This Trip Report Is Under Refurbishment For Your Future Enjoyment (UPDATED 9/13 with final bonus chapter)

QueenJen

Mouseketeer
Joined
Sep 2, 2012
You might even have parks you visit once and never want to return to again (looking at you, Everglades).
Didn't you visit the Everglades twice and enjoy the mosquitos? :p

I was mesmerized.
That really is beautiful.

I'm still following along and really enjoying hearing about your family travels. We recently took a road trip and I thought about your family and the rope drop approach as I about killed my husband and dog with a 4 mile unplanned mid-day hike with full sun and no shade (had plenty of water for the dog). I felt a little better when I read one of your last updates about hiking in the heat of the day.
 

Captain_Oblivious

DIS Dad #257
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
I just read through your entire trip report in about 2 days.
Wow! You must have been really hard up for some entertainment. :laughing:

But thanks and :welcome:

I skipped most of the comments (sorry everyone! especially @pkondz), and just read your posts. I really enjoyed reading about your family's adventures.
I feel you when it comes to your brother on the Disney World trip. I've done Disney World 3 times (trip #4 next month!), with just the 3 of us, Me, DW and DS(11). (You can read my never-finished trip report from 2015 in my signature). I would never go with family, because they would drive me crazy. I am a meticulous planner, and I get frustrated when my plans have to change. My son is worse than I am about that.

If I tried to go with my brother, I would probably have to kill someone. We've done day trips to Disneyland with him (we live in SoCal - about an hour and a half away), and it's awful. Tons of standing around, trying to decide what to do, then once we make a plan, he will change his mind half-way there. He absolutely would be the one to show up a half hour late to a dinner reservation because he was off doing something else. Or more likely, the original dinner plan would be his (the most expensive place, with food we don't even really like), and we'd all grudgingly agree to go, and then he wouldn't show up at all.
It's the wasted time that kills me. I hate standing around trying to make a decision. Those decisions should already have been made in advance!

Your pictures of Yosemite are beautiful. I haven't been there since 2002 or so, and DS hasn't been at all. Never stayed at the lodge, we've always tent camped there. Sometimes in the valley and sometimes outside. Last time was one of the Pines campgrounds (I want to say Upper Pines, but I'm not sure). Definitely something I want to do again. Our son is right at the age where he can handle some of the long hikes.
It really lived up to the hype. Hopefully I won't wait another 44 years to go back!

Didn't you visit the Everglades twice and enjoy the mosquitos? :p
Well, I'm an idiot.

That really is beautiful.

I'm still following along and really enjoying hearing about your family travels. We recently took a road trip and I thought about your family and the rope drop approach as I about killed my husband and dog with a 4 mile unplanned mid-day hike with full sun and no shade (had plenty of water for the dog). I felt a little better when I read one of your last updates about hiking in the heat of the day.
Glad you're still here!

I mean, at least you took care of the dog. So you had your priorities straight! Where did you travel?
 

jglor

Earning My Ears
Joined
May 28, 2015
Wow! You must have been really hard up for some entertainment
Well, to be honest, last week was really boring at work. But seriously, I tend to look for trip reports from people who have kids around the age of my son, who is 11, just to see what their experience is like, compared to ours. I do enjoy reading other reports, but it's easier to live vicariously through a trip report from someone who seems more like you. I just can't relate as much to the young couples who spend their whole trips in the fancy restaurants and take all the food pictures but don't talk about the rides. Us 40-something dads need to stick together. Although those reports can be fun to read sometimes too.

Your Scott seems very close in age and personality to my son and it's fun to see the parks through another family's eyes.
 
  • KangaFan

    Hoping to someday be as patient as Kanga
    Joined
    Nov 20, 2006
    Just finished your TR--I agree that traveling with a big group is tough, especially with shared meals where they won't let you check in until everyone is there. I have a trip coming up with DD17, my two sisters and their girls, ages 10, 13, 16, 17. I rented points so we could have a kitchen and only have 2 ADRs to both save $$$ and frustration on my part with their different sense of urgency when it comes to arriving places on time. :-) I also apologize for the traffic mote that is DC. We leave in the Virginia suburbs and there's nothing worse than hitting the beltway at the wrong time. Heading south towards Fredericksburg is almost always bad as well. I'm not sure what it is, but there's always a slowdown around there and its painful when your not even close to your final destination.
     

