We’re fortunate. We visit Yosemite National Park four or so times every year. This past weekend, we went to the park to celebrate our ten-year wedding anniversary. We stayed at a family cabin in Yosemite West, which is in the park, but technically outside the park. We were allowed to go to the cabin, but we weren’t allowed to stop along any of the roads on our way to the cabin. All campgrounds were empty. Any pull-off with a view was roped off. Park employees were allowed in the Valley, but no-one else.
Again, we’re fortunate. This wasn’t a once-in-a-lifetime trip we’ve been planning for years. We saw Australians, Europeans, Asians…. people from all over the world, who had come to Yosemite only to be turned away, or to be allowed to drive on through without stopping. No hiking. No camping. No picnicking. Nothing. This is what the most popular view of the park looks like now….
I can’t imagine the disappointment. The frustration. The anger that many park visitors must be feeling. Not just here, but at Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon, Alcatraz, at all National Parks across the United States.
Maybe the government wouldn’t let anyone stop to recreate, but at least it can’t prevent visitors from enjoying the gorgeous views…
Ten years ago this week, my husband and I were married at Glacier Point, in the evening, as the sun set behind us and the full harvest moon rose over the mountains in front of us. This week, due to the government shutdown, the road to Glacier Point is closed. We were able to have our dream wedding. We have the memories and the photos. I feel for those who had their plans canceled. No, we weren’t able to sit at Glacier Point and celebrate as we have in past years. But we’ll be there again.