In the midst of tucking the final necessities into my suitcase, I watched in horror and sadness, as the most recent tragedy unfolded from Dallas, Texas on the tv screen. This anger and hatred seems to be everywhere now dividing our country and world more each day.
Not wanting to turn a blind eye to reality, I was really looking forward to seeking out some beauty among all of this ugliness. Beauty in the form of two of our American national parks.
We began our ten day journey in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park.
In a matter of moments after our arrival, we were captured by the beauty to be found in every direction. The air was fresh and slightly crisp. Such a welcome change from the heat and humidity of North Carolina.
All through the day people were offering to take a picture of the two of us and also asking for us to take their group pictures. It seems that nobody wanted to miss out on the chance to be included in photos with these breathtaking backgrounds.
At one point in the journey the park ranger tiptoed up to us and requested that we be as quiet as possible. Seems as though mama bear and her cub were having playtime and she didn't want us to disturb them. She did say that photos were okay so I seized that opportunity.
Looking up... way, way up to the top of these giant sequoia trees I pondered how long they had been growing. Some of them are 2000 years old. I thought about all of the changes that have taken place in that time.
Time spent by this waterfall was time well spent.
Far from a gentle trickle, this water gushed out at a fast pace.
Still there is something so soothing about water flowing in a natural surrounding like this.
*** America, the beautiful ***
As we made our way out of the park, I was captured by the water rushing over the rocks at the base of the mountains. So glad the driver offered to stop here for a spell.
Also glad that Brett was the driver as my knees would have been knocking on roads like these.
Day two found us enjoying the sights at Yosemite National Park.
This year is the 100th anniversary of the National Park System. The attendance at Yosemite was a reflection of this celebration.
We saw a lot more traffic here, but it was easy to see why.
An abundance of natural beauty.
As far as the eye could see.
At one point in the day, I sat down on one of the strong rocks beneath the ancient trees. I closed my eyes and breathed in a deep breath of fresh air and I prayed that all the world could know the peace I was feeling at that very moment.