[RoadTrip] Nevada and Vernal Falls


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Pour la deuxième journée à Yosemite, on se lance dans une petite randonnée vers Mirror Lake. Au bout de 45 minutes de marche, on tombe sur un lac complètement asséché! On rebrousse alors chemin pour se diriger vers les Nevada and Vernal Falls en espérant cette fois-ci qu’il y ait un peu d’eau!

Après 30 bonnes minutes de marche avec des pentes à plus de 20%, on arrive enfin sur une première chute, Vernal Fall : On est ensuite monté en haut de la chute, on se retrouve alors où niveau de Emerald Pool. Nous y avons passé une trentaine de minutes pour manger.

On a ensuite continué un peu pour se rapprocher de la seconde chute, Nevada Fall.

Il est possible de monter tout en haut de Nevada Fall, mais nous n’avions pas le temps de la faire. On avait prévu de quitter tôt Yosemite pour se faire le coucher de soleil à Mono Lake.

C’est un très bonne balade, avec de belles ascensions, dommage que l’on est perdu notre temps avec Mirror Lake, on serait bien monté jusqu’en haut!

[RoadTrip] Yosemite Falls Trail


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Pour rester sur notre lancée de grand sportif, on avait prévu de faire un petit footing mais comme la nuit dans la voiture a laissé quelques traces, on change alors nos plans. On se lance ainsi dans l’ascension des Yosemite Falls!

Comme à l’accoutumée depuis le départ, on part à l’arrache, sans carte, sans montre, avec seulement un litre d’eau à deux. On a largement sous estimé les difficultés de la « balade« ! De plus, la journée s’annonce chaude et il n’y a pas de vent comme à SF pour refroidir l’air…

On prend vite de l’altitude, la chaleur monte également très vite, l’eau descend quant à elle à une vitesse fulgurante. Mais on tient bon, on profite notamment de la vue…

On imagine maintenant le point de vue que l’on aurait eu sur les chutes si on avait été au mois de mai, période où le débit des chutes est au plus haut !

La dernière demi-heure est la plus dure, il y a très peu d’ombre pour s’abriter du soleil, on prend de l’eau goule par goule pour l’économiser, on a quasiment plus jambe… Notre rêve est de tomber sur un marchant de glace une fois arrivé au sommet, même à 20$ la glace!

Une fois arrivé en haut, on peut profiter du panorama de la vallée et des montagnes au loin…

.. mais aucune trace du marchant de glace, on a quand même trouvé un peu d’eau pour se rafraîchir. Au même moment, on a croisé un habitué des lieux qui nous a dit qu’en mai, l’hauteur de l’eau est au niveau du pont.

Après un bon moment passé en haut, on est reparti pour la descente. En tout, la balade à durée 4h… Finalement, le footing aurait surement était plus simple…

Note à nous même pour la prochaine rando : prendre beaucoup d’eau et éviter l’heure de midi !

[RoadTrip] Route vers Yosemite


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Mercredi 12 septembre, départ pour le roadtrip

9h, le réveil sonne. La première mission de la journée est d’aller faire une lessive puis d’acheter quelques provisions pour le voyage qui dure tout de même 4h. On doit également récupérer la voiture de location avant 12h.

11h30, nous revoilà à l’hôtel, le gérant nous chope à l’entrée pour nous dire que l’on aurait déjà dû rendre la chambre depuis 3h… Je me dépêche alors de faire les bagages et de ranger la chambre pendant que Robin va chercher la voiture.

12h, on charge les bagages dans notre Ford Fusion fraîchement acquise et c’est partie!

Go to Yosemite…

Je tiens tout de même à préciser que l’on a eu beaucoup de chance de tomber sur cette voiture, car nous avons seulement commencé à chercher une la veille. Et au vu des prix exorbitants (1200$ pour 6 jours) des offres des rent-car réputés (Hertz, National…) on se voyait déjà poursuivre notre séjour à San Francisco jusqu’à ce que l’on tombe sur Budget qui nous proposait la voiture pour 330$.

Nous quittons maintenant la ville et profitons des paysages.

Puis quelques centaines de miles plus loin, nous nous retrouvons dans les routes sinueuses de la montagne… Ça monte, ça monte… Tout comme la température… On atteint facilement les 35°C !

On s’arrête ensuite à un Vista Point (point de vue) pour faire une pause. On en profite pour faire quelques pic du bolide !

Après les nombreux lacets et miles parcourus, on aperçoit enfin un morceau de Yosemite! La fameux Half Dome. On s’arrête alors à un autre Vista Point afin d’immortaliser ce moment.

