Sunday, September 4, 2011


This got really long but I didn't want to leave out any details. You can just look at the pictures if you want. Thanks for stopping over.

So we headed out on Sunday morning for our annual trip to Mammoth Lakes, CA. I always have to say a few prayers and bite my tongue. The route along 395 can be very challenging for Mark.There are a lot of sections that are only two lane highways, twisting, turning and rolling terrain. Of course you can't possibly be behind a truck or motor home who is only traveling 60 in a 65 zone that Mark wants to drive closer to 80 in! Lots of tension in the car but we manage to live through it each year.

We always stop in Bishop to get our bread at Schat's Bakery and our jerky at Mahogany Meats. Bishop also as the cutest little Indian Casino which Mark will usually let me stop at for an hour on our way home. Well this year he wanted to get home as early as possible the next Sunday since he was flying to DC the next morning. So here is what we did, he dropped me off at the Casino and then he went back to buy all the goodies. It was a perfect plan!

The weekend we go to Mammoth Lakes is the weekend of an annual Art Fair. Years ago we had a cabin that rented Saturday to Saturday, the cabin we now stay in is a Sunday to Sunday so if we don't see the Art Fair that day it's over. Well Mark is not a huge fan of any kind of fair so getting him to stop for me to go is always up for conversations each year! So since things went so well in Bishop I thought I would come up with a plan for the Mammoth Lakes Art Fair that would work for both of us. Mark dropped me off at the Art Fair, walked around a little bit and then he took off to do the grocery shopping for the week while I continued to walk the fair. It worked out great only I have to admit I wish he would enjoy these things with me.

Got all settled into the cabin, unpacked the groceries, suitcases and settled in to relax with a good book. I finished reading Heaven is For Real which I started when we went to Europe. I read so slow. Mark will read three books to my one! I also managed to read Water for Elephants which had me from the first page and then I started a Danielle Steel book called Happy Birthday.

Mark and I will play two games of scrabble each night which I love. I think he won almost all the games this year! I was just telling him the other day that I miss those times in Mammoth with him and we need to do this at home sometime.

The elevation of Mammoth Lakes is around 7,900 ft high and it takes time for my lungs to adjust. Actually it takes time for most people to adjust and Mark usually will not hike for a day or two. Well this year I never quite adjusted. I was really bummed because I really wanted to go out and walk around each day but I couldn't. I have know my limitations for years but after walking all over the place in Europe I was hopeful that maybe I could do a little more this year. I am actually fine with reading, listening to the radio and sitting out on the deck. (I'm not looking for pity on this one.) There is only one radio station and we have been enjoying it for years.

Mark has several hikes he likes to take each year. This year Mammoth Lakes had record amounts of snow so there was snow along many of the trails and the lakes were high. He saved the hardest one for later in the week. That would be the Crystal Greg hike which goes up behind our cabin. Speaking of the snow we found out that our cabin was the last one to open this year and wasn't rented out until July 9th because it had been totally covered in snow. We were there on August 10th! Crystal Lake is where we want our ashes to go. In this area in Mammoth Lakes Crystal Lake is the highest. It runs down into Lake George which is were the cabin we stay in is. Lake George runs into Lake Mary, Lake Mary into Lake Mamie and then it runs into the Twin Lakes.

Wednesday we took a ride to Yosemite. This was a long day but definitely worth it. We hadn't been there in several years and just wanted to ride around. Some of the views seemed hazy and when we got out of the car we could smell the smoke. There was a fire going on one of the mountain tops. I am always attracted to wildflowers and Mark was pretty great about stopping for me. (Thanks Honey) Again, because of the snow there were beautiful things to see like the waterfalls. they were just exploding this year.

Bridalveil Falls, Yosemite Falls, not sure on the others.

