Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Last Week in Yosemite (day 2)

Tuolumne River
Last week was one great time in Yosemite after another. I'm starting this series on last Tuesday's adventure with Charlotte and Dave Hoffman because I've not finished the painting I started on the previous Monday with the YWA plein air painters at Wawona's Swinging Bridge.

Tuolumne River Bed Rock
Last Tuesday neighbors and talented artists Charlotte and Dave invited me to join them in a high country hike and photo shoot. We settled on exploring the Pothole Dome area at the west end on Tuolumne Meadows. An area none of us had yet to explore.

It sounded like a fun adventure and it was. We started by having a late lunch a bit off the trail and a little ways up the dome. The distant views were a bit hazy because of the lightning fire that the NPS is letting burn over by Badger Pass.  Though we were a good distance away the wind was blowing our direction and the hint of fsmoke was in the air.

After lunch Dave led the way across the dome headed toward the river. Charlotte and I lagged behind  when all of a sudden she says, "Terry stop!"  Right between Dave and us were some deer heading up the Dome.

The Buck does on stop here.
We immediately got our cameras out to try to capture some deer pics as they moved up. Dave had his back to them and had no idea how close they were.Yelling to him would scare them off so we kept silent. It was a pretty good size group and mostly bucks. One of the last to cross our path was a huge buck. I'd never seen one with so many points on it's antlers. Wish I could have gotten a better shot of him.

I think Dave might have been a little bummed he missed them. He most likely would have gotten a much better pic.

Soon Dave had found us a good trail and we headed along side Pothole Dome hoping to reach the river. Eventually we found it and were rewarded with some beautiful high country scenery.

Back on the Dome near the end of our return hike Dave asked if we wanted to go to the top. At this point my disgruntled legs were exclaiming, "no thanks". My heart and lungs were in total agreement with the legs.

Charlotte was also ready for a rest so we decided to sit and enjoy  the amazing views and leave Dave to explore the top. We'd meet him back later at the car.

This was the evening shot of two distant domes from our spot on Pothole. Sadly there weren't any clouds just some hazy smokey air.

Instead of continuing across the granite dome Charlotte and I walked down to the meadow's edge to check it out. Not a lot of flowers yet but there were some starting to show. Found a nice group of Indian Paint Brush and a lazy creek as we walked around toward the car.

A great time with great people.  Looking forward to hiking this area again.

Thanks Charlotte and Dave.

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