    QueenJen

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Sep 2, 2012
    Where did you travel?
    Southern Idaho - I think you would be most impressed with the destination of previously mentioned hike. We went to visit Shoshone Falls and took the hike to see the Evel Knievel Snake River jumpsight. We (well DH) drove about 2,500 miles in 10 days.
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    Well, to be honest, last week was really boring at work. But seriously, I tend to look for trip reports from people who have kids around the age of my son, who is 11, just to see what their experience is like, compared to ours. I do enjoy reading other reports, but it's easier to live vicariously through a trip report from someone who seems more like you. I just can't relate as much to the young couples who spend their whole trips in the fancy restaurants and take all the food pictures but don't talk about the rides. Us 40-something dads need to stick together. Although those reports can be fun to read sometimes too.

    Your Scott seems very close in age and personality to my son and it's fun to see the parks through another family's eyes.
    Yeah, it's definitely easier to relate to people who are in the same station of life or have the same tastes. But I do have some friends on here whom I've gotten to know that travel far differently than I do. Some of them have fancy gourmet tastes and most of the time I have no idea what they're talking about and can't pronounce what they're eating. But every once in a while I learn something.

    Just finished your TR--I agree that traveling with a big group is tough, especially with shared meals where they won't let you check in until everyone is there. I have a trip coming up with DD17, my two sisters and their girls, ages 10, 13, 16, 17. I rented points so we could have a kitchen and only have 2 ADRs to both save $$$ and frustration on my part with their different sense of urgency when it comes to arriving places on time. :-) I also apologize for the traffic mote that is DC. We leave in the Virginia suburbs and there's nothing worse than hitting the beltway at the wrong time. Heading south towards Fredericksburg is almost always bad as well. I'm not sure what it is, but there's always a slowdown around there and its painful when your not even close to your final destination.
    :welcome: and thank you for reading! I think it makes a lot of sense to rent the kitchen and do meals yourself. Certainly it saves money. My wife wouldn't go for it because for her, vacation means not having to cook meals.

    I've lived in Delaware all my life, so I know how bad the DC Beltway is. But the stretch from there to Fredericksburg feels like more of a recent development. That wasn't always awful before. But now it is.

    Southern Idaho - I think you would be most impressed with the destination of previously mentioned hike. We went to visit Shoshone Falls and took the hike to see the Evel Knievel Snake River jumpsight. We (well DH) drove about 2,500 miles in 10 days.
    Sounds like fun! Hope you had a great time.
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    Well, folks...I had tried to finish up the bonus chapters on California before leaving on my summer vacation, but it's just not going to happen. So you'll have to wait on the edges of your seats for more Yosemite exploration when I get back.

    In the meantime, be good, and I'll see you in a couple of weeks...if all goes well, we'll have visited 49 states as a family when it's finished!
     
  • KangaFan

    Hoping to someday be as patient as Kanga
    Joined
    Nov 20, 2006
    :welcome: and thank you for reading! I think it makes a lot of sense to rent the kitchen and do meals yourself. Certainly it saves money. My wife wouldn't go for it because for her, vacation means not having to cook meals.
    Just wait until your kids get a bit older, I'm planning on assigning the 16 & 17s to KP duty. :thumbsup2
     

