I rose extremely early for the YARTS bus; it was still very
cold outside and dark when I went to stand out there for
the bus. I stood there, the bus didn't arrive on time. I waited
longer still, and it didn't come. I watched longingly as
cars passed, wishing I was in one of them on my way to
Yosemite Valley. Finally the bus arrived, considerably later
than expected; this was due to foul weather and the fact
that it had chains on - already! The road was icey and it
was too early for the gritters (if, indeed, there were any).
Away we trundled, the chains
making a clanging noise as we went. Speed was slow, and as
the time went by I was gradually losing hope of catching
that 8.30am bus.
Then, just as I though we might make it, disaster struck! A
chain broke and we had to pull over, it was lost somewhere
way back up the road so a spare one had to be fitted. This
was it, there was no chance of catching that 8.30am bus now,
my hopes of snowboarding today were dashed. When we finally
arrived in Yosemite Valley I tried my best to get to that
lesson but there was no way, I pulled myself together and
went to Badger Pass anyway, perhaps there was something
else I could do up there for the remainder of the day.
And there was: snowshoeing! I hired a pair for the day and
took to the snow-covered hills along the snowshoe trail.
This really was a winter wonderland! Singing: "Hey, can ya hear me,
hey, something or other; a something something, something
something, walking in a winter wonderland!"
The silence of the place was breath-taking, the only sound was
the occasional creaking of tree branches weighed down with snow.
It was cold though, I wasn't hiking up mountain sides so
wasn't generating the same heat as before, the snowshoes
weren't exactly easy to manage either - they required big
steps and careful placement with each one to get a good grip
in the snow. Sometimes the snow was too deep and my feet
went down a foot or so into it!
Up on the top of a hillock I found myself at a clearing, and
quite lost. I knew the way I had come, but I wanted to go
around in a loop; it was so easy to get confused with trees
all around, each direction looking the same. A couple of
passing snowboarders gave me directions, and with the exception of a
couple of cross-country skiers they were the only people I
saw up in the trees that day.
Presently the weather began to turn bad again, and cold, so
I made my way back to the main challet complex and waited for
my bus back down to Yosemite Valley, then on to the hostel.
Back in the hostel I put my feet up next to the warm stove,
ready for another day in Yosemite; this time I hoped to get
a chance to snowboard. I decided it was to be my last day
in Yosemite so that night I packed up all my stuff, ready for the off
early next morning.