Usually I do all of my traveling during off-season but I had the opportunity this September to do a 5-day hiking/camping trip with a friend that I just couldn't pass up. Although it was 30 degrees and absolutely freezing at night, we had the most beautiful weather during the days for exploring! It was an epic adventure and truly a trip of a lifetime. I'll share a few favorite memories of the trip briefly here, but will then let the photos do most of the talking.

One of my favorite memories included waking up every morning and having coffee at Glacier Point. It quickly became our daily tradition, especially because the sunrise was so beautiful at that spot and there was hardly anybody ever there. ALL of the exploring and hiking we did was incredible. Although we didn't end up getting the lottery permit to do Half Dome this time, we found adventure in several other places. Some of my favorite spots include Taft Point, Ostrander Lake, Merced Grove, Vernal Falls, Glacier Point, and Cloud's Rest.

Cloud's Rest was by far the most difficult hike that I've ever done in my entire life. It was a 14.5 mile, strenuous hike and I never thought I was terrified of heights until I got to the top of Cloud's Rest. It sits at 9,926 feet (1k feet higher than Half Dome), and has phenomenal panoramic views.

Besides the breathtaking scenery, some other favorite memories also include bagging our day plans one day and helping a family that was stranded on the side of the road, randomly taking photos of a proposal at Taft Point and making good friends with them, and capturing an elopement another night also at Taft Point. We had such a great week in Yosemite and I feel so blessed with the people that we got to meet!

Between the people I met, getting to explore with my friend Gerry for a week straight, the personal records that I broke, the things that I learned, the laughs that made my tummy hurt, I think it's pretty safe to say that Yosemite is one of my happy places. Obsessed.

If you haven't seen the cool photo opportunities I randomly stumbled upon during my time in Yosemite, check them out there:

Alex and Kris' Proposal Story

Charley and Elle's Taft Point Elopement