“There can be nothing in the world more beautiful than the Yosemite, the groves of the giant sequoias and redwoods, the Canyon of the Colorado, the Canyon of the Yellowstone, the Three Tetons; and our people should see to it that they are preserved for their children and their children’s children forever, with their majestic beauty all unmarred.”
- Theodore Roosevelt
Once I first heard about government shutdown I couldn’t believe, I thought it was a joke. I was planing to spend a month in Yosemite and just after one week I had to move out. Angry on all those people playing their childish power games, those who once came into this land and took it by force and call themselves owners and administrators, those who have paved Valley floor and built a town inside…
I decided I will stay in Yosemite until all the mess sorts out. I left my tent on a campground with a note:
“I am on El Capitan. Will be back.”
My plan was simple: I would stay under the radar during the day, showing up at the camp after dusk. It turned out to be a really bad idea because on the first night park rangers paid me a visit. I used my acting skills and pretended I was asleep or away so in the result they didn’t bother to look inside the tent…
After this incident I found a cosy place in the forest and moved my tent there. Since then my time in the park was rather peaceful, I enjoyed a place without all those tourists and cars, read some books and perfected a route along the valley to get some daily dose of the internet, without being caught by the way.
(Yosemite Valley is a small town, 1500 people live and work there all year round to keep tourism machine going on. During the shutdown employees can use the most important facilities and this is how I got my internet).
Until yesterday. I woke up in the rain, somehow pleased to see the snow on the mountain tops. I realised that it was time for me to move on. Despite the fact I couldn’t see the end of Government Shutdown there was one more thing. Lack of tourists, low temperatures and snow high in the mountains made more bears come down to the valley and meeting one of them was just a matter of time.
I packed my stuff and started to hike… on my way out I stared at El Capitan wondering if I will see it soon. I pulled my thumb out and walked further down the road. In no time a car stopped and I was on the road again.