Visit a National Park (Yosemite)

Sometimes you just have to get away to really get away… get away so you can leave behind the hustle and bustle, noise, pollution, rigors, and calamity of everyday life and work. Sure, a walk through the park or a hike on the nearby trail can be highly therapeutic, but sometimes you need that extra kick. I generally find the need for an extended vacation around the April or May time frame. It’s around this time of year when the day to day grind has me beat, and completely worn down. In order to recharge, I need to get away.

This year, I decided to visit Yosemite National Park in California. This massive park covers an area of over 700,000 acres with elevations rising over 13,000 ft. As soon as you drive through the entrance, you know you are entering a whole different world. A world where giant redwoods engulf, the enormous mountains challenge, and the profound natural beauty of it all delights. Once you get here, you can let go of your worries, and move at a much more relaxed, slow pace.

There are a ton of hiking trails to go on, massive waterfalls to visit, biking trails, museums, and so many more things to do. My favorite part of the trip was visiting the Mariposa Grove located near the South entrance. Having arrived through the Northwest entrance, I was already blown away by the sheer size and depth of the nearby forests. However, I really don’t think anything could have adequately prepared me for what I was about to encounter – the giant sequoia.

There are big trees, and then there are the giant sequoia.

Two of the trees found here, the Washington tree, and the Grizzly Giant are among the 30 largest giant sequoia in the world. You’ll know as soon as you start to approach them – the number of tourists and photographers will overwhelm the area, and you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a concert! I must have spent a few hours there myself, just gazing and marveling at these beautiful creatures (that are about 2000 to 3000 years young). Yes, standing next to such giants does help put things in perspective. Nature is just so inexplicably exquisite… elegant… a work of art. We really owe it to ourselves to take the time out and appreciate it more. These getaway trips are highly rewarding… and I do believe invigorating for the mind, body, spirit. Well, at the very least, it does make returning to work on Monday a whole lot easier than usual 🙂

 

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