My First Hike in Yosemite

Miya

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Today - 09.16.18: I only had Sunday free and needed some hiking time. Pretty much the photos are the same views, just different lighting, so just attaching highlights.

https://evermoremoments.smugmug.com/Four-Mile-Trail

I chose the Four Mile Trail (used to be 4, now actually 4.6) in Yosemite National Park, CA. The TH starts in Yosemite Valley (4000 ft) and brings you up to Glacier Point (7200 ft). I debated on just driving to Glacier Point, because I am not fond of crowds and wanted to see the sunrise. I ended up deciding against it though, and started hiking at 05:45. Of course, I was so excited and only got a couple hours sleep, but I get determined to the point of recklessness sometimes. Two other men, who didn't speak English, started at the same time, and we played tag for about 2.5 miles.

I tried to make sure I was mentally prepared for the constant uphill and switchbacks, and I think I did pretty good, but I will be sore tomorrow.

I have only ever been to Yosemite one other time, it was a beautiful fall day the first day and I woke up to a car covered in snow the next. So I was a little disappointed at all the haze (there was another wildfire going on during my visit), sunshine and dried up waterfalls. I can't wait to head back when there are clouds in the sky and less people. Still thrilled that I went and feel a little proud, like I always do after I push my body.

It was pretty neat getting to see the sunrise on the Valley and then it looking completely different on the way back.

My knee hates stairs on trail, actually stairs in general. Heading straight up.

Four Mile Trail.jpg


Just getting started.

Four Mile Trail-5.jpg


I kept having to pee so much on this trail! It is so hard to find a place to go when you are going up and people can see you from above. To top it off, the bathrooms weren't open once I made it to the top. :facepalm: I didn't make it to Glacier Point until 09:15. The place was packed! I tried to have lunch, was surrounded by wasps and decided to head back down at 10:00.

Four Mile Trail-16.jpg


Four Mile Trail-18.jpg


Four Mile Trail-22.jpg


I don't think I had even gone a mile when I was cantering down a switchback, I turned the corner and BAM, BEAR! She was less than 15 feet from me. I skidded to a halt, while hissing "OH S**T*". I think she thought the same thing and whipped around to go back down the trail. Then she remembered there was a group of 4 stalking her in the opposite direction. (I don't think the group spoke English and they seemed annoyed that I had disturbed the moment.) This group was being idiotic, because when I took a few steps forward to continue down the trail, "OH S**T" again, a cub. They knew the cub was there and they were trying to take pictures and get real close.
Momma ran up and went behind her cub, which I thought was weird. I walked backwards / sideways to keep an eye on them and they just watched me. I put my camera up in the air while walking and hoped that I managed some shots.
The group of four continued to creep up the trail and stand real close to the pair. I did not have my 18-55 lens zoomed at all. They just stayed very close to the trail. Not gonna lie, was pretty scared, but enjoyed lots of adrenaline after I walked away alive. She was a lot taller than the last bear I saw, she went up to about my waist.
I hope I always remember the moment. I was so close to the mom and got to see the look of distress on her face, probably what my face looked like. It was incredible.
Even though Yosemite has a NO BEAR SPRAY rule, I brought it anyways and am glad I did! I don't think I would have been quick enough to use it if she had decided to charge, I was way to close. But you never know what could happen.

Find the cub.
Four Mile Trail-24.jpg


Four Mile Trail-25.jpg


Four Mile Trail-26.jpg


I passed dozens of people on my way down and warned them. Most of them didn't speak English, but they seemed to understand 'Bear' if I included some hand gestures. Haha I made it back to my car at 12:00, luckily the guy behind my car left me lots of space to get out, otherwise I would have been stuck in Yosemite. The guy in front was right on me.
Sorry, I feel like I talked a lot this report. Thanks if you hung through!
 
