Hetch Hetchy Reservoir & ValleyView All Sizes
JOURNAL : May 21, 2009
|Series||Motorcycling to Hetch Hetchy|
While staying at Hodgdon Meadow Campground we took the bike up to Hetch Hetchy Valley and walked the O'Shaughnessy Dam.
From the campground entrance we went a mile or so up the 120, then a right on Tioga Pass Road which becomes Evergreen Road until it hits the ranger station at the entrance to Hetch Hetchy valley. Just about everywhere in Yosemite National Park the roads are curvy, scenic and in fairly good, rideable condition. Though segments of Evergreen were patchy and many of these back roads have no lane dividers, this 36-mile round trip was epic.
A stop on the ride to Hetch Hetchy
For long distances at a time I was able to coast and let the fresh air and crisp sounds of the forest overwhelm the CBR600RR's shrill buzz. Awhile back I read up on electric motorcycles and almost decided to build one (and may still). This feeling of gliding nearly-silent suggested what the experience of riding an electric cycle might be like.
O’Shaughnessy Dam SpillwayView All Sizes
Hodgdon Meadow CampgroundView All Sizes
Right before the official entrance to Hetch Hetchy Valley is Evergreen Lodge which includes a variety of facilities like a general store, restaurant and accommodations. It's kinda like a small town up there.
Once past the station the road improves dramatically and it's a breezy ride down into the valley. All along the way are splendid views of the O'Shaughnessy Dam and the Tuolumne River below.
Hetch Hetchy Reservoir and O’Shaughnessy DamView All Sizes
We came in the early afternoon on a cloudy day and were chased back by pleasant rain and report of a local hailstorm. However we did have time to enjoy the magnificent scenery. An edifice remarkably similar to El Capitan stands stoically in the middle of the valley. Several waterfalls spilling into the reservoir resemble more famous falls down the way. Hetch Hetchy Valley is structurally similarly to its neighbor Yosemite Valley, only stopped up at one end and quite waterlogged.
Had we come earlier and prepared for more adventure we would have hiked around a bit. Unfortunately, dogs are not allowed anywhere in Hetch Hetchy, swimming, fishing and boating are prohibited. Other red tape blocks the natural proclivities commonly associated with Yosemite.
Hetch Hetchy Reservoir
Here the peaceful serenity of the lake and the stillness of ancient rock faces frame valuable reflection time. The stillness of Hetch Hetchy is a welcome relief from the hustle and bustle of Yosemite Valley.
About this day
May 21, 2009
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