Many years ago we had gone to see the Redwood trees that are in Yosemite. We drove over to the area of the hike but it had changed over the years. You use to be able to get closer to them. This was a mile hike downhill and fairly steep. I wanted to give it a try because I love the Redwood trees but I had to stop. As I looked back I realized that I would never get back up that hill once we reached the trees. It was a paved road which is easier then a trail in the woods but I just knew I couldn't do it. I gave Mark my point & shoot and he continued down to the trees. When he got back he told me it was actually pretty hard on him coming back up and where I had stopped was only 1/3 of the way there. I made it back up the hill stopping and catching my breathe every chance I got!

We had stopped that morning to pick up fresh bread at the Schat's Bakery in town. I just love eating sandwiches on this vacation. Mark made some awesome eggs and sausages a few mornings which were so delicious. I like to make a sandwich between toast with an over easy egg sprinkled with cheese!

Thursday is when Mark took his hike up to Crystal Greg. I sent my camera along with him. I decided that it's been too long since I've seen it and wanted him to take pictures. It was so cute because he came back with about 120 pictures. He never takes pictures and was capturing all that he could for me. There was lots of snow up there this year. Several years back Mark and the kids took a hike up there and ended up doing something they should not have done. They went off the beaten path and put themselves into a dangerous spot. Thank God they were all safe and they all learned a huge lesson about staying on the trail. I wondered why I was so drawn to praying for them during that day while they were gone.

The area behind the water where you see all the snow is pretty loose stone. That is what they hiked up on that year. Just like the one waterfall in Yosemite where those boys died this year. They had gone off the path and they were not so lucky.

Friday was a great day as we waited for Adam and Tristen to arrive and join us for two nights. We ended up going back to town and having some awesome pizza. We also did some shopping in town at the tiny outlet mall. Then we went for ice cream at The Villages in Mammoth Lakes which is newer and definitely designed for Winter skiers. We also drove around a little bit to find the hotel that they were staying at Sunday night. They stayed at the Westin and enjoyed their Sunday while we headed home. We played scrabble and had a very nice evening.

So on Saturday after a great breakfast made by Mark we drove around a little bit and made a few stops as we headed up to the top of Mammoth Lakes mountain where the main skiing happens. We stopped off at the earthquake fault and also a view destination which is where we go to watch the meteor showers. This year we headed up there on Saturday evening but the full moon was just too bright to see the showers this year. So back to what we did on Mammoth Mtn., we took the gondola ride to the top. All these years and we had never done this before. What they do in the summer is bike ride down the ski slops. The ride we took for $29. each included a great lunch. OMG this was so much fun and it was a beautiful view at the top of the +11,000 feet mountain top.

After the gondola ride we took a scenic loop over to 395 and headed over to Mono Lake. We also stopped for an ice cream cone although only Adam had a cone, Mark, Tristen and I got delicious root beer floats. Then we stopped over at Penny Pines to see how the forest was growing. That is where I gave a donation for our friends son Eric who passed away in 2000. The smaller trees in the background are those trees that were planted. They were just like the little one 11 years ago. Then we went back to the cabin and had a nice evening. We played bunko and just enjoyed each others company.

Sunday morning we go up and cleaned the cabin. That means vacuuming the rugs, mopping the floors and just making sure all the dishes are cleaned, put away, frig emptied and trash taken out. We headed out around 9:30. Adam and Tristen went to breakfast and then checked into their hotel. They relaxed by the pool all day. Mark and I drove home arriving around 4:30 in the afternoon. We had made a stop in Bishop for some bread/cookies for Amber and Dylan. Of course we stopped for the restroom too along the way. Traffic can be heavy on 395 and Mark always swears he is never doing it again. He was pretty frustrated with the trucks and motor homes on the two lane road. It felt good to be home and I look forward to our trip next year.

Just love seeing plants growing through the rocks.


I adore the new little pine trees that are growing.

Always attracted to the dead trees.

Until next year.....


Cherie said...

I didn't realize Mammoth was so close to Yosemite - How fun that you were able to enjoy both places.

Your pictures are gorgeous!

That is fun that you and your hubby play two games of Scrabble each night. We love to play games too. Next time you'll have to beat him more (wink!).

Kathy ... better known as Nana said...

Lovely pictures.

I didn't realize that Yosemite was so close ... I'd love to go to Yosemite some day. We saw the Redwood National Forest in northern California a couple of years ago, and I sure would love to see the redwoods in Yosemite, too. In the meantime, I'll just enjoy your photos! Thanks for sharing.

Do you play scrabble just while traveling? I need to find something special for DH & I to do in the evenings when we travel. ;-)

Anonymous said...

Good morning Mrs Debby, stopping in before Church :)
Hope you have a Blessed Sunday...

EmptyNester said...

Those are amazing pictures! I enjoyed them very much! Hubs has been to Mammoth Lakes. I have seen the Redwood trees. When I saw them I was only 12 and most of the pictures of our entire trip that I took were of those trees. I was fascinated by them and I still am!

If you like Scrabble, have you tried Banana Grams? That's a fun one too! We play both around here!

Great trip! Thanks for sharing! Oh, I'm seriously thinking of asking the DR for Valium or something for the next car trip we take with Hubs driving. I feel your pain. LOL

A multi-dimensional life said...

Your description of your trip and your photos make me want to be there! It seems like a refreshing time away! xo

Love Of Quilts said...

You and your hubby sure do it right..most of us could only dream of taking these trips. I am glad to get to see these places threw your great photos. Trish

secret agent woman said...

We took the kids to Yosemite several years ago and stayed a few days. It brought back wonderful memories from me of childhood trips there.

Lynn said...

Your photographs are beautiful! I know what you mean about the elevation. It bothers me more and more every year. In June when we were at Tahoe, I sounded like Darth Vador.
Sucks to get old!

Caroline said...

Beautiful & I would love to go there someday. Our neighbors when there this weekend.

Amy said...

what an amazing place to vacation.. How much fun and lots to do and look at.. I would just love to sit and read a book up there..

Happy Labor Day..

Joanne said...

As always your pictures are awesome. That view from the Gondola must have been breathtaking! Though I must admit I would have been a bit nervous...I'm afraid of hieghts.
Great post!
Blessings, Joanne

Trish said...

Sounds like a wonderful trip Debby...the photo's are amazing!
I, love going back to familiar places...where we can enjoy our favorite bakeries, shops, fairs and such. Perfection, my friend.

LynnMarie said...

What beautiful photos - thanks for sharing. I would love to drive my car through a tree!! How cool would that be? Have a great weekend.

xinex said...

What a picturesque place, Debby. The sceneries are just breathtaking. John and I climbed the Yosemite once and I could not walk for a week after that, lol....Christine

Colleen - the AmAzINg Mrs. B said...

Wow! Your photos are amazing..I feel like I've been there with you! Thanks for taking us all along :-)

Garden of Egan said...

Beautiful pictures.
What a great trip! I've never been there but you sure made me want to go.
I love pine trees.
I also love flowers growing through rocks.

Deb said...

what an incredible the photos...

Brandy@YDK said...

sounds perfect. i love playing board games but my husband isn't a fan.

Kerri said...

my comment got deleted :(

loved the pictures!! it is soo pretty there
i would love to do that lunch/ride thing
sounds like a fun place

Alexis AKA MOM said...

Mark sounds so much like Rick with the cars and the stopping of at the art far. I so understand the want for them to be apart and like some of the things we like :).

Glad you got to do the casino while he was able to do the shopping really is a perfect plan.

Super fun to take in the sights at Yosemite also, I so want to do that!

Your pour lungs :(

Egg sandwiches of course are a hit here too. Cole must have one each day before school.

And of course a party with Pizza wouldn't be :)

I made the boys Rootbeer floats on Tuesday, we of course ended up with all the neighborhood kids showed up for one too .. lol

What a fun trip and even playing games with Mark sounds like a great time!

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