High Sierra of Yosemite can almost blind you


One the road to Tuolomne Meadows in Yosemite, a white granite panorama.

The Sierra of California were always a mountain range i wanted to see, years and years before I finally cycled into them in 1982. They were well worth the wait. They are most unusual in that, being granite, they are a very white color, which makes them brilliant and cheerful in the noonday sun. Darker volcanic or metamorphic rocks do not have the same flair. This picture really does not do them justice, for between the need to stop the lens down and the vagaries of the digitalization process, alot of the whiteness is lost. I almost had continuously squint on this stretch of road, over 9000 feet high en route to Tioga pass. Definitely see this part of the park, in addition to the crowded Yosemite valley further below.

After Tioga pass, given the tilted-slope nature of the Sierra you have a screaming descent to the town of Lee Vining below, on Mono Lake. So many cars lean heavy on their brakes you can smell the burning linings. Mono Lake is another victim of the insatiable thirst for water, electrical and political power further south; growing smaller and saltier every year as tributaries are diverted for other uses.
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