Tackling Yosemite

Several hours outside of San Francisco lies Yosemite National Park. This is a place I had seen in one of Jame’s Franco’s movies, plastered on postcards, and posted on Pinterest. Every image I had ever seen of this place was absolutely beautiful. When I’m so close, how can I not make a trip out there?

So, last May, my boyfriend and I packed a bag one weekend and drove off to Yosemite. I love road trips, so the drive was great. Driving through the mountains was a bit scary for me, as I’m very afraid of heights, but I enjoyed it all nonetheless. As we got closer, the air grew thinner and the fog became thick. We drove higher and higher into the atmosphere. This was all so exciting.

Finally, we had arrived. We parked our car, put on our jackets, and set out for the first hike. The day was cold and drizzly. There were clouds and fog everywhere. He didn’t care very much about the weather, but I must admit I complained a bit. I’m not usually a fan of anywhere that isn’t warm and sunny. The weather was putting me in a strange mood. But off we went on our hike.

It was a very gradual hike. There were probably of hundreds of little steps that we climbed through the woods. Definitely not a very challenging hike at first, which was perfect for me. We climbed higher. And higher. And higher. I began to notice how high up we had come, and I started to feel uneasy. The uneasiness turned into anxiety. I forgot it was possible to even be this high into the air! It was dawning on me that I was too high up to turn around and quit. I didn’t like that.

I told my boyfriend that I needed a break. I climbed onto a rock that jutted out of the mountainside. It was flat and looked perfect for sitting. The height was really getting to me. My anxiety came to a head. I started to cry. I knew I was being ridiculous, but I couldn’t help it. My boyfriend noticed what was going on and joined me on my rock. He pulled a Cliff bar out of his bag for me to eat. After some more crying and some snacking, I eventually laughed at myself and we continued on (though I was still feeling nervous).

Despite how I was feeling, I couldn’t deny how beautiful it all was. Yosemite was possibly one of the most beautiful places I had ever been to. It was pristine. The trees were grand. The waterfalls were not only gorgeous, but hearing the water crash down was soothing to me. I couldn’t believe the size of this place. The mountains went on for as far as the eye could see. It made me feel insignificant – like my problems suddenly weren’t so important. It was a successful day.

We checked into a fantastic little bed and breakfast nearby, explored some local businesses, and ventured off to another hike the next day. I’m proud to say that I did not have an emotional breakdown on our next hike.

Featured: Photo of me silently crying and trying unsuccessfully to play it cool.

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