Yosemite National Park & Mariposa, California

Yosemite National Park & Mariposa

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Yosemite National Park & Mariposa

Places Visited:
California: Yosemite National Park & Mariposa

Monday, June 6: High Sierra RV-Park Oakhurst, California: $25.20 FHU-50amp. Paved interior roads with grass/gravel sites. Free WIFI N37° 19.887' W119° 38.810' 559-683-7662

View from Yosemite Valley in Yosemite National Park California










Flowers and tunnel in Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park California



From purple flowers to tunnels Yosemite was visual overload.





Yosemite Valley Gift Shop


To top off the Yosemite experience Joyce got to stroll through the gift shop where I snapped this pic of her with a bear.




Yosemite Village in Yosemite National Park, California





We did the normal tourist things while in the valley like walk in the meadow and along the swollen river. We stopped and gazed up at all the waterfalls, and there are a lot of them this year with all the snow melt. We were told by people that frequent Yosemite that they had never seen so much water pouring over the falls. They were all amazed, while we thought it was normal.

Yosemite Valley actually has the three tallest waterfalls in North America dropping into it: Yosemite Falls at 2,425', Sentinel Fall at 2,000' and Ribbon fall at 1,612'. It also contains the largest rock monolith in the United States in El Capitan at 3,593'. Tioga Pass at 9,945' is the highest road in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

When walking in the meadows we can see grass and debris hanging in trees a long way from and above the river providing evidence that earlier this year even more water was flowing through here.

We ate lunch at the lodge and rode the free bus around. Actually, the park bus is a good way to get around in Yosemite Valley.

We exited the park on CA-140 that wends its way into Mariposa where we connected with CA-49 (the 49'er route) that took us south back to Oakhurst. CA-140 didn't have any hairpin turns either but it did have some "kickin" 9% grades as it first climbs out of Yosemite Canyon then literally falls to Mariposa and the San Joaquin Valley. It seemed like all I had to do was downshift and hold on as we flew down the grade from Yosemite. There were some curves in the road but most could be negotiated at 60-mph. If your RV has the HORSEPOWER there is no reason you can't drive it along CA-140 into Yosemite.

Compared to the south entrance to Sequoia on CA-198 out of Three Rivers both of the roads into Yosemite are "pieces of cake".

Tuesday, June 7: High Sierra RV-Park Oakhurst, California: $25.20 FHU-50amp. Paved interior roads with grass/gravel sites. Free WIFI N37° 19.887' W119° 38.810' 559-683-7662

We visited Mariposa today. Mariposa is an old historic town very important in the early history of California. Colonel John Freemont is the "father" of Mariposa. You will recall that Colonel Freemont is the Army Officer that led exploratory missions into California in search of routes over the Sierra Mountains. Kit Carson was his guide on at least 2 of Freemont's 4 missions. John Freemont ran on the Republican ticket for President but was beaten by James Buchanan who served between 1857 and 1861.

John Freemont was a big name in Mariposa back in the 1850's during the height of the gold rush. On one of his scouting missions to California he had given $3,000 to a man with instructions for him to purchase land for him. When Freemont returned to California to settle his land in the early 1950's he found that the man had not purchased the land as instructed but had instead purchased 44,000 acres south of the Merced River. Anyway, John was furious that the man had not purchased the agricultural land as instructed -------- that is he was furious until gold was found in the area. Freemont imported Mexican miners who made him a millionaire within a few short years. By now you have put two and two together and realized that the man had purchased property for Freemont that contained the "Mother Lode".

In Mariposa today we visited the California State Mining and Mineral Museum housing the State's official collection and as such a premier attraction. It is located at the Mariposa Fairgrounds on CA-49 one mile south of town.

The Mariposa Fair Grounds is also an RV-Park. There isn't a phone number that I could find. The RV-sites operated strictly on the "honor" system. They have sites with hookups available. All you do is drive into the parking lot at the Fair Grounds and look for the sign, then fill out the card and put your money in the envelope provided and drop it in the box. The sign says some one will be by to check. You know as much as I do now.

The next place we visited was the Mariposa Museum and History Center located in town. This was a really good museum for a small town. It chronicled Mariposa's grand historic role as the site of the first hard rock mine in California, on John C. Fremont's property.

The museum featured hand written letters written home by miners and others to explain how things were in the 1850's. Those reaching this area made the trip on sailing ships from the east coast to the coast of Panama where they disembarked and walked across the mountains to the Pacific where they caught another ship up to San Diego or San Francisco. One of the most detailed letters was that of Fremont's wife who wrote home to describe her journey across the mountains of Panama from the Atlantic to Pacific Oceans.

Until next time remember how good life is.

Mike & Joyce Hendrix

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