September 2015 trip to Yosemite, Death Valley, Monterey and San Francisco
with Jackie's sister and husband
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the Valley & Tuolumne Grove
Jackie's sister Linda, and her husband Hans had not been to California or the Southwest, so we planned a trip as a first introduction to the region.

We had a great outer loop campsite in Upper Pines, got tents all set up and began to explore

With soft pine needles, you can just lie down for an after lunch rest, as this guy did, in a mix of sun and shade
We had time to take a short hike on the Yosemite Falls trail up to Columbia Rock, watched the sun start down, and got back to the valley before it was really dark.
Breakfast next morning, then off to Happy Isles for a hike up past Vernal Fall to the top of Nevada Fall.
Vernal Fall flowing well -lots of big up-steps but great views.
Up past Vernal Fall, looking down on the Emerald Pools just above the falls. Now it's up to Nevada.
After luch at the top of Nevada Fall, we set off into the trees, going back down on part of the John Muir Trail.
"But I don't wanna go down!"
Liberty Cap across the Falls with Half Dome out of view to the left
Ahhh...there's Half Dome as well, to the right of Liberty Cap!
Down into the Valley, and Tuolumne Grove
Landing in San Francisco, we fetched our rental SUV and headed for Research Ave in Fremont to our motel. However, we ended up immediately bailing out of that one on account of a failed bedbug check - and found a much better place near Pleasonton, just over the Sunol Grade heading northeast. After a good breakfast, and some supplies, we headed out on a sunny day for Yosemite.
Linda, Hans and Jackie with Half Dome in the background on a sunny first day.