the daily dub

April 15th, 2010

Yosemite Trip Report

Posted by rdub in Trip Reports
Yosemite Falls

Yosemite Falls

Last weekend we travelled to Yosemite.  My uncle had an unused campground reservation that he emailed to me for the Upper Pines campground in the valley.  Right on the first loop (read: with the most sun), site # 9, we pitched our tent.

On this trip, I learned a valuable lesson: never pitch a tent under a tree when possibly expecting snow.

Snow!

Snow!

On Sunday night, at around 6pm, it began to snow. This was all fine and good because, frankly, we were all tired of the rain.  As it snowed, we ate kabobs and celebrated my Grandpa’s 85th birthday.  Congrats, Grandpa! The snow changed back to rain, then back to snow a couple of times before we headed back to camp.

We basically went straight to bed (because, what else is there to do when it’s dumping wet snow on you at 8pm at night?!?), listening to the silence of the snow falling… until…  WHUMPH!

“We’ve been hit!” I said to myself. A split-second later,  I realized my mistake: the tree above us was releasing the snow built up on its boughs, right onto the top of our tent.  “No problem,” I thought, as this tent has seen its share of shit-weather.  Well, it wasn’t a problem until there was enough wet-snow on top that the next “WUMPH!” broke a tent pole.  And… we had a candle burning (mistake #2).  The tent wall collapsed in, and if the candle handn’t have had a glass covering, we might have lit our shelter on fire in a hurry.

Luckily, there was no fire, but it was midnight, and I still had to deal with the problem of how to address the tree dropping bombs on us in a now-broken tent.

With a little beer-engineering, I shimmied up on the bear-box, tied a line as high as I could reach on a tree, borrowed a few tent-stakes from the tent to anchor the other end of the line to the ground.  The line was now directly over the broken canopy of the tent, about 2 feet above the rain fly.  “Perfect,” I thought, and went to grab a tarp.

With the tarp draped over the line, I borrowed yet more stakes from the tent, and anchored each corner down. I basically built a larger, stronger tent on the outside of the actual tent to protect us from the pelting snowballs falling from the tree.

Tent-crisis aside, I personally had a lot of fun in Yosemite.  That place always recharges my batteries, so to speak.  It was cold, though, and I think Athena didn’t like that much.  But she was a trooper, and made the best of things right up until the end.

Now that you’ve heard about my epic adventure, how about some photos?

Adventure, Ho!

Adventure, Ho!

Grandpa, King of the roost

Grandpa, King of the roost

Blue Bird looking for crumbs

Blue Bird looking for crumbs

Half Dome

Half Dome

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