    afwdwfan

    DIS Dad #460
    Joined
    Apr 23, 2010
    Good grief. You don’t have to cheer so loud.
    For crying out loud, it was a golf clap! Who do you think you are? Tiger Woods getting triggered over the click of a camera???
    Sadly, the course had been temporarily closed so they could erect hospitality tents for the upcoming U.S. Open. Womp womp.
    That's the official story. The better story is that they closed it down because Carl Spackler had been brought in to deal with a little gopher problem.
    The cave is actually home to bats, and the trail is occasionally closed during mating season for the bats. We did not encounter a single bat on our hike. I know you’re disappointed. We also did not see any sign of Alfred or Bruce Wayne.
    You mean you hiked all that way in the blazing heat and missed batman??? What a waste.
    Rather than flounder around in the wilderness looking for a trail we’d never seen before in an area with no cell phone signal, we decided to return to the loop trail and head back down the mountain.
    Probably a wise decision. You don't make many of those.
    It got even more boring when we crossed the hills and into California’s great Central Valley, which might actually be flatter than Delaware. We took several 2-lane roads that blasted straight and true through miles of farm fields and orchards.
    Ok... I'd nerd out on that. I know that's a pretty fertile region that raises diverse crops. I'd be looking at every field just to see what is growing and try to see how things are done differently from here. Kind of like the life size version of Living with the land.
    It was here that we had a DISMeet at dinner. Alicia (@Leshaface), her husband Dan, and her boys were gracious enough to up with us at a sandwich/pizza shop called Bravo Farms. Dan and Alicia’s kids might be the friendliest kids I’ve ever met. They were best friends with Drew about 30 seconds into the conversation. Needless to say, with three young boys there, our table was…how should I put it?
    2 wonderful families! I'm glad you had the opportunity to meet them and that the boys were able to make noise and have fun!
    The Giant Forest Museum had some cute exhibits inside, including this one that compared the sequoia to the space shuttle, the Statue of Liberty, and 20 elephants stacked on top of each other. In case you encounter that situation in your travels and need to know whether it’s taller than a sequoia or not.
    That's a good display for size comparison. Space shuttle? Statue of Liberty? Those really help put it into perspective. But 20 elephants stacked on top of one another? Really? Has anyone ever seen that? How does that even help?
    There was still snow present on the mountain ridges at these elevations, so it presented some unique challenges along the way. Good thing my kids are problem-solvers.
    Nobody wants to walk around in wet shoes! Nicely done!
    No one has ever accused my family of being radical environmentalists, but I like clean air and water as much as the next guy. In a park like this, you can’t help but be grateful that specimen trees like these are protected.

    Tree huggers... :sad2:
    I can definitely tell you that the theater was air-conditioned. Other than that, my recollection is a bit hazy
    So... you're saying it was a good nap and the film could have been just a bit longer?
    We stood here a very long time, just taking it in. It’s a special place. We took a lot of photos, and I’ll try not to torture you with too many of them. We couldn’t help ourselves—this looked like the Gateway to Heaven.
    Definitely a beautiful view. Good call on taking the back way in to see that!
    I know you always comment about when other people take photos they never frame it right. The background is always out of whack or they don't have everyone fully in the frame or something. But whoever took this one should be given a medal.

    That waterfall couldn't have been placed more perfectly!

    We finally decided to leave when two busloads of tourists showed up to watch the sunset.
    Definite sign to roll out!
    We moved on and finally checked into our hotel for the next two nights. We were staying at the place formerly known as the Yosemite Lodge at the Falls, but due to a lawsuit over trademarks was now being called the Yosemite Valley Lodge. Now, as of this writing, the lawsuit has been settled and it will now be known as the Yosemite Lodge at the Falls once again. Got all that?
    Got it. Instead of Scotty, this time it was "then lawyers happened."
    This room cost in the neighborhood of $300/night. And yes, that’s steep. But given the location and the needs of my family, it was worth it. This was the best room we’ve ever had in a national park. Look at this space! It was like having our own clubhouse:
    Actually seems pretty reasonable for a room of that size, really anywhere. And it does look a lot nicer than most National Park lodges!
     

    jedijill

    Chiefs fan living in Bronco country
    Joined
    Jan 17, 2005
    Have a great trip! Can't wait to hear all about it!

    Jill in CO
     
  • pkondz

    . . Dis Dad #797 . . Hoping to get lucky
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    Well, folks...I had tried to finish up the bonus chapters on California before leaving on my summer vacation, but it's just not going to happen. So you'll have to wait on the edges of your seats for more Yosemite exploration when I get back.

