A drive through devastation of the 2013 Rim Fire, and an afternoon hike along the southern rim of the Yosemite Valley made up our first full day in Yosemite NP.
We drove Highway 120 toward the Yosemite Valley just after it reopened after being closed because of the Rim Fire. Started by a careless hunter, the fire rapidly grew to be the third largest fire in California history. The devastation was readily visible from the road for miles and miles. Smoke was still rising from tree stumps and smoldering roots. It was an astounding sight and it was hard not to reminisce how the landscape looked before. It will take decades to heal.
|Fire zone||Traffic along Highway 120||Devastation||Shadows of themselves||Memento||Symmetry|
|Fallen||Smoldering stumps||Hell in a forest|
|Speck of red||Black and red||Broken pair||Road crew|
After replenishing supplies in the valley, and a brief stop for a smoky look at Tunnel View, we set up camp at Bridalveil Campground. We hiked to Taft Point and then along the rim of the Yosemite Valley to Sentinel Dome.
|Mass shooting at Tunnel View||Review||Trail||Ferns and forest||Approaching Taft Point|
|Precipice down||Photographer||Really that far down?||Taft Point|
|Roman and Franta at Taft Point||Balancing pose||Split rock|
It was cloudy and smoky on Sentinel Dome, as it had been for much of the afternoon. Yet, it was impossible to ignore the draw of this place. We decided we would come back...
|Western sky||Puddles||Half Dome from Sentinel Dome||Groups||Red sky||Dipping sun|
|Loners on the rocks||Purple view|