Vernal and Nevada Falls in Winter

For our second day in Yosemite we wanted to hike to a waterfall.  The big questions was Upper Yosemite Falls or Vernal/Nevada Falls. We chose the later and it was quite the gorgeous hike.YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3899

We started from the parking lot at 8:45 and got back to the car at 5:45 with an hour spent at the top.

The mist trail was closed for the trek up through Vernal so we took the John Muir Trail which is also icy/snowy so crampons are a great idea for traction purposes. YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3901YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3903YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3908YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3910YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3911YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3916YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3917YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3918YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3921YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3924YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3928YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3931YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3937YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3942YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3947YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3961YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3964YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3970YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3973YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3978YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3985YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3988YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4014YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4015YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4016YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4025YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4030YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4036YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4037

Upon reaching the top of Nevada Falls it was HOT and we were in need of a cold brew!YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4039YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4040YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4048YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4017YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_4049

Even got a little snowshoeing in on top of Nevada Falls.YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3956

We estimated that with all the trail closures we hiked about 12.5 miles! Quite the bunz burn!YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3966

After our day of hiking we were famished SO we stopped in Mariposa at 1850 for a burger and beer!YosemiteVernalNevadaIMG_3935

Back to the Bay for the work week. Full of stoke!

Dewey Point Snowshoe – Yosemite

Get ready for a round of drool-worthy pics.

I love adventure and when my friend suggested a weekend trip to Yosemite I was all in.

It is rough.. the drive from Oakland to Yosemite Valley took a little less than 3.5 hours and that in itself is exhausting, but since all you have is Saturday and Sunday you are going to make the most of it and pack as much splendor in as you can during that time.

We had to take 140 since 120 and 41 were both closed. The National Park Service keeps an up to date record of road closures for your convenience. Make sure to check out this page before planning your trip as google maps will most likely not be updated.

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A short jaunt to check out Bridalveil Falls… gorge.YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3868

No trip to Yosemite is complete without a stop at Tunnel View… this view really will just stop you in your tracks … no selfie stick toting tourista can take away the magic, try as they might.YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3872YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3784

After our Tunnel View moment, we headed towards Badger Pass ( it has a new name now but I refuse to call it by that ).

Badger Pass has a dope snowshoe/ cross country ski trail. You can take this trail to Dewey Point which on a Saturday was so un-crowded it seemed like we were the only people out and about.

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We left Badger Pass area at noon and got back around 5 pm. We did take ample time, about an hour, at the vista for a summit beer and to enjoy the view.YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3885YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3795YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3878YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3887YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3854YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3861

Brought some Fieldwork cans for enjoying at the top.

This ceramic mug is an AMAZING creation of my friend, Ceramics Life For Me.

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Loved snowshoeing! This was my second time snowshoeing but this was my longest trip at 8 miles and the most in elevation gain, around 2000 feet. Challenging – but so worth it.YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3875YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3853YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3824YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3883YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3826YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3858YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3829YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3830

Don’t forget your gaiters! They will keep your legs nice and dry.YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3849

Went to the Bar at the Majestic Yosemite Lodge ( LOL ) for dinner. We just really needed a hot meal… we were sustaining off protein bars and homemade energy balls.YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3836

Had a Sierra Nevada Beer Camp and bowls of chili. Hit the spot.YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3837

Then on to Curry Village to enjoy one last beer for the night before turning in!YosemiteDeweyPointIMG_3896

Other resources for snowshoeing Dewey Point:

http://californiathroughmylens.com/snowshoeing-dewey-point

https://socalhiker.net/snowshoeing-to-dewey-point-in-yosemite/

https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/california/dewey-point-trail

http://lastingadventures.com/yosemite-day-hikes/snowshoe-badger-pass-dewey-point/

 

Favs on Friday : Food and Drinks

My fav mocha…. and I am not even a mocha person, but the mocha at Blue Bottle is made with tcho and is ohhh so good. Pair it with a waffle and you have a decadently sweet breakfast.bluebottle

My love affair with Firebrand continues. Not just a bakery – they serve up amazing breakfast and lunch fare… They also recently started serving beer and wine in the evenings. Need to check it out soon. firebrand

Another place I love every time I go but I just don’t go enough is Drake’s Dealership.  Went here for lunch and may have had a little too much to drink, but the beers were SO good. drakes

If you love German food head to Gaumenkitzel in Berkeley. This is my second time there and I LOVED it both times. Great for vegetarians and meat lovers alike with an extensive beer and wine menu. germanfood

Branching out from the East Bay for this last one! The Jug Shop on Polk in the City has an AMAZING selection of beer, liquor, and wine. They also put on wonderful tastings. My friend and I went there for a sour tasting and we were blown away by how extensive and delicious it was. As you can see I went home with quite a bit!! jugshopsourbeer

Enjoy!

West of Pecos : Tex-Mex gem in The Mission

With so many places to eat in San Francisco, I felt that the fact I had been to West of Pecos twice in the last month was reason enough to do a little post up here of it for others to become aware of ( if you weren’t already ) and enjoy!

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First time we went was on a Friday night where we sat at the bar and ordered food. Quick friendly service and fast.bar at west of pecos

We ordered the vegetarian puffy tacos and the artichoke – both amazing!fried artichoke and veg puffy taco

The cocktail options are plentiful … I love a nice mezcal drink but their marg/sangria slushy is a must try… they run out often so ask about it.

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The food is fresh and feels light and healthy while still being authenticly tex-mex… does that even make sense?

Bottom line its DELISH. and bonus if you go on Tuesday they have yummy tacos for 2.50, talk about a deal!

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The shishito peppers were a great app for the table to share!

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Side Note : This is a great spot for dinner if you are going to a show at the Chapel.

I plan to go back many times and often for their amazing combo of cocktails and great food.

(SLO)ME

Last weekend my friend and I took a trip from the Bay to the Central Coast. We lived together in SLO during college and were looking forward to a weekend of all our favorite SLO area things.

First stop Firