Dana and Sarah in a magical place - Yosemite National Park.

Dana and Sarah in a magical place – Yosemite National Park.

Sometimes the most magical places are those you haven’t traveled…

Many times we are quick to judge or make assumptions based on what we read, see, or hear about.  Well, that was certainly the case with me and Yosemite National Park.  My assumptions:

  • It would be overcrowded.
  • There would not be hotels we were comfortable staying at.
  • I wouldn’t really get to see the magic I see on postcards.
  • It would take forever to get there.
  • Tourists would not respect the land.
  • Once we got there, it would be an in and out in a day .
  • There wouldn’t be any good food.


I fell in love and I mean hard!  Really disappointed in myself for not yet bringing my twins here and upset that my love, David, is not here to experience Yosemite with me – no offense to Sarah, who has been a great traveling companion.

In the coming weeks, I will write about the hotels, food, exploring, and so much more that I learned, but for now, here are why my assumptions were wrong, way wrong!

  • While yes, Yosemite gets crowded in the summer months and our guide explained that there are times to help reduce traffic, busses are used to move people around the park.  However, if you can take advantage of them, Yosemite has down times.  I hesitate to say off seasons, just less visited seasons like fall and spring.  I will definitely be back to see a winter,  I hear it is amazing and for my husband to flyfish.
  • The hotel choices are plentiful and offer something for all.  On our short stay, we were at the Tenaya Lodge, which is beautiful, but in the middle of major renovations that are scheduled to wrap up in 2016.  The new rooms are beautiful, full of luxurious touches, and have wonderful products, including sheets I didn’t want to get out of.


    My room at Tenaya Lodge, Yosemite National Park.

  • I ended up seeing the magic all around me and had a smile on my face most of the time!

    An elephant eating at Cathedral Rock in Yosemite National Park.

    Seeing the magic at Cathedral Rock in Yosemite National Park. Does it look like an elephant to you?

  • I live in Omaha and we don’t have a huge airport, so we need to connect when flying, but this was an easy trip.  Quick ride to Phoenix; on to Fresno; and then a short, beautiful drive – about 1.5 hours – to Yosemite.  I left my house at 4:30AM and was at the spa by 3PM, and that was with a 2.5 hour brunch on the way AND a wine tasting thrown in just because….
  • Yosemite is like sacred ground.  People were kind, peaceful,l and so respectful.  There is a true feeling of awe.
  • My stay at Yosemite was a short 2 nights, but my next trip will be about 5-7!
  • And the food…Just you wait for that full report – from the Elderberry House to the Tenaya Lodge to the Awahanee – I was pleased AND impressed.

    photo 2-35

    Just a sampling of the food…..Yosemite National Park.

So, until more later, be sure to follow my travels on twitter, Facebook, and Instagram