Garrett's Yosemite

This is a sentiment about Yosemite National Park that I received via e-mail in March of 2002 that's personal, deep and heart-felt. If you've never been here before, nothing you have ever read does a better job of conveying what Yosemite does to you...

"There is a great deal of beauty on this planet, but in Yosemite,
God gives us a glimpse of Heaven itself."

Read On:


I assume you are much like me; at least this is what your website indicates. I am impressed with the care taken in sharing with the world what Yosemite is to you. Your website is better with its information about the single most beautiful spot on Earth than any of the "official" sites.

I first came to Yosemite as a child in 1974, before I had the capacity for memory. I have pictures of my three year old self at Inspiration Point. My parents took me periodically throughout my childhood, and I loved it, but it was in my adulthood that the sheer visual poetry of Yosemite gripped my senses. I came to camp as a young single man; just coming to Yosemite to be there. I proposed to my wife at Glacier Point; and yes, we walked out on to the rock to get a commemorative photo of the moment. We've tented, trailered, lodged, hoteled, luxury hoteled, and even slept in the bed of our truck on numerous occasions. Anything just to be there. We've slept by the Merced River at North Pines under the brightest Full Moon I ever saw. We've ice skated in the bracing cold, and huddled under our sleeping bag in a raging snowstorm. We've dipped our toes into the Tuolomne in the Late Spring, and walked across the Surface of Tioga Lake (two Novembers ago when Tioga Road remained open until New Year's 2000; the lake was frozen to a thickness of two feet), and yes, we rang in the new millennium in Yosemite Valley. We've hiked the mist trail in the hot of the Summer, and walked around Mirror Lake on a crisp Fall day. In 1997, I drove in (after it re-opened) just to see what the resulting damage of the flood was. We've seen Bobcats, deer, fat squirrels, and even had an encounter with a hungry bear in April of '99... and on and on. In fact, my wife and I just returned from two glorious nights at the Ahwahnee (where I set my alarm for 1:00 a.m., got up, went down stairs, and had the Great Lounge with its crackling fires all to myself for a couple of hours). I've done quite a bit of traveling, and though some places on this Earth I am content to have visited once, I cannot get enough of Yosemite. Why? Because when I am going to Yosemite, I am going home. Every time I enter the gates, my soul rests at ease, and my whole world is granite cliffs, waterfalls, snow, meadows, and my wife. My heart breaks, and my soul aches every time we leave. I've seen the Alps, and the green pastures of England. I've seen the Canadian Rockies, and the tropics. Nothing even comes close to Yosemite. Nothing. There is a great deal of beauty on this planet, but in Yosemite, God gives us a glimpse of Heaven itself.

I apologize for being long winded. Like your website, there's just no doing justice to Yosemite with limited space. One cannot be brief when describing it. Thank you for the opportunity of a virtual visit via your website. If I cannot be at home, at least I can view the faint echoes of it."

Garrett Y.
Central California