Yes … nine hours from Fresno to Modesto. These two cities are only 104 miles apart – a 1 hr 36 min trip for normal people according to our GPS. Extending that 1.5 hours to 9 was accomplished by taking a side trip to Yosemite National Park on the way. It was just on the way and begging for us to visit. So, we did.
I suspect for most folks planning a day trip to Yosemite is kind of lame, but we’re old, don’t climb up the sheer face of cliffs, and do not hike on trails that scale incredible heights or hike extremely long distances. We just enjoy looking at stuff, not interacting with it. A hike for us is climbing upstairs from the basement.
I gotta tell you that we had the best time ever looking at stuff. We even walked a lot farther than planned and enjoyed every minute.
From Fresno we took California Highway 41 to the park which goes through a very long tunnel that ends with parking lots on either side so folks can park and check out the incredible first view of el Capitan, Half Dome, and Bridalveil Falls.
Driving further in gave us better views.
We stopped at the chapel and took a photo requested by our friend Carolann.
The view from the chapel’s front steps.
Not all of the surrounding forest on the way in and out of the park is pristine green. Recent forest fires came close to totally devastating the entire park, but by some miracle that didn’t happen.
That’s a nasty photo, and typical of a great deal of the forest. Still, there are plenty of beautiful sights to take your breath away.
Leaving the park we took Highway 120 to Modesto. It reminded us a great deal of Highway 1 along the California Coast. Very curly cue for many many miles. It was a long day, but a really good one.
Tomorrow night we plan to be in Grants Pass for the last stop on this trip.