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Old 10-31-2006, 04:03 PM   #1
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A cold day in Yosemite

Woke up this Sunday at 5am. Realizing that the daylight saving time just ended, so it was really 4am. I was so awake that I decided to get out of bed and do something. Took the dog out for a couple of laps around the neighborhood. It was chilly. Fall is finally here. After the walk, I thought I would clean up the dead bugs on the ST from last weekend's overnighter to Yosemite overnighter to Yosemite with the NBSR bunch.

Got the bike cleaned up by 6am. Showered, then fed the dog. Now what? Oh, I forgot to bring up the gizmo from the garage. Went to the garage to get the gizmo... Boy, the ST sure is clean now, I thought. This is probably the last good weather days on the passes. Hmmm, I really should maximize the one-hour gain. Maybe another pass run? Nah, that would be wrong and irresponsible. Afterall, I just did it last weekend. Plus, it's a work day tomorrow. It would take 11 to 12 hours just to make the roundtrip from Hercules. I really shouldn't. Fine, that's settled then. I'll go watch a DVD...

8:45am, while sitting on a can at the Chevron station just outside of Jamestown, I pondered how I was going to explain to the GF that I was only 60 miles away from the Yosemite gate. Words will come to me, I thought.

The flight down 680 and 205 were uneventful other than the 5 Chippies on the sides of the freeway busy earning their pay already. About Modesto, some brain surgeon on 4 wheels managed to play "sky-ground-sky-ground" into a ditch. Split a couple of miles to keep moving. It sure was cold. The temp gauge showed barely 50's. That's when I thought I really need to add a couple of Powerlets to the ST for a heated vest this winter. Damn, my stomach is not agreeing with this cold temp either. Got to find a can. Jamestown is coming up... I have been going for an hour and half now... It's a good time to stop and stretch.

8:55am, grabbed myself a cup of hot chocolate from the auto-dispenser, paid the cashier, and found myself an outside seating. Dialed the GF:

"Morning! How did you sleep (she wasn't feeling well last night)?", I said.

"Blah, blah, blah, blah... Where are you?", she said.

"I am in Jamestown, which is about 60 miles from the Yosemite gate."
.
Silence
.
I could hear pin drops.
.
I should buy an electric blanket on the way home tonight.
.

Needless to say, the rest of the call went as exactly planned Made one more call to my sister to ask her to look in on my dog this afternoon. Filled-up the tank, MP3 "On", then off I went to 120.

There is the turn-off to Chinese Camp. Here we go. Hey, another Chippie, wave and smile. No less than 10 miles down the road, another Chippie was camped out at Moccasin Poin boat launch. Them Chippies were lined-up for Sunday return business for sure.

Up Priest Grade... Fun. No cars. Getting colder. Made a stop to add another layer at the Rim of the World.

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:06 PM   #2
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At the gate, I paid my $10 to help out the park and stuff. Made my way to Crane Flat. No Valley this time, so I made a leftie to continue on to Tioga Pass.

The sun was out. I still wished for Powerlets and a vest though.

The lines...

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:08 PM   #3
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There were very few cars and motorcycles on this day. There was this empty and deserted feeling to the road.

Nevertheless, I still managed to let this car get in the pic:

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:09 PM   #4
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Trees...

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:10 PM   #5
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Looking East on Tioga...

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:12 PM   #6
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Cold still...

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:12 PM   #7
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How them trees grow out of the rocks is still beyond me...

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:13 PM   #8
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From where everyone stops on Tioga...

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:14 PM   #9
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Too cold... Gotta keep moving.

Leaving from the stop where everyone stops:

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:15 PM   #10
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Last stop before leaving the East gate:

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:16 PM   #11
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Looking toward West:

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:18 PM   #12
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Where did I have lunch?

As luck would have it, this was their last day open for this season. A hot bowl of Jambalaya was all I needed to warm up the bones.

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:20 PM   #13
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Where am I?

The next 30-mile stretch is probably one of the finest that Norcal has to offer. Every year around May, I start to check Caltrans' site everyday for its status.

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:21 PM   #14
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More rocks...

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Old 10-31-2006, 04:21 PM   #15
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Rocks too...

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