    In the meantime, be good, and I'll see you in a couple of weeks...if all goes well, we'll have visited 49 states as a family when it's finished!
    have a great vacation!!
     

    pkondz

    . . Dis Dad #797 . . Hoping to get lucky
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    Some of them are ridiculously inaccessible, to the point where I’m fairly certain I will never see them. The National Park of American Samoa is on a tiny island in the South Pacific.
    Meh. Do-able. Just sell a kidney or two. I fail to see the problem.
    Some parks in Alaska, such as the Kobuk Valley or Lake Clark or Gates of the Arctic, have no roads leading to them and are only reachable by small charter planes.
    And with a family of 6, you'll need at least two planes per trip.
    the national parks always reward you for the effort it took to get there (except maybe Hot Springs).
    :rolleyes1
    You’ll almost always see something there that you wouldn’t have been able to see anywhere else (except maybe Joshua Tree National Park).
    Ah yes. Remember that one too.
    You might even have parks you visit once and never want to return to again (looking at you, Everglades).
    That still bugs you, doesn't it. Leaves a bit of a sting on the soul, huh?
    Even foreigners all over the world know of them and want to visit: the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, and Yosemite National Parks.
    ::yes::

    I've been to Yellowstone... but that was (literally) over 45 years ago.
    Memory might be slightly fuzzy.
    stopped for gas and some McDonald’s fries to munch on,
    What???? Where are the PB&Js????
    Massive sign. You can't miss it.
    It was another 45 minutes of driving (behind a very slow old-timer in a convertible who apparently wasn’t aware of the pull-offs to allow others to pass)
    :sad2:
    Some people are clueless.
    I had a very specific reason for entering the park on Rt. 41, coming up from the south. When driving in that direction, you reach the valley by driving through a tunnel through the mountain that is about a mile long. Upon emerging from the tunnel, there’s an observation point/lookout immediately to the left called Tunnel View, which gives visitors an amazing view of the entire valley below.
    I read this and was so hoping you hadn't gotten that wrong.
    We rounded a bend, high up in the Sierra Nevada range once more. We entered the tunnel, knowing we were about to see the valley for the first time. And yet, I still don’t think we were quite ready for it. We could see the end of the tunnel approaching—at first, just a tiny point of light ahead. Gradually, that opening began to widen and then, right in the center of our view in a feat of perfect engineering, a roaring waterfall appeared. Another second or two and we burst out of the tunnel. Immediately, everyone in the car let out an involuntary “WHOA…..” Julie later said she felt her eyes tear up.
    Yuss!!!! Glad that worked out so well. So glad... I'd love to do the exact same thing.
    The view from here was indescribably beautiful. It’s one of the most jaw-droppingly glorious sights I’ve ever seen in my life.
    Whoa... Coming from you... that's saying a lot.
    I know that view! (but only from photos... lots of photos.)
    To the left, the vertical rock face is the famous El Capitan.
    ::yes::
    The other famous rock formation, Half Dome,
    ::yes::
    We stood here a very long time, just taking it in.
    I am not a bit surprised. I mean... wow!
    This is Bridal Veil Falls.
    ::yes::
    We tried some family photos, but it was hard to get the lighting right. They would either come out too dark, or, when we used the flash, it looked like we were standing in front of a fake backdrop.
    Need some help fixing those? Just let me know.
    We finally decided to leave when two busloads of tourists showed up to watch the sunset.
    Yeah, good timing.
    It was easy to see why John Muir had argued so passionately for its protection with Theodore Roosevelt.
    Indeed! Incredible!
    Yosemite Falls came into view after we drove past El Capitan. It’s actually a triple-decker falls—three different tiers dropping over 2,400 ft. to the valley floor. This is another waterfall that will completely dry up over the course of the summer.
    Oh! You're definitely selling this as a spring time visit.
    Wow! I mean... jaw drop wow!
    We were staying at the place formerly known as the Yosemite Lodge at the Falls, but due to a lawsuit over trademarks was now being called the Yosemite Valley Lodge. Now, as of this writing, the lawsuit has been settled and it will now be known as the Yosemite Lodge at the Falls once again. Got all that?
    I guess? You Yanks are weird.
    I ended up trying for 3 days before I finally found an availability for a family suite for two nights. Since we were arriving on a Tuesday, I grabbed those dates and then planned the rest of the trip so that those dates would work for us.
    Sounds like you were lucky to get that. Even with the pre-planning.
    This was the best room we’ve ever had in a national park. Look at this space! It was like having our own clubhouse:
    Nice! Tons of room!
    After cramming ourselves into various Hampton Inns, this felt like the lap of luxury. We loved it there.
    I can see that. :)
    We got pizzas and calzones from the food court which were thoroughly mediocre.
    So... yay?
    Which is actually a big win for a national park food court.
    Okay... Yay it is.
     

    Steppesister

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Dec 27, 2013
    You’ll almost always see something there that you wouldn’t have been able to see anywhere else (except maybe Joshua Tree National Park).
    I love Joshua Tree! Why do you say you can't see anything new there? Curious!

    nobody makes much of an effort to see (like Saguaro
    My other fave!

    We made it to the city of Fresno,
    Home of my birthplace!

    I had a very specific reason for entering the park on Rt. 41, coming up from the south. When driving in that direction, you reach the valley by driving through a tunnel through the mountain that is about a mile long. Upon emerging from the tunnel, there’s an observation point/lookout immediately to the left called Tunnel View, which gives visitors an amazing view of the entire valley below. I wanted this to be our very first view of the Yosemite Valley.
    I know it's an extremely lame comparison, but I kinda felt that way when I saw Carsland for the first time at DLR when Alison took me through the "back entrance". So I get it and know this must have been a sensation of much, MUCH grander proportion.

    but when I’m on my game, I’m cooking with gas.
    McDonalds catching up with you?

    I pulled over into the parking lot at the overlook. It was as though we had entered a completely different world.
    It really is. Incredibly beautiful and almost surreal.

    Perfection!

    Love this one with the lighting. Nice work!

    I ended up trying for 3 days before I finally found an availability for a family suite for two nights. Since we were arriving on a Tuesday, I grabbed those dates and then planned the rest of the trip so that those dates would work for us.
    Now I get it. Totally makes sense and I've done that with other vacays. You do what you gotta do.
     

    franandaj

    I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2009
    Huh? Oh, sorry. We were in the Central Valley again.
    Now that you know the agony, you can have pity on me when I say, "We're driving up to see my parents." Fran gets to do the drive through LA and over the Grapevine. Then we stop at someplace with a Starbucks and a bathroom and trade. I drive the 3-4 hours through the mind numbing scenery. Then we trade back and she drives over the mountain range back to the South San Jose/Gilroy area.

    It was obvious that this was the “back entrance” to the park, as we almost missed the entrance sign and had to turn around just to take a photo of it. They saved the nice signs for the other roads into the park.
    But sometimes the best entrance is the less traveled route!

    I wanted this to be our very first view of the Yosemite Valley.
    And I can totally see why! :worship:

    I was mesmerized. To the left, the vertical rock face is the famous El Capitan. It’s a 3,000-foot (914 m) sheer wall of granite that is popular with rock climbers all over the world. You might have chewed off a few fingernails watching a guy climb it bare-handed without ropes or equipment in Free Solo.
    I don't think I need to see that. I get freaked out when the tree trimmers come once a year and climb my palm trees. I have some very old palm trees in my yard.

    We waited for a while as the sun set and the shadows crept up the rock faces. We finally decided to leave when two busloads of tourists showed up to watch the sunset.
    Good choice.

    But given the location and the needs of my family, it was worth it. This was the best room we’ve ever had in a national park. Look at this space! It was like having our own clubhouse:
    That's a nice sized room, did two of the kids have to sleep on the couches?

    We could either eat at the high-end dining room (and order everyone $35 steaks)
    I'm glad we're just a party of two because that would have been my choice, and a lot more affordable than feeding six there.

    Well, folks...I had tried to finish up the bonus chapters on California before leaving on my summer vacation, but it's just not going to happen. So you'll have to wait on the edges of your seats for more Yosemite exploration when I get back.
    No worries, I'm enjoying the FB posts along the way...
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    Hi folks! Or at least the 3 of you remaining readers I have left! I'm back from our latest vacation and once again trying to avoid doing work. Before I can tell you about the latest trip, I need to finish this one, so I'll jump back into the responses.

    Have a great vacation and we expect to hear about this new vacation when you have time to write a report.
    Thanks! We had a very good time. Great weather for almost the whole trip.

    Just wait until your kids get a bit older, I'm planning on assigning the 16 & 17s to KP duty. :thumbsup2
    I like this plan! Let me know if you pull it off.

    For crying out loud, it was a golf clap! Who do you think you are? Tiger Woods getting triggered over the click of a camera???
    Quiet, or I'll send my caddy after you.

    That's the official story. The better story is that they closed it down because Carl Spackler had been brought in to deal with a little gopher problem.
    That's a much better story. Little varmints.

    You mean you hiked all that way in the blazing heat and missed batman??? What a waste.
    Batman would have made the story better, for sure.

    Probably a wise decision. You don't make many of those.
    Let's quote this for posterity, then.

    Ok... I'd nerd out on that. I know that's a pretty fertile region that raises diverse crops. I'd be looking at every field just to see what is growing and try to see how things are done differently from here. Kind of like the life size version of Living with the land.
    And even longer and more boring! :duck:

    I mean, uh, I'm sure you'd love it!:thumbsup2

    2 wonderful families! I'm glad you had the opportunity to meet them and that the boys were able to make noise and have fun!
    We had a really nice time meeting them. A fun dinner.

    That's a good display for size comparison. Space shuttle? Statue of Liberty? Those really help put it into perspective. But 20 elephants stacked on top of one another? Really? Has anyone ever seen that? How does that even help?
    I guess it's a curiosity more than anything.

    Nobody wants to walk around in wet shoes! Nicely done!
    That really is the worst. Wet socks, too.

    Tree huggers... :sad2:
    There's one in every crowd.

    So... you're saying it was a good nap and the film could have been just a bit longer?
    That...sounds very accurate, actually.

    Definitely a beautiful view. Good call on taking the back way in to see that!
    One of the most amazing sights I've ever seen, for sure.

    I know you always comment about when other people take photos they never frame it right. The background is always out of whack or they don't have everyone fully in the frame or something. But whoever took this one should be given a medal.

    That waterfall couldn't have been placed more perfectly!
    :rotfl::rotfl2::lmao:

    Definite sign to roll out!
    Nobody wants to hang out with the bus crowd.

    Got it. Instead of Scotty, this time it was "then lawyers happened."
    Which never ends well.

    Actually seems pretty reasonable for a room of that size, really anywhere. And it does look a lot nicer than most National Park lodges!
    It's the location that can't be beat. And the demand makes the price go up, of course. I felt like it was worth it, for that size room.
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    Meh. Do-able. Just sell a kidney or two. I fail to see the problem.
    I'll sell both, just to be safe. What could go wrong?

    And with a family of 6, you'll need at least two planes per trip.
    Yeah...I'm thinking this is for Julie and me when they're out of the house.

    Ah yes. Remember that one too.
    I'd like to forget it.

    That still bugs you, doesn't it. Leaves a bit of a sting on the soul, huh?
    :rotfl2:It's like an itch I just can't scratch.

    ::yes::

    I've been to Yellowstone... but that was (literally) over 45 years ago.
    Memory might be slightly fuzzy.
    Sounds like it's time to go back! Stay in the Old Faithful Inn if you do. Nothing else like it!

    What???? Where are the PB&Js????
    Well, this was a mid-afternoon snack. Just to hold off complaints from the back seat.

    Massive sign. You can't miss it.
    Like I did?

    :sad2:
    Some people are clueless.
    ::yes:: We ran into this phenomenon quite a bit in the Pacific Northwest.

    I read this and was so hoping you hadn't gotten that wrong.
    Well, thank goodness I didn't screw it up!

    Yuss!!!! Glad that worked out so well. So glad... I'd love to do the exact same thing.
    After having done it, that's the way I always want to enter the valley. It's incredible. Will be a favorite memory forever.

    Whoa... Coming from you... that's saying a lot.
    I try not to deal in hyperbole. This view lives up to the hype.

    I know that view! (but only from photos... lots of photos.)
    That's how I had only known it, too. It was worth seeking it out for myself.

    I am not a bit surprised. I mean... wow!
    ::yes::

    Need some help fixing those? Just let me know.
    Actually, yes! I know nothing about photo ediiting.

    Yeah, good timing.
    I was glad we found a parking space when we arrived.

