Stats to Date:
Total Miles:3495
Total States:5
Total Oceans Touched:1
Car Problems:1
Total Times Lost:4
Day: 8 Location: Carson City, NV (20 miles from Lake Tahoe)
God saw all that he had made -- and it was very good!
-- Genesis 1:31


Today began at 6am with a short three hour drive to Yosemite National Park. A "short three hour" drive. I know that sounds a little strange, but I've been driving so much over the past week that three hours feels like a trip to the grocery store. I really have built up some kind of "driving endurance" -- but I'm slowly running out of good listening material and I'm entering more and more mountainous areas where there is little radio and lots of challenging driving. So we'll see how well my "endurance" holds up.

If the Grand Canyon and Hwy 1 could be called beautiful, Yosemite would qualify as a glimpse of eternity. The main, tourist filled section of the park is a large canyon cut out thousands of years ago by Glaciers during the Ice Age. These glaciers left 8,000 foot shear cliffs, enormous water falls with "clouds" of rainbow colors at their base and deep valleys over endless space. It's freakin huge, with enough hiking space to get plenty lost. At one point, I had hiked a few miles away from everything, stopped and listened to absolute silence. No hum of florescent lights, computers or car engines... no air conditioning buzz or any other background noise. Absolute silence. How often can you find that in the real world? It was awesome.

Hiking around the park was not only very scenic, but good exercise. After stuffing my face with caramel popcorn, cookies and brownies (in addition to my regular tortillas with ham and cheese) for eight days, exercise is a good thing. Honestly, the only exercise I've gotten on this trip has been running from my truck to the convenience store and back again to stay out of the cold. Pathetic. I really can't wait to get to Colorado so I can do some skiing and get the blood flowing again.

I did have a small disappointment today... Yosemite was really amazing, don't get my wrong. But MOST of the park was closed due to the winter season. Much of the northern area of the park that I was told to visit by everyone I know, was closed to traffic. I left the park today with the half-baked feeling that I have to come back during the summer to get the whole experience.

The day ended with a drive to Lake Tahoe and Carson City through the Sierra Nevada, which gave me plenty of "practice" in driving down steep, icy and curvy two-lane roads in the dark. By practice, I mean it wore me out. Which is why I have very little motivation to type this journal entry right now -- so I'm probably going to reupdate it tomorrow evening when my brain wants to function. Tomorrow I'll be hanging out at Lake Tahoe and leaving mid afternoon to stop mid-way to Salt Lake City. It's good to get out of California, because as you can see from the top left picture, I was starting to identify with the treehuggers (Seriously, look how huge that tree is!) .Goodnight!
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