A Gentleman and a Rogue

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Dems Bears in Those Woods Part 4 #yosemite #summervacation

Giant Sequoia in the Mariposa Grove


Our next to the last day in Yosemite found us exploring Wawona and the Mariposa Grove. Mind you, Yosemite is huge and this area of the park is in the very southern end. The wildfire, which entered the area, is in the northwestern part of the park near Hetch Hetchy, close to 40-50 miles away from Wawona and approx. 30 miles away from the Valley floor. In the 1900's, the Tuolumne River was damned up to create a reservoir. This reservoir, Hetch Hetchy, provides the water and electricity for San Francisco. It's hard to fight fires in this area so I hope all goes well.

Our touring tram 

We left our campsite early, at 8, to get parking at the Mariposa Grove and signed up for the 1st tram tour leaving at 9:30. The giant sequoias in the area are some of the biggest and oldest.  The Grizzly Giant, a gnarled, old, tall tree, is close to 2,000 years old. Some giant sequoias have fused together and some have been spilt at the base. One has been cut through the trunk so a horse and buggy could drive through. Surprisingly, this doesn't kill the tree. The sequoias have a reddish tannin that runs through it providing nutrients to every part regardless of the damage the trees receive. The trees in the grove stood as a proud testament of time. Just imagine – the Grizzly Giant was a seedling during the height of Rome. It's enough to give one shivers.  We saw some seedlings during the tour, near a cabin. They were as tall as the cabin, a bit slender, and were only 20 years old.

Baby Sequoias

 After visiting the Grove, we traveled to the Wawona Hotel. It's an old style hotel, Victorian in appearance. It was built to service the travelers coming to visit the sequoias. Teddy Roosevelt paid a visit to the hotel when he was president. There are rooms with baths and some without – you have to walk down the hall to use a community bathroom. At the Visitor's Center, the boys turned in their Junior Ranger books and raised their hands promising to do their best as Yosemite Jr. Rangers. We also toured the Thomas Hill studios.  Hill was a famous painter who did "The Last Spike," showing the last spike of the transcontinental railroad being driven in.

Wawona Hotel 

We ate lunch at the Wawona Hotel and I had turkey burger with a chili pepper, not my usual fare, but very tasty. (and pricey)

Being Yosemite Jr. Rangers

After lunch, we toured the pioneer village. There was a covered bridge, blacksmith shop, horse/mule stables, and even a jail. The village captured an authentic feel of the turn of the century in Yosemite.

At the Pioneer Village 

That afternoon we all took a dip in the Merced at our campsite. My DH cooked up a Dutch oven treat. Andrew and I visited "Campfire with a Ranger." It was a very relaxed day, but we learned a lot, especially about the sequoias.

In the Merced

So I gotta' ask – who's cooked in a Dutch oven camping style before? What's your favorite thing to cook up in a Dutch oven? 

12 comments:

  1. We used to make something called Girl Scout Stew in a big camp pot. Can't exactly remember, but it involved a meat and a couple of cans of soup.

    Loved the pics, Steph.

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    1. Maggie, that actually sounds good. Do you remember the soups you used? I'd be game to try it.
      Smiles
      Steph

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  2. Hubby does that all the time with the Boy Scouts. He's my camping authority. :) It is amazing how old those trees are and that they are still around. I wish more of the old growth forests were still standing! Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Melissa, I agree about the forests. Thanks for stopping by. How long has your husband been with the boys scouts?

      smiles
      steph

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  3. Great photos, Stephanie. It's been a long time since we were at Yosemite. Thanks for the memories.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. Yosemite was gorgeous when we were up there.
      smiles
      Steph

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  4. I've never been up that way so thank you for sharing the vacation with us. Hugs,Kathy

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    1. Kathy, it's a pleasure. Yosemite was a lot of fun and it was great to learn something new.

      Smiles
      Steph

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  5. Wonderful pics. Thanks for sharing! We are so lucky to have such a beautiful country.

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    1. I agree. I hope this recent fire is something the park can recover from fairly quickly.

      Smiles
      Steph

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  6. Great post and love the pictures. My hubby and I were scout leaders for many years but we didn't use a dutch oven very often. (Old pots and pans usually.) We did try a few variations of stew. The best would be with kielbasa instead of stew meat.

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  7. Hi Steph - I enjoyed reading all 4 of your Yosemite blog posts. I grew up near Sonora, where the Rim Fire is currently raging...and Yosemite was practically in my back yard. Had no idea how lucky I was to have been from there until I moved away. Your photos are beautiful...makes me homesick to see them. Ref Hetch-Hetchy, it is said that the Hetch-Hetchy valley rivaled the Yosemite valley in beauty - before it was dammed up. Dutch ovens - I was very active in Girl Scouts growing up, we used Dutch oven cooking a lot. I seem to remember making pineapple upside down cake in the Dutch oven... :) Great posts - I enjoyed them.

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