When nature calls…

When you’re out in the wilderness and nature calls, it’s not comfortable – at all – to answer.

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Park rangers advised that if we needed to take a No. 2, we should dig a hole six inches deep and 100 to 200 feet away from water sources, because that’s where the critters that can decompose the waste are found.

Shikynah and I were slightly repulsed with the idea of having to “go” in the wild. So before embarking on the hike we tried to eat a good amount of food in hopes that our calls would be made while we still had access to campgrounds restrooms.

But it didn’t happen.

So we followed the rangers’ advice. None of us had a shovel of any sort, so we resorted to using a paper bowl to dig a hole. It was also dark when we went and both of us felt uneasy: what if animals suddenly came along?

Fortunately, it all worked out.

Things are a lot different when there aren’t toilets around, but it’s all part of camping.

In any event, we survived the night without any animal disturbances. Well, at least none that we noticed. Our bear canisters (where we stored all our food and scented items) appeared untouched, and we were all ready to chill out for a few hours.

Being 6,000 feet or so above sea level = cold night.

We were all huddled up close together when we slept because it was freezing. Temperatures must have been in the 40s.

Immediately upon waking up, Kevin lit a fire so we all had a source of warmth.

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Then we all made our way down to the stream for a fun, relaxing dip.

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We also collected drinking water from the stream into our water bottles and purified them with iodine tablets.

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Being at a rarely touched water source thousands of feet above sea level was soothing. With no other campers and hardly any animals around, the stream was another perk that made the trek up worthwhile. The water was so beautifully clear that we could see the ground beneath.

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After some fun in the stream and some rest, we roasted some marshmallows, put out the fire, took a last look at our campsite, and made our way to Yosemite Point.

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The view is gorgeous and just so incredibly breathtaking. You know how there’s that saying, ‘You get what you pay for?’ Well, same thing goes for hikes. The trail was strenuous, but the view made every step of the way worth it.

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We made our way back down in less than three hours (hooray for less rest stops needed going down!) and stopped by Tunnel View for this handsome view:

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With so much energy exerted on the Upper Yosemite Falls hike, I almost forget that we also completed part of the Mist Trail. There was a lot of incline there as well, but it was much shorter than our long hike.

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