    Indeed! Incredible!
    It's a special place.

    h! You're definitely selling this as a spring time visit.
    Well, there is a trade-off. The waterfalls are most spectacular in the spring, and the crowds aren't as bad. On the downside, all of the roads at the higher elevations (including spectacular Glacier Point) are likely going to be closed for snow. So you miss out on half the park.

    Wow! I mean... jaw drop wow!
    ::yes::

    I guess? You Yanks are weird.
    Lawyers mess up everything.

    Sounds like you were lucky to get that. Even with the pre-planning.
    Yeah, probably because there are only 6 of those rooms and I was trying for a weekend at the start. But it's definitely best to go for it as soon as the window opens for reservations.

    Nice! Tons of room!
    It was such a great room for us!
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    I love Joshua Tree! Why do you say you can't see anything new there? Curious!
    I don't know if you remember the time we visited it, but in summary: the road was all torn up, so we bumped on an unpaved road for 20 miles at low speed. We saw two Joshua trees in the park. Plus, we'd surprised the kids the day before by telling them we were on the way to Disneyland. So all of us wanted to be in Anaheim. We gave up and left the park. Then we saw tons of Joshua trees along the side of the interstate.

    My other fave!
    Saguaro was a nice one. Not too many people get down that way, though.

    Home of my birthplace!
    Yay!

    I know it's an extremely lame comparison, but I kinda felt that way when I saw Carsland for the first time at DLR when Alison took me through the "back entrance". So I get it and know this must have been a sensation of much, MUCH grander proportion.
    There are definitely ways to make an entrance that work much better than others.

    McDonalds catching up with you?
    It tends to do that. :rotfl:

    It really is. Incredibly beautiful and almost surreal.
    Just an amazing place.

    Perfection!
    ::yes::

    Love this one with the lighting. Nice work!
    Thanks! Julie gets credit for that one.

    Now I get it. Totally makes sense and I've done that with other vacays. You do what you gotta do.
    I'm just glad the rest of our plans could fit around it!

    Now that you know the agony, you can have pity on me when I say, "We're driving up to see my parents." Fran gets to do the drive through LA and over the Grapevine. Then we stop at someplace with a Starbucks and a bathroom and trade. I drive the 3-4 hours through the mind numbing scenery. Then we trade back and she drives over the mountain range back to the South San Jose/Gilroy area.
    How come she always gets all the fun?

    But sometimes the best entrance is the less traveled route!
    It sure was here!

    And I can totally see why! :worship:
    ::yes::

    I don't think I need to see that. I get freaked out when the tree trimmers come once a year and climb my palm trees. I have some very old palm trees in my yard.
    That movie was not for the faint of heart, for sure. Lots of vertigo-inducing shots.

    That's a nice sized room, did two of the kids have to sleep on the couches?
    Yes. But the couch pulled out into a bed, so that makes it ok. Much better than the floor.

    I'm glad we're just a party of two because that would have been my choice, and a lot more affordable than feeding six there.
    It's never easy fitting 6 into the budget. Especially when they have teen appetites!

    No worries, I'm enjoying the FB posts along the way...
    Hope it was a good show!
     

    pkondz

    . . Dis Dad #797 . . Hoping to get lucky
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    I'll sell both, just to be safe. What could go wrong?
    There's literally no downside, here.
    Yeah...I'm thinking this is for Julie and me when they're out of the house.
    ::yes::
    Sounds like it's time to go back! Stay in the Old Faithful Inn if you do. Nothing else like it!
    Okay! Got it!
    Well, this was a mid-afternoon snack. Just to hold off complaints from the back seat.
    Okay. I'll let it go this time.
    ::yes:: We ran into this phenomenon quite a bit in the Pacific Northwest.
    So you're saying everyone who lives in the PNW is clueless?
    I try not to deal in hyperbole. This view lives up to the hype.
    I'll say!!!
    That's how I had only known it, too. It was worth seeking it out for myself.
    I need to see this.
    Actually, yes! I know nothing about photo ediiting.
    PM me if you're serious.
    Well, there is a trade-off. The waterfalls are most spectacular in the spring, and the crowds aren't as bad. On the downside, all of the roads at the higher elevations (including spectacular Glacier Point) are likely going to be closed for snow. So you miss out on half the park.
    Hmmm... tough call.
     


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