“I’ve gotta get out of here. Sink down, into the dark.” Dangerous – Big Data
Let me first say, that this trip was supposed to end in Yosemite National Park. We had planned on staying two days around the park and enjoying the nature. Well, unfortunately that didn’t happen and I’ll let you know why later.
We embarked on a BEAUTIFUL journey southeast of Penryn (where we were staying). I could not believe how beautiful those golden hills were! Just hills and hills of rolling golden grass.
These pictures just don’t do it justice. I often times felt like there was no point in making images of the scenery because a camera never captures the true essence of what you’re looking at. Sometimes I suppose you can get a good shot that will convey the message but rarely can it be felt unless you’re really there.
So we stopped along the route at a “rest stop”. This is more of a “sorry we can’t provide more but here’s a port-a-potty for you in case you need to pee” sort of deal. I wasn’t complaining! We seemed to have stopped off on a little speck of heaven called, “Mokelumne Hill”. The Mokelumne River is around 95 miles long and flows west of Sierra Nevada and ends up into the San Joaquin River.
I have never actually seen a river like this. The only rivers I’ve seen have been in North Carolina, Virginia, Illinois and the south. They’ve all looked somewhat the same: open and vast. This one had so many interesting visuals that it fascinated me!
We happen to stumble upon a man who had been panning for gold. HOW COOL IS THAT?! Seriously, this is California, the Gold Rush state! It felt like culture at it’s finest when I saw that man panning.
We talked to him for a while. He’s apparently from San Francisco but had moved to Jackson in order to survive! Apparently it was difficult for him to make it in SF with the way the economy had turned in 2008. So he said since then he’s been working part-time jobs and panning for gold was one of them. So I know what you’re thinking, you want to know, “Does he really get any gold?”. Well, the answer is YES! He actually does. Not a lot, but enough to, “supersize his fries at McDonald’s” he told us. This is a piece of gold he found that day. You can see it towards the edge of the bottom of the cup.
The man had been into a few confrontations or questionable circumstances while panning. He told us that he had been in a tricky situation once with a couple of guys who were threatening to take his gold from him. He told them they could try but that there was a pistol waiting for them if they did. Nothing ever happened. Usually the pistol talk does the trick I guess. LOL
He also said that the black dirt that you get after you sift through is worth a lot of money, and some people make good money selling that alone.
If I lived in California I could definitely pick up this hobby. It seems quite peaceful and might be enjoyable. And don’t worry, I’m packing heat too 😉
Yosemite National Park
I must preface this by letting you all know now that there are no pictures of Yosemite. *sighs*, it’s very embarrassing for me to admit but I know the questions would be roaming as to why we had not posted pictures of this absolutely beautiful place.
I am deathly afraid of heights.
The roads weren’t so bad going along the route to the park.
But you can see that they did start to go higher and higher. At some point, the roads went from OKAY to TRAGEDY and PETRIFYING DISASTER! It was like somehow we ended up at a 4,000 ft. elevation and I don’t remember how we got there. I started panicking and having a major anxiety attack. I felt frozen. I was so scared we would fall off the side that there was nothing else for me to do but cry and there was no way out of it. We had to actually go through a lot of the park in order to get out. It took us quite a while, but we did end up getting out of there. I do feel very guilty for taking that away from my parents. If it was something I could have controlled, believe me I would have. We didn’t get any pictures because it was just imparetive that we get out of there quickly. I think maybe it’s getting easier because since then we have been through a couple of other tricky spots and I’ve been okay.
After that, “experience”, we landed in a little town right outside of the park called, “Mariposa” which is the spanish word for, “Butterfly”. It’s a nice little town.
It’s nice, but it’s a MAJOR tourist TRAP! We went to a nice little restaurant called, “Charles Street Dinner House”. The name “Dinner House” doesn’t really appeal to me as it seems like a feeding trough for tourists. Name aside, it got great reviews on Yelp so we went.
The food was a bit pricy for simple meals but it was good. When in Rome…?
So in the end we found a nice place to stay and did see the scenery along the way. When I wasn’t crying it was absolutely beautiful! 🙂
Have any of you all been to Yosemite National Park or the places I’ve listed in this post? I’d love to hear your experiences or what you thought about them!