The drive to Yosemite National Park from San Francisco is just under 4 hours. It took us 6. I don’t know when the kids are going to get the message to go to the bathroom before they get in the car. It seems as if we stop every 20 minutes! We stocked up on gas and food because we didn’t know what we would be able to get when we were in the park, and arrived for our day at Yosemite at 3pm.
We met at the top of the hill with an amazing viewpoint of Bridalveil Fall for family pictures (my brother in law photo-bombed… I’m leaving it in there), and decided we would walk to the lower Yosemite falls trail which are the biggest falls in this part of the states.
I carried Sam in the sling because I didn’t know if the walk would be pushchair friendly, but it was paved and would have been fine with the pushchair. We didn’t walk very far before we got to the bottom of the waterfall. There was so much spray because the water had fallen from such a great height, the kids enjoyed to stand in the spray, while I cowered as I passed, trying to keep Sam dry.
When we passed to the other side of the waterfall (the trail is a loop), we let the kids go and climb a few trees – as long as they stayed away from the rapids running through the middle of the woodland. While I was standing watching, a lady came up to me to admire Sam. She didn’t speak English so I don’t know what she was saying. My sister said “that would make a great photo!” (Meaning me and Sam with the trees in the background) so she said to the lady “do you mind if I take a photo?” And the lady stood next to me and posed! Sarah took the photo and the lady thanked her. While this was happening, the lady’s large group had all joined us and they were all entertaining Sam, trying to make him smile, and they all started taking pictures of him (and me!), and standing next to us to pose for pictures together. It was so awkward for me and I didn’t know how to leave! My group had a laugh about it, taken some photos and walked on, while I was left alone to insist that I had to leave too.
Originally weren’t planning on spending 2 days at Yosemite, but because we had arrived so late in the day and there was so much to do, we returned the morning of the next day to do some more exploring.
We started at the car park to Bridalveil Fall. The walk to the waterfall was short and paved so we had the babies in their buggies. It was extremely busy, whereas the rest of the park was very quiet so this was obviously a popular site. The waterfall was amazing and beautiful, and the spray was strong. I refused to pose for any pictures at the bottom of the Fall after having straightened my hair, it would have been frizzy within seconds! No thank you! I’m not vein but anyone with curly hair will understand. Plus there were so many people there all fighting to get photos, we had a quick look, we were satisfied that we saw it and instead of returning to the car we found another path to walk down and we were rewarded by a great view of Half Dome.
We did a couple of other short walks in the afternoon, which were not as child-friendly as we were expecting (Mirror Lake was one), and a lot of the things we wanted to see were closed for the season, but Yosemite is breathtakingly beautiful and we loved exploring by car and by foot.