I absolutely love camping, but it’s been a couple of years since I’ve had the time to get a trip together. We’ve lived on the west coast for 5 1/2 years but I had never been to Yosemite, so about 6 months ago, I logged on to recreation.gov to see if there was a campsite available for this fall. Yosemite is notorious for booking up fast, and the busy season starts to slow down in September, so I was lucky to be able to find a site in the Wawona Campground for October. I booked it before I even asked for the time off of work or told my husband about my idea. Campsites for a weekend are relatively inexpensive, so I figured if it didn’t work out, I wasn’t that big of a loss. I just didn’t want to risk missing the opportunity. Luckily, all the stars aligned and we were able to make the trip.

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Now we’re back, and I’m writing to tell you about how freaking amazing it was. It took us several hours to get from the Bay Area down to Yosemite, but once we got close, the drive was so pretty. We arrived in our campground during the early afternoon and set up camp. We brought along an air mattress since we were car camping. The air mattress proved useless. It deflated both nights. Luckily, we had several thick and comfy blankets to help keep us warm, as well as warm pajamas and layers.

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One of the most aw-inspiring things I love about camping is the night sky. No light pollution. Just a crystal clear view of the stars. How could you not feel centered and peaceful looking at that.

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We, of course, made s’mores every night. But I guess we needed some real food too, so we roasted hot dogs one night, and grilled burgers the next. We had bacon, egg, and cheese sandwiches from the grill for breakfast. And we brought sandwich making supplies, granola bars, and chips for hiking around during the day.

On Saturday, our only full day in the park, we took a drive up to Glacier Point. Man, was that an amazing view. People had told me all about it, but the most vivid description in the world could not prepare me for that view.

From there, we drove into the valley, and after a tedious search for parking, we hiked to Mirror Lake. If I had done a little more research ahead of time, I would have realized that Mirror Lake was going to be dry this time of year. The hike was still lovely, despite the surprise at the lake.

If you’re planning to camp in Yosemite, and specifically the Wawona Campground, nearby there is a gas station and a general store with firewood as well as bags of ice, food supplies and snacks, camping supplies, and souvenirs. This is where we got our firewood. Also, there is a bathroom with running water and toilets at the campground.

This was truly an awesome camping trip, and I can’t wait to visit Yosemite again.