Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Work and Play

We enjoyed a get-away last week thanks to my husband's job.
He needed to travel about five hours north of where we live to another work site.
Instead of going up by himself and staying in a hotel we decided to go together in the RV.
That way, he had "home" to come to after work, he didn't have to eat at restaurants for every meal, and we were together.  Gas was paid for by his job to get there and back.  And, he saved his company money by not staying in a hotel.  So, it was great all the way around.  
And, we got a little time to relax and explore in a beautiful and peaceful area.

We made reservations and plans the week before. We were lucky to find a place near where he needed to work that had great reviews and space on the nights we needed.  And, it was just a few miles from the southern entrance to Sequoia National Park.  It was in the area of Three Rivers and Kaweah. The place we stayed was called, "Sequoia RV Ranch" and I will be adding rave reviews about this place as well.  It was a few miles off the highway, down a winding road with very few cars.   Our camp site was perfect (#52).  We had full hook-ups and our trailer was parked parallel to the river and under the shade of trees.  There were very few people there the first couple of days and the quiet and peacefulness were wonderful beyond words!  It was even nice when the park filled up over the weekend.  We rarely even heard airplanes.  It was great!

This is the view just outside our door...

We traveled up there on Tuesday, hubby worked on Wednesday and Thursday, 
and we drove up to Sequoia National Park on Friday.  We'd just been to the park last summer
but we went in through the northern entrance that also goes to King's Canyon.  
This time, we visited from the southern entrance.  So, this was all new scenery.
The road was very windy with gorgeous views around every turn.

At one point, I noticed something I'd never seen before and luckily there was a turnout to stop and check it out.  It's a flume!  I'd heard of them but never seen one.  This one is used to divert water to a power station nearby.  I believe it was built in the 1920's.  Here's where the river water runs into it...

And, here's a glimpse of it as it starts to head toward the power station...

 This is Moro Rock.  We climbed on it last summer.  HERE's a post about that trip.
While we were on top of it last summer we saw the winding road below that we drove on this time.  
It turned out to be much more curvy than it looked from up there.  And, Moro Rock looks so much bigger from below than it did when we were on top of it.  It's HUGE!

High season has yet to begin in the park.  So, some of the parking lots
and campgrounds were still closed.  Even the visitor center wasn't very busy.

 We decided to hike to Tokopah Falls.
We had the trail almost all to ourselves.

The trail meandered through the forest and along the Marble Fork of the Kaweah River.
I love the colors in the water. Beautiful!  The water was very cold!

Huge granite walls towered above us...

We enjoyed soaking up the gorgeous views.
That's my hubby!

The weather was perfect for hiking...around 50f degrees.
The sun was warm but it was chilly and cool in the shade.
There were patches of snow left over from the winter and a snow storm earlier in the week.

There were frozen waterfalls on the northern side of that huge granite wall...

Up near the Tokopah Falls, there were lots of small frozen waterfalls and ice icicles.

 As we neared the end of the enclosed canyon, we spotted Tokopah Falls.
It runs down from thousands of feet above.  We could see it cascading down and criss-crossing
from the saddle of the mountain down to the river.  If you look closely, you can see one of the
larger falls near the center of the photo, to the right of that tiny tree..

Here's a closer view...

And, even closer...

We climbed up onto some huge boulders near the falls and took in the views.
Here's a look down the canyon to where we started our hike...
That's one of the few other hikers that we saw that day sitting on the rock at the bottom.

Here's a view from the end of the canyon of that massive
granite rock that had frozen waterfalls on it.

Ahhh...what a beautiful day and a gorgeous place!  

We'd heard there were marmots in the area and we saw some!
This marmot was a few yards away from where we were sitting.

Isn't it cute?!

I whistled and he stood up.

Speaking of critters...there were a lot of beautiful birds in the park and at camp.
Lots of Blue Jays, Robins, bright yellow birds and Wood Peckers.
Lots of Wood Peckers.  And, evidently, they don't just peck holes in trees.
They must think this ranger building is a good thing to peck on too...

There were a lot of beautiful flowers.
Unfortunately, I only had our tiny, easy-to-hike-with camera with us that day.
I can't seem to get it to take good flower photos...the close up kind that I love to take.
So, I learned my lesson...I'm going to start carrying my big camera on hikes again.
I hate missing out on good flower photos!

But, here's what I got with the tiny camera that was decent.
There were two kinds of trees with purplish/pink flowers and they were loaded with blooms.
I only got a good photo of one kind though.

There was a tree near the entrance of the campground that was loaded with white blooms.
It was so pretty and buzzing with big bumble bees (I used my big camera for the next photos)...

Many of the trees are leafing out for Spring.
I like the heart shape of these...

 Tree hug!...

We sat near the river every evening and most of the day on Saturday enjoying 
the peaceful beauty that surrounded us.  Hubby read and I crocheted or knitted.
And, every night, I loved going to sleep to the gentle sounds of the river.  Ahhhh!

I did a little exploring in the nearby farming towns on one of the days that hubby was working.
I even found a great yarn shop!  I'll take some photos of the yarn I bought to put in my next post.

Thanks for stopping by!  :-)


Art and Sand said...

A trip down Memory Lane. Sequoia National Park was the first place I ever camped as a child.

KarenB said...

It's so beautiful! I was just looking at my pictures from March earlier today. The tree with the purple flowers is a Redbud tree. Odd name for a tree with purple flowers. But, it's distinctive. There is no other tree that blooms that same color. Maybe some tropical one, but not in our woods anywhere. Sounds like it was a very lovely get away!


Shirley said...

I have enjoyed reading your blog tonight and wanted to thank you for posting your pictures. It made me feel as though I was traveling right along with you. The scenery was beautiful. Have a wonderful day. Hugs and Prayers from your Missouri Friend.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful! What a great idea to make a holiday out of your husband's work trip. It looks blissful.

Deborah said...

Such lovely photos!! I enjoyed my virtual ride along!!

Sandra said...

What a great way to spend a business trip - much nicer than coming back to a sterile, lonely hotel room at night.

Susan said...

What a beautiful spot! And such a lovely post - thank you for sharing your work/holiday with us!

Quinn said...

I was in Sequoia a few years ago, and have been plotting my return ever since! Thank you for sharing such lovely images. Took me back!

BTW, I think I lost your blog (along with apparently a million others) during my recent tech fail with readers. Hopefully fixed now :)

lynn cockrell said...

Thanks so much for sharing some of the highlights of your trip to one of our wonderful national parks!

Beth said...

What a beautiful place! I really enjoyed your photos. I liked seeing the marmot too. I didn't know what they looked like, and now I do. Have a great wknd!