I've experienced all four seasons in Yosemite National Park, but winter is by far my favorite time of the year to visit. You can't access Olmsted Point or Cathedral Peak due to the Tioga Pass closure, but the fog and raging waterfalls almost make up for missing out on those spots. A dusting of snow turns the valley into pure magic, and with the absence of summer crowds, you might just feel like you have the whole place to yourself.
I teamed up with Visit California and Tenaya Lodge to host an Instameet at Badger Pass yesterday, and we couldn't have scheduled this adventure at a better time. Badger Pass reaches an elevation of 8,000 feet, and it's only one of three lift-serviced ski areas operating in a national park in the United States. After a sprinkling of snow a few days earlier, Yosemite was hit with a full-on blizzard this weekend. Flakes started falling from the sky about ten minutes after we strapped on our snowshoes, and in between marveling at the landscape and snapping a few photos, I had the pleasure of meeting a number of awesome new people.
After a few nights in the super luxe Tenaya Lodge, I stayed in a heated tent cabin in Curry Village, which is truly the best way to "rough it" in Yosemite during the colder months. Earlier in the week I hiked part of the Four Mile Trail with a friend, but we decided to turn around about half a mile before we hit Union Point, which marks the official endpoint for the trail during the winter. There were a number of landslides on the trail, and with a potential storm moving in, neither of us wanted to get stuck on the side of the mountain.
Who knows what the precipitation will be like next winter, but if it's anything like the past few months, there's a good chance I'm just going to move here when November rolls around...