For years, Rob’s family has gone on an annual camping trip to Yosemite Valley. Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to partake in this tradition in recent years because of our schedules so this year I wanted to make it happen. We started planning a year ago (reservations open a year in advance and fill up quickly) for a camping trip over Memorial Day 2016. We spent four nights and three full days enjoying the scenery and spending time with both Rob’s family and mine.
The trip flew by in a blur of steep hiking (Yosemite Falls and The Mist Trail), dueling camp coffee (Keurig in one, french press in the other), rain and thunderstorms (including while we were floating the Merced River), bonfires, s’mores, vodka soaked gummy bears (thanks neighbor Rose!), feisty squirrels, critters in our “cabins” (racoons, mice oh my!), stunning views, and massively starry nights.
We stayed in the Housekeeping Camp area which is comprised of 75+ “cabins”. I write “cabins” in quotes because while they have a concrete floor and three walls made of concrete, the door is simply a canvas curtain. Each site has a canvas roof that covers both the sleeping area and the outside, semi-private, eating area. Inside they are equipped with one metal shelf, one set of twin bunk beds and one full size bed. There is electricity at each site, and the running water and bathrooms are a short walk away. You are not fully “roughing it”, but you are also not living in the lap of luxury either.
Rob and I applied for the pre-season Half Dome permits lottery in March, and each of the daily lotteries while we were in Yosemite but had no luck. While I am not a huge fan of intense hikes, climbing Half Dome is something I have decided I want to do before we have kids. Next year we plan to apply for a bunch of different weekends to up our chances of winning.
Memorial Day Weekend marked the beginning of a summer full of traveling and we couldn’t have asked for a more fabulous start! We’ve already started planning for next year and hope that we can keep participating in this tradition for years to come!