follow a roadmap. The roads are unpaved and narrow, so turning around after a wrong turn was difficult and scary.
  • Try not to drive in the dark: the roads were winding and unlit. We felt pretty much blind. Our host told us that one of her visitors actually got lost and stuck in a dead end once for the entire night, and had to try again in the morning!
  • Bring lots of water: we each brought one bottle. The mountain did not have water fountains along the way. It was a 3 hour hike up. Even though we started at around 9AM, we were getting closer and closer to the blazing sun as we climbed higher… and it was the dehydrated I’ve been in my entire life.
  • Bring good company: this includes (but is not limited to) music.
  • Bring a camera: you will not want to miss out on an opportunity to capture this.

Driving through the park:

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Halfway up the mountain:

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We asked so many people how much longer until the top. We got varied answers: 20 minutes! 10 minutes! 45 minutes!

Luckily, there was a stop along the way called Glacier Point. I think some people just stop there and head back down. We stopped to take photos, but the views only motivated us to keep going.

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When we were almost there:

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I thought I was going to die. Every passing minute felt like I was getting closer to death. I needed water. But finally, we got to the top.

AND THERE WAS A STORE! I bought energy bars, ice cream, hot dogs, and water.

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Hallelujah.

After an hour of eating and taking photos, we made our way back down… believe it or not, going down was waaay worse. The path is not paved, so you have to be very cautious. The entire time. There is no railing! If you fall, you’re either dead or severely injured.

We took just as long to go down the mountain as we did to climb up.  Apparently, there was another trail down… but we obviously missed the signs 😛 . Hours dragged on, and the road below did not appear to be coming nearer to us. I kept slipping and thinking, “Welp. Goodbye world!”

But I’m alive and well, and I can’t wait to do it again :D.

2 thoughts on “Yosemite: The One That Took My Breath Away (Literally)

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