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Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park







Description of Yosemite National Park

Location: Tuolumne, Mariposa, Madera Counties  Map

Area: 761,266 acres (308,073 ha)

Yosemite National Park is located in Tuolumne, Mariposa, Madera Counties of California in United States. Yosemite National Park covers an area of 761,266 acres (308,073 ha). Yosemite National Park is a nature preserve in the Western Sierra Nevada, California. Magnificent panorama of virgin forests, lakes, magnificent waterfall and picturesque cliffs make it one of the most popular protected areas in USA. Water from melted glaciers and rivers feed the Merced River that dived the valley below.
Archeological artifacts discovered in the Yosemite Valley indicate that first people settled these lands 8,000- 10,000 years ago. They called their beautiful valley Ahwahnee, and themselves Ahwahneechee or "dwellers of Ahwahnee". First European American settlers came here in the 1830's, while first detailed study of these territories were undertaken 20 years later. Thousands of people flocked to area of Yosemite National Park when gold was discovered here. Obviously these influx of greedy and somewhat rude newcomers didn't sit well with Native American population so a war broke out that became known as Mariposa Wars. Eventually Mariposa Battalions (California militia of California) drove Ahwahneechee from their native lands and business started to take over these lands.
Increased movement of people to this beautiful lands got attention of social activists who urged the government to protected this beautiful land against human development. Eventually the was introduced by Galen Clark and Senator John Congress. The bill for a Yosemite Grant was passed by both houses of the 38th United States Congress. It might be strange today, but back in the day Congress actually pass things despite a Civil War that was raging at the time. Yosemite National Park became a protected area on June 30, 1864 after it was signed by President Abraham Lincoln into law.




Horsetail Waterfall (Yosemite National Park)


Horsetail Waterfall is one of the most famous landmarks in the Yosemite valley. It falls from a cliff on the eastern slope of El Capitan mountain. It is not extremely high or powerful, but in combination with a Yosemite Valley it is one of most recognizable landscapes in the Western United States. The best time to see it is in late winter and spring when the water stream is the strongest due to melting snow and ice. You can hear the noise of falling water for several miles in all direction. However, by early summer waterfall dwindles and is barely visible from a viewing area.


Horsetail Waterfall is commonly visited in February by people who want to snap a photo of a famous "Fire Fall". This nickname was coined by photographer Galen Rowell who took a picture in late winter. Falling water was hit by setting sun, giving water its distinct orange appearance that looked like a flowing lava. Famous photographer didn't specify the exact location or time of the day when he made his famous image, but many people come in hopes to catch a similar breathtaking view.

El Capital (Yosemite National Park)

Yosemite National Park is a popular destination for mountain climbers and especially El Capital stands out among other peaks. It is a granite cliff that reaches a height of 2,307 meters. Horsetail Waterfall flows from the eastern slope of the mountain.


The Great Wall was viewed as impossible to climb just several decades ago, but several dare devils disproved this point of view. Camp 4 is located at the base of the ascent where climbers prepare for their climb of El Capitan. In addition to those who climb up, this cliff became popular among those who try to jump down. Base jumpers also use this cliff or their jumps into Yosemite Valley below.






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