Thursday, May 17, 2018

Yosemite here we come

Yesterday morning we left one of the nicest campgrounds we have stayed in and continued our journey west on I-80. The campground in Sparks, NV did not have grass and all the campsites were finished with artificial grass. The campground maintenance staff were continually at work with tasks such as trimming foliage and collecting garbage.

Our campsite at Sparks Marina RV Park 

Notice the artificial grass

 Leaving the campground we climbed up the Sierra Nevada Mountains to the rest area at Donner Summit and took a short break. The altimeter on our GPS read 7219 feet.

Altitude at the rest area at Donner Summit

Nearing the rest area we notice the clouds seem to be on the same level as the highway.

We are in the clouds

You know the old saying that what goes up must come down and after leaving the rest area there was a sign warning us that the road will be in steep decent for the next 40 miles. Now that may not be of concern to your average motorist but when you are the jockey of a combined weight of 37,000 pounds you take notice. If you don't want to burn up your brakes and be capable of stopping or slowing when necessary, you must keep your speed reduced. What is frightening is descending a one mile grade of over 6% and seeing a sharp curve up ahead. You lean quickly to keep your speed down and use lower gears. We decided to fall in behind a Walmart truck that practiced safe driving. Many semis passed us but we were in no hurry.

Our Walmart guide

After reaching Sacramento we made a turn due south on California 99. We saw a sign giving the elevation of Sacramento at 30 feet. A little math reveals that we descended 7300 feet from the summit at Donner Pass. The drive down 99 was near depressing as the majority of the scenery was industrial and the traffic intense at times. We eventually reached the exit to our final destination of Oakhurst, CA. This turned us back due east in the direction of the Sierra Nevada's and we could see the mountains up ahead.

Mountains ahead

This morning when we awoke the temperature at our campsite was 41 and the furnaces went back on in the motorhome. We have not experienced any hot weather since we left Mesquite, NV on May 8th. Our current location is 16 miles from the entrance of Yosemite National Park and we plan to spend most of the day there. The weather is forecast to be good today with sunshine and the high in Yosemite Valley around 62.  Coats will definitely be with us. Since it is Thursday and school is not out yet for the summer we are hoping for moderate crowds.

No comments:

Post a Comment