Today was the first day I’ve had energy to spare in quite a while. Plagued by a rare migraine and its residual headaches and lethargy without the luxury of being able to afford a sick day in this vortex of deadlines, to wake up refreshed this morning (on my only day off this week, no less) could only mean the day was destined for something amazing.
Some time back, I’d heard there was a climbers’ trail up to the Ribbon Fall amphitheater. And there is. The trail is unmarked except for an inconspicuous cairn hiding behind a boulder surrounded by manzanitas back beyond the woodlot. Even with those vague directions, it was surprisingly quick to locate. Once on the trail, it is well-traveled and cairned enough to easily follow. Steep, a little bouldery, mosquito-infested, super quiet (a nice treat after a 15 minute wait to get in the park gate). When you suddenly pop out into the amphitheater, you’re greeted not only with a close-up of Ribbon and an easy boulderhop over to the base, but you’re also looking out at El Capitan and across the Valley, level with the top of Bridalveil Fall.
This experience was beyond beautiful. I wouldn’t need a reason other than that to go back. But I do have one: completely forgot to seek out the bell that’s supposed to be mounted on a pine tree up there in memory of someone. Another day…
I love that, even after more than four years of living in Yosemite, I still have new places to explore.