None of us had a good night sleep. Jose, Beth and I all had a restless night troubled by being too warm or too cold and Shintaro was kept up by the neighbors staying up laughing until late. We showered, had some cereal and got ready to set out.
Our first real day in Yosemite, we planned to catch a 9am photography walk, after which I was do an Ansel Adams workshop, and the others would either join me or do something else of their own choosing. Leaving the cabin it was 46F outside. On our way we passed through a tunnel, and on the other side was an amazing view of Half Dome and El Capitan lit by early morning light. We didn’t have any time to stop for a photo; we had 30 minutes to park and find our way to the Ansel Adams gallery so we could register for the tour. When we arrive we found that it was actually starting from the Park’s hotel! We had to quickly make our way down the road and caught the group right as it was starting. The tour was fun, but after doing the hour a half version of the tour it was kind of clear there wasn’t all that much down on the valley floor this time of year that would be amazing to shoot, and everyone wanted to do other things. We decided to get some food and go on a few little walks around the valley and a trip to the information center. At the Visitor’s Center we learned that there would be no snow shoe hikes as we kind of surmised from the lack of snow. Also the half dome final section is closed for the winter.
We decided to make our way to the Yosemite Falls. The path was wide and FILLED with people. We stopped along the way to poke around in a cave. Somehow Shintaro ended up above us before winding his way down. It was like a playground! Reaching the falls nearby we see many people were clambering over the rocks, and decide to join in. It took a good while to find our way to the top, but we eventually made the bottom pool of this massive three tier waterfall. The view was really unique and kind of made better by the difficulty to get to the top. On our way back to the main path we ran into a family of deer: a mother and two fawns. I had a very slow telephoto lens and a tripod and got a few shots before they crossed the path and went off into the woods. We decided that it was time to go back to our cabin and relax.
Tonight was Jose’s night to cook, and he made us some chiliquiles. I scarfed them down, tasty. We ended the night with a bit of Pinot Noir and a bit of playing this card game called Set.