So Long, Long Hike, Longer than Expected Drive

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Lake Tahoe, California to Yosemite National Park, California, 245 miles

0901 Lake Tahoe to Yosemite Valley 245

Map credit: Google Maps 2017, courtesy AAA

Since it was our last morning in paradise, Kim and I wanted to take Laura and Don out for breakfast and one of their favorite places called Bert’s, which happens to be right across the street from Ernie’s.  Too funny!  Bert’s  would have been one of my go-to joints as well – my sausage Benedict was incredible, and Kim’s eggs, bacon, and blueberry pancake looked yummy.  We went back to the cabin and loaded our car, and then Kim and I headed up the lake toward Emerald Bay for a hike and a tour of Vikingsholm.  We parked the car at Eagle Point Campground and made our way to the trailhead of the Rubicon trail, which was about 1.5 miles from Vikingsholm, which was a private home built by Mrs. Lora Knight in 1929.

Rex and I had been to Vikingsholm before, but we had hiked down the driveway, which is a VERY STEEP 1 mile hike – killer on the knees going down and aerobically exhausting getting back up.  The Rubicon trail is longer, but on a much easier grade.  It was a fun hike, as we could see the tea house on Fannette Island and then even Vikingsholm on the way down the mountain.  Just before reaching the house, we crossed a bridge over a pretty running creek.  We got there just in time for the noon tour, which we thoroughly enjoyed.  Be sure to read more about Vikingsholm HERE, and visit it when you go to Lake Tahoe.

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The hike back up was not bad at all, although it was a good bit warmer by the time we started up the hill.  Just as we reached the end of the trail, we met a couple and a Tahoe photography tour guide who were on their way to the Point, so we extended our hike long enough to see the view from there.  We were rewarded with panoramic views of the lake and of Emerald Bay, and we could even see Don and Laura’s place from there.  We saw a huge eagle’s nest on the way back, but no eagles – bummer!

Since we were going to Yosemite, we knew we needed to get on the road soon, so we didn’t delay any more, nor did we stop for a cold drink.  It was just as well, since the route we had decided to take proved to be impassable due to a forest fire.  Thankfully, we did not have to backtrack too far to get on a different path (thanks to a friendly sheriff who was in the right place at the right time for us – getting his mail from a rural mailbox where we just happened to be turning around!) and we made it to the Yosemite Valley Lodge just as darkness fell.  Turns out it was really good we talked to the sheriff, because the alternate route we would have taken was also closed due to a different fire!  Yosemite is one of those places that you have to wanna be – it was not an easy drive, but it was beautiful!  At least I was able to enjoy it – I had to keep telling Kim not to look, as it was a steep, curvy mountain road with very few guardrails.  We were very thankful to have gotten as far as we did before the sun started setting!

We got checked in, found our room (not without incident!), unloaded the car, and headed to the Mountain Room Lounge for a late dinner and a well-deserved adult beverage.  We opted to share a big appetizer platter of ceviche, a charcuterie, and chips and salsa while sipping on cocktails.  We had enough food for about six people and we did not eat it all!

After our long and tiring day (all 17,000 steps of it), we sort of collapsed into our beds and were asleep right away.  If only we’d had some air conditioning, we may have slept really well!  And if Kim hadn’t waked up worrying about forest fires!  Anyway, it was a fantastic day and we were thrilled to be in the park!

 

 

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