While the weekend tourists swamped Tuolomne Meadows I was poking around ghost towns and out in the open hills of the valley soaking in hot springs and admiring the views.
Watching dust devils in amazement:
I checked out Obsidian Dome just outside of Mammoth. Remnants of a volcanic eruption 500-600 years ago, the slow-moving flow left a pile of glassy obsidian a mile long and 300 feet tall. Fascinating.
The Paiute Native Americans used the rock for tools.
Once the weekend passed I headed into Tuolomne Meadows, the higher-altitude portion of Yosemite National Park. It was so crowded in that park over the weekend it grossed me out and I left for quieter places.
Tuolomne is really spectacular with granite domes and formations as far as the eye can see. The weather was perfectly cool. I found some nice high spots to take it all in.
Note the glacial erratic boulders sitting on top of this dome:
These are the views I love. Wide open:
A particularly lovely hike along the Tuolomne River brought me to a broad meadow where I enjoyed a picnic and worked on a little knitting project in peace and quiet.
The river narrows in spots, the flow quickens and you can see it’s carved out a path through the granite. Saw many perfect swimming holes but having no suit with and crowds present did not mix.
I was fortunate to have my first Yosemite rock climbing experience. That granite is superb!
I was sad to leave this area. Sure have a hankering for more. Tulomne will close soon since the road’s at such high elevation. But there’s Yosemite Valley to visit. The crowds should disperse soon. Hmmm…