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Tuolumne Meadows Trip

Day 1 of 4

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Thursday, August 13th
Elizabeth Lake

Thursday morning, after Jennie somehow managed to stuff everything into the car, Jean, Jennie, Reza and I began the drive from the Bay Area to Yosemite. The temperature rose quickly as we entered the Central Valley along Highway 120. The car registered the outside temperature at 100 degrees. 105...110...115!!! Of course it probably wasn't really that hot, but we tried to stay inside the car as much as possible.

As we neared the Sierras, the temperature started to plummet. By the time we reached Yosemite, it was a comfortable 75 degrees outside. As we drove along Tioga Road toward Tuolumne Meadows, we were met with stunning views. But we didn't have time to stop. We wanted to get there and start our first hike!

The drive from the Bay Area to Tuolumne Meadows Campground took us about 4 1/2 hours. We stopped at the Tuolumne Meadows Grill and had lunch. Suggestion -- get the TMG Combo or the veggie burger -- the chicken I had didn't even taste like chicken.

After lunch we went to our campsite. I'd reserved two campsites, nearly 3 months in advance. Tuolumne Meadows is a huge campground, with over 300 sites, families everywhere... It was full when we got there, as I'm guessing it always is during the summer months (which is about the only time Tuolumne Meadows is open).

We set up our tents and then started our hike to Elizabeth Lake.

After we got back, Reza and I went to the store to pick up some ice for the cooler, a citronella candle to ward off the bugs, and cans of Off. I tried to find a battery for my camera, but they didn't have it. They suggested I try the Mountaineering School in the morning. Meanwhile, Jean and Jennie started dinner. We feasted on pesto pasta with turkey and vegetables.

After dinner we washed up (at the nearby bathrooms with cold running water and flush toilets) and put all the food away into the food storage locker. I called Lan and Angie, leaving them phone messages asking if they could buy me a camera battery. I was afraid the Mountaineering School wouldn't have it, and they'd be coming up on Friday.

We tried to start a fire in the grill, but it didn't last long because the rain had soaked the logs. Then it was off to sleep.

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