A week and a half ago Ivy and I went to Yosemite for a long weekend with my sister Melissa and her husband Mark. Yosemite is one of our favorite places and Ivy and I have been there about twice a year for the past 5 years. We've gone every season before except the fall and so it was a real treat to experience the beauty of the changing colors. It was Mark's first time there (Mark's from Oregon and he and Melissa live in Portland) and fun seeing things with his fresh perspective.
We stayed in a wood cabin in Curry Village and enjoyed the relative luxury of this compared to the heated tent cabins that Ivy and I stayed in a couple times in the past.
The first day we hiked up the Vernal Falls trail and then over to Mirror Lake and the Ahwanee Hotel in the Valley. I love the Ahwanee and probably glorify it too much in my mind. It's luxurious in a huge log cabin kind of way. There's always a massive roaring fire and the dining room is filled with big white candles on every table and there are huge windows everywhere to see the sides of Yosemite. Note: we've never actually eaten or $tayed there, but our plan is to go for our 10th anniversary and hopefully also experience their very famous "bracebridge" Christmas dinner one year.
Also, on that first day as we were finishing up our hike we saw a black bear calmly finishing up his own hike in the woods. Mark and I got pictures of it.
We always love hanging out with Melissa and Mark and are extremely glad we get along so well and enjoy doing lots of the same things. (Several years ago we went with them to the San Juan Islands off Washington and stayed in a cozy rustic cabin there. It was awesome). In fact Mark and Melissa are one of the big reasons we're planning on living most of the time we're in the US up in Portland, where they're at.
Here's some pictures of Yosemite.