Une heure plus tard, on rentre enfin dans Yosemite. On s’acquitte alors des droits d’entrée au parc d’un montant de 20$ par voiture valable 7 jours. Mais quelle déception de se retrouver face à Yosemite Falls à sec! Cependant on s’y attendait, généralement, la chute est asséchée entre août et octobre.

On a quand même une belle vue sur le Half Dome.

On cherche ensuite un endroit pour manger. On ne s’était pas rendu compte à San Francisco à cause des nombreuses lumières mais en Californie la nuit tombe très tôt. A 20h30, il fait déjà nuit noir. Comme on est équipé comme des baroudeurs du dimanche on a bien évidement pas de lampes avec nous! Donc pour résumé, il est 20h30, il fait nuit noir, on a pas de lumière, on n’a pas de logement et on est au milieu d’un parc national de 3000km². La seul chose à faire est de tenter de trouver un endroit pour dormir. La plus part des endroits tranquilles sont « Day Use Only ». On évite alors de s’y garer pour éviter un réveille brutal par les rangers au beau milieu de la nuit. Vous l’aurez deviné, on a pas réservé d’hôtel, et on est un peu à l’arrache! A force de tourner en rond sans succès, on décide alors de se garer au bord de la route.

On prépare alors la voiture, on met toutes les valises devant, on enlève les sièges arrières, puis on s’installe dans le coffre… 5 minutes plus tard, l’alarme de la voiture retenti! Tout affolé en se demandant ce qu’il se passe, on cherche les clés pour mettre fin au vacarme, bien évidement, impossible de mettre la main dessus rapidement et on a eu le temps de réveiller 3 fois tous les ours de la vallée! On essaye ensuite de comprendre ce qu’il s’est passé. On découvre alors que Ford a pensé à nous en installant une gâchette de secours dans le coffre afin de l’ouvrir! Mais son utilisation provoque le déclenchement de l’alarme… On la positionne alors de telle façon à ce que cela ne se reproduise pas, et on met également les clés en évidence. Now, it’s 9:30pm , and it’s time to sleep! (realy?)

23h, on commençait à « bien » dormir et ce qui devait arrivé arriva!

     Toc Toc Toc
     « Is there guys here? »

On se réveille en sursaut, je récupère les clés afin d’ouvrir la voiture pour éviter de faire sonner l’alarme. Une fois la porte ouverte, je me retrouve nez à nez avec un Ranger. J’essaye de comprendre ce qu’il me dit. J’ai rapidement compris que l’on avait pas le droit de dormir là où on était. Il me demande si j’ai une carte pour qu’il nous indique un lieu où dormir. J’ai répondu oui, puis au bout de 5 minutes, je lui ai répondu non car elle était enfouie sous notre amas de bagages à l’avant. Il tente alors de m’indiquer la route d’un camping. On se retrouve alors, au beau milieu de la nuit, à remettre tous les bagages derrières pour pouvoir conduire. Au final, on a jamais réussi à trouver le camping, et on s’est garé sur le parking d’un hôtel où on a pu terminer notre nuit sans encombre.

En bonus, notre hôtel 6 étoiles :

Cette première journée de roadtrip à l’arrache nous aura réservée de belles surprises et on en gardera un bon souvenir 🙂

[SF] Golden Gate Bridge


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Notre première rencontre avec le fameux Golden Gate Bridge fut au cours d’un footing le long de la plage. Celui-ci commençait à disparaître dans le brouillard, la fameux fog… 

A notre retour, cela n’a pas loupé, l’ensemble du pont s’est retrouvé engloutie par le fog, aspiré par les courants chauds des terres.

Le brouillard est dû à la faible température du Pacific et à la chaleur de l’atmosphère. De la condensation se forme, et est ensuite aspirée très rapidement vers SF par les hautes températures de l’air provenant des terres. Le fog est imprévisible, seul les plus expérimentés peuvent le prédire.

Nous avons ensuite voulu voir le pont de plus près. Nous avons donc loué des vélos puis on a fait la traversé. L’aller prend environ 1H15. Il est possible de revenir en ferry et l’heure de location de vélo coûte 10$. Maintenant que l’on fait du footing à l’américaine, on a opté pour l’aller/retour en vélo 😉

Et une fois de l’autre côté :

Cette fois-ci, on a profité du pont sans le brouillard 🙂

Ainsi cet article clôture l’épisode SF. C’est une très jolie ville où on aurait pu passer encore plusieurs jours sans s’ennuyer! On a fait l’essentiel en visitant les anciens quartiers tels que le quartier Gay et Hippie. On a aussi profiter des parcs et des zones touristiques comme Union Square et Pier 39. Maintenant on va prendre la route pour un roadtrip de 6 jours. Direction Yosemite National Park! Pour ce qui suit on ne sait pas encore…