Last edited:

Titans

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Thanks for sharing- great photos! It took me a little to find the cub in the first photo. I wondered, why they were "just eying you" and nothing more happened, so I looked it up....: It's a Black Bear in Yosemite (regardless of it's brown color) and I believe that they very rarely respond like mother grizzlies, which have very strong maternal protection instincts.

While searching, I saw this very disturbing fact: 9 black bears have been hit by cars (just this year) in Yosemite.
https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/nature/bears.htm
https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/nature/bear-management.htm
https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/bearfacts.htm

Picture of the "Red Bear- Dead Bear" NPS signage is from the National park website, it is NOT my picture- hope I don't get in trouble for copying it!)

 

Miya

Because I am able.
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Joined
Dec 31, 2017
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Thanks for sharing- great photos! It took me a little to find the cub in the first photo. I wondered, why they were "just eying you" and nothing more happened, so I looked it up....: It's a Black Bear in Yosemite (regardless of it's brown color) and I believe that they very rarely respond like mother grizzlies, which have very strong maternal protection instincts.

While searching, I saw this very disturbing fact: 9 black bears have been hit by cars (just this year) in Yosemite.
https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/nature/bears.htm
https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/nature/bear-management.htm
https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/bearfacts.htm

Picture of the "Red Bear- Dead Bear" NPS signage is from the National park website, it is NOT my picture- hope I don't get in trouble for copying it!)


Yeah I think we only have black bears in CA (not sure). I thought they can get territorial too, good to know! I will still keep my distance though.

They had those signs all over, it reminded me to slow down, I tend to speed.
 

Rockskipper

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If you're in an area where bear spray is illegal or you can't afford to buy some, just carry a few packs of hotdogs. Open them before you start your hike so you're ready, and if you see a bear, throw a package at them and run like h-e-double-hockeysticks.

Or so my buddy Chris once told me, though I haven't seen him around for years.
 

MikeM

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Why is bear spray banned in Yosemite? I've never heard of that. I know it is strongly encouraged in Glacier and Yellowstone.
 

Perry

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Wow how exciting! I’m kinda jealous.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Miya

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If you're in an area where bear spray is illegal or you can't afford to buy some, just carry a few packs of hotdogs. Open them before you start your hike so you're ready, and if you see a bear, throw a package at them and run like h-e-double-hockeysticks.

Or so my buddy Chris once told me, though I haven't seen him around for years.

I like this, although I think the hot dogs might attract a BUNCH of bears and they won't want to share haha
 

Miya

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Why is bear spray banned in Yosemite? I've never heard of that. I know it is strongly encouraged in Glacier and Yellowstone.

It is considered a weapon. You can't even bring pepper spray. I am sorry, I am such a stickler for the rules, but I have a fear of being eaten by a mountain lion (I guess any animal, but a mountain lion ESPECIALLY) and being attacked by a human.

https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/weapons.htm

1537229961113.png


It is unfortunate, because I noticed another park near by adopted the same idea. :( I would rather live though and I will pay the fine if it comes to that.
 

Miya

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Californians can't be trusted with such high caliber weapons :)

Lol I kinda understand, like there is a good chance I could spray myself, (possibly accidental civilian fire) but I accept the risk to myself and responsibility for my actions! Haha
Oh snap, I forgot I actually know someone that happened to! She fell down the side of a hill and had her spray out and unlocked. She sprayed herself with the spray and broke her leg. Luckily she was found the next day.
 

Rockskipper

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Oh my heck! You could pee your pants too but are we going to ban that too?


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There's a lobby group that's pretty effective on that front, making sure it stays legal. They represent a product you can find in the older-adults aisle in the market. :rolleyes:
 

Miya

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There's a lobby group that's pretty effective on that front, making sure it stays legal. They represent a product you can find in the older-adults aisle in the market. :rolleyes:

I could have went for that, instead of having to pee out in the open on the side of a very popular view in Yosemite. People have binoculars and expensive camera lens haha
 
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