Skip to content

A Random Saturday Afternoon In Old Delhi

Still in the midst of a Delhi-based work project, I find myself once again in half-way across the planet, this being my third trip since August.  Throughout the project, colleagues here have continually encouraged me to arrive with sufficient time to wander the city.  While it would be easy to feel overwhelmed they warned, I was assured that any uncertainties would quickly cease I as made my way throughout this 5000 year old wonderland.

I’ve been anxious to spend dedicated time exploring India’s capital city, so when planning this trip I made sure to schedule a full weekend, allowing an opportunity to view more than my office, the hotel, and airport.

Having arrived late Friday night, Saturday I hired a driver and set out to explore three areas on my list – a combination of touristy and local attractions.

My first stop was Raj Ghat, a memorial to India’s famed Mahatma Gandhi.  Set amongst the center of a giant grassy park, Raj Ghat marks the site of Gandhi’s cremation the day following his assassination in January 1948.  Upon entering, visitors remove their shoes before navigating a series of footpaths leading to a giant marble platform, adjacent eternal flame.

Surrounded by acres of finely manicured lawns and giant sandstone enclosures, the area feels calm and serene.  It is easy forget about the incessant hustle and bustle outside these cozy confines.

Raj Ghat - site of Gahndi's cremation

Raj Ghat – site of Gandhi’s cremation

Vistors paying their respects at the memorial

visitors paying their respects at the memorial

From Raj Ghat, the driver brought me to Old Delhi, the symbolic heart of this metro area.  Mixed amongst elegant mosques and gardens, Old Delhi was once home to luxurious mansions of the Mughal dynasty elite.  These days, the area is extremely crowded and dilapidated, but very much still a center for commerce and fine street cuisine.

Because traffic in Old Delhi is a nightmare, I hired a rickshaw driver to take me to Red Fort.  An iconic symbol of India, the site holds deep historical significance and national pride.  Tradition dictates that every year on Independence Day (Aug-15), the Prime Minister hoist the national flag prior to addressing the nation from high atop the walled ramparts.

Red Fort

Red Fort

Red Fort

Red Fort

Colonnade surrounding Red Fort

Colonnade surrounding Red Fort

The grounds are massive and ornately detailed.  Impressive, really impressive.

DSCF0746

DSCF0747

DSCF0749

DSCF0756

DSCF0761 - Version 2

From Red Fort, I took another rickshaw to the far end of Old Delhi, where much of the street commerce is located.  If you are ever in Delhi, be sure to visit the old city.  I’ve never seen anything in America like it.

DSCF0773

DSCF0775

DSCF0783

DSCF0785

DSCF0779

DSCF0788

 

Visiting The Sierra Nevada Mountains

Over the years I have heard countless praise for the Eastern Sierras, but have never had a good opportunity to visit.  Specifically, I’ve been itching to spend time wandering the highly acclaimed Hwy 395 (California) corridor, which travels from suburban Los Angeles northbound through Oregon before terminating at the US-Canada border.   Over a distance roughly 560 miles, this scenic  byway boasts some of the most beautiful mountains in the west.

On the heels of a stay in Yosemite’s Tuolumne Meadows, our first stop was the popular Oh Ridge Campground, a national forest campground adjacent to June Lake.

Descending Tioga Pass

Descending Tioga Pass

I’d heard that the descent out of Yosemite along Tioga Pass can be a bit harrowing in tow.  As this was my first big mountain decent with the Airstream, 12 miles of mostly shoulder-less, steep grade with just enough sharp turns included had me sufficiently stressed out.  In end, the descent wasn’t too bad, but I was plenty happy to have that portion of the trip behind me.

Tioga Pass road officially ends at Hwy 395, but on a strong recommendation from my neighbor, we stopped a bit short of its termination point in order to spent a few hours hiking through Lee Vining Canyon.

Winding next to a small creek, the canyon trail connects a number of wonderful forest service campgrounds.  Primitive, quiet, solar-friendly, and offering cheap prices (especially if you have an interagency pass), these campgrounds are a jewel.  Given their close proximity to Yosemite’s east entrance, coupled with a fraction of the crowds, you can bet I’ll likely stay at one of these sites when I next visit Yosemite.

Lee Vining Canyon

Lee Vining Canyon

Lee Vining Canyon

Lee Vining Canyon

Lee Vining Canyon

Lee Vining Canyon

Brother-in-law Chris, Kelly, and Dave

Brother-in-law Chris, Kelly, and Dave

Arrival to Oh Ridge was about as easy as I could hope.  The park was nearly empty and excluding the handful of direct waterfront sites, we had our pick of the campground.  Oh Ridge is lovely and I’d highly recommend it as a “home base” for many excursions.  Within an hour’s drive to the north or south, many day hiking options are available across a wide variety of terrain.

Our Oh Ridge Campsite

Our Oh Ridge Campsite

Playing with Lilly in June Lake

Playing with Lilly in June Lake

Mono Lake

Mono Lake

Mono Lake

Mono Lake

Mono Lake

Mono Lake

Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes

Brodie Ghost Town

Bodie Ghost Town

Bodie Ghost Town

Bodie Ghost Town

Brodie Ghost Town

Bodie Ghost Town

Brodie Ghost Town

Bodie Ghost Town

Having concluded a few nights at Oh Ridge, it was time to push about 1.5hrs south to our boondocking site north of Bishop. Using social media insights from other bloggers, we narrowed into a section of BLM land and snagged a great site about 15 minutes north of town.

Bishop Boondocking Site

Bishop Boondocking Site

Bishop Boondocking Site

Bishop Boondocking Site

I’d heard a lot of good feedback regarding the town of Bishop, but I’m still not sure if I can give a strong endorsement.  That said, the surrounding area is A+ and for that reason, I’d highly recommend Bishop, less for the town, but more because of the abundant surrounding outdoor playland.

Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest

Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest

Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest

Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest

Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest

Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Tyee Lakes Trail

Also, there is a Ford dealer in Bishop, which provided me an opportunity to test-drive a new truck.  I was very pleasantly surprised with the ride quality of the new diesel-powered F-250, which now has me thinking upgrade …

Glen Aulin High Sierra Trail

The Glen Aulin trail leads to one of five High Sierra Campgrounds in the backcountry of Yosemite National Park.  Starting  from the east end of Tuolumne Meadows the trail follows the Tuolumne River downstream to the Glen Aulin campsite.

Just over 13 miles round-trip, the path starts next to small, colorful pools known as Soda Springs, before winding through rolling woodlands as the Tuolumne River winds across meadows, providing spectacular high country views.  Quickly, the trail transforms to a boulder-strewn granite slope, forming river falls, cascades and deep, clear pools, as the terrain on most sides becomes steep and mountainous.

The views are awesome.

DSCF0220 DSCF0223 DSCF0235 DSCF0247 DSCF0248 DSCF0252 DSCF0260 DSCF0262 DSCF0268 DSCF0266 DSCF0273

Tuolumne Meadows – Yosemite National Park

Last week Kelly and I spent a few days camping at Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite National Park, our second visit to this wonder nestled in California’s Sierra Nevada’s Mountain range.

Our spot 37A

Our spot A36

Open only during the summer and fall, the Tuolumne Meadows area is far less crowded than the very popular Yosemite Valley.  With fewer people come fewer amenities, resulting in a more rustic camp setting.

Tuolumne River next to our site

Tuolumne River next to our site

Tuolumne River, Lambert Dome in the distance

Tuolumne River, Lambert Dome in the distance

Dave / Kelly selfie at Tuolumne River

Dave / Kelly selfie at Tuolumne River

For the first few days we would be camping alongside fellow Airstreamers Advodna, before being joined by Kelly’s brother.  Having never camped with the Advodna crew, it was nice to spend a couple of days with them. With two small children in the mix, there were no epic hikes with them, but we did spend time relaxing at the campsite, walking dogs, sharing good eats (and beer).

My little pal, Advodna Wynne

My little pal, Advodna Wynne

Of course, the real catalyst for our visit to Yosemite was to spend some time hiking trails in a mountain setting.  Living steps from the ocean is fantastic for sure, but Kelly and I love the mountains and were excited to be at altitudes in between seven and ten thousand feet.  Once Kelly’s brother arrived, the hiking began in earnest and Yosemite in Autumn does not disappoint.

Chris, headed towards Dog Lake

Chris, headed towards Dog Lake

Kelly, Chris, and me wishing we had Kayaks

Kelly, Chris, and me at Dog Lake wishing we had Kayaks

Overlooking Tuolumne Meadow from the top of Lambert Dome

Overlooking Tuolumne Meadow from the top of Lambert Dome

Early morning frost at Tuolumne Meadow

Early morning frost at Tuolumne Meadow

DSCF0189 - Version 2

Ellery Lake

Tioga Pass as sunrise

Tioga Pass as sunrise

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 48 other followers