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Philosophers Stones; Yosemite National Park

Updated: Feb 26, 2020

It happened just as I imagined it would, as the sunset dipped below the horizon and tinted Half Dome in shades of rose and tangerine, a mother bear and her cub casually walk out of the forest to meander down to the Merced river in Yosemite Valley. What a fantastic way to end our first day exploring Yosemite, one of the USAs most famous parks.

Day 1: Glacier Point and Yosemite Valley

We spent a glorious 3 days exploring this much anticipated park and it’s really hard to pick a favourite place with each and every corner as magnificent as the last and so awe inspiring. The day we visited just happened to be our 10 year wedding anniversary and the 100 year anniversary of the end of WWI. Being Remembrance Day I couldn’t help thinking about life, love and times of great loss, hardship and sacrifice. The forest around us still wears the scars of recent wildfires and yet retains much of its beauty. And it reminded me of the symbol of the poppy & the duality of life; that there is no life without death; that without pain and loss we can never know true joy and happiness; that after great loss comes regrowth and regeneration.

Day 2: High Sierra

Like the forest, we all have scars, physical &/or emotional and we're all on our own journey of growth and enlightenment. We must remember to be patient and kind to our loved ones and give them the time and space they need to grow. We should be generous in our compassion and tolerance towards others as you don’t always know the scars people are carrying or how old or deep they go. And when you find someone who loves you scars and all, treasure it. When we married 10 years ago I married a man who gave me the strength and confidence to achieve my dreams and 10 years later he gives me the courage to live a life I'd never even dreamed of then. We challenge each other and love each other scars and all. Our Marriage isn’t perfect but I wouldn’t change it for the world.

So what are you waiting for? Get out there and explore, you never know what you might discover out there and inside your own heart and soul. The worst that can happen is you get eaten by a bear! And most of the time, the worst days turn out to be the biggest adventures and the best campfire stories.

Day 3: Hiking Vernal Falls

(2.6 miles, 1000 feet elevation gain, 600 stairs) we stumble on a mother bear and 2 cubs eating acorns. Can’t believe our luck

Where we stayed:

Fish Camp in Sierra National Forest, less than 5 miles from the South Entrance of the Park (FREE).

GnTonefortheroad Travel Tips:

1. Always carry bear spray when hiking in bear territory

2. Leave No Trace! We were so dismayed to find rubbish at the top of the Vernal Falls. If you pack it in pack it out! Take nothing but photos & memories. Leave nothing but footprints. Simple.

For all our up to the minute adventures follow us on facebook, instagram or twitter and now youtube @gntonefortheroad and feel free to like, share, comment or contact me for more info. So stay tuned as we #keepitreal #keepexploring #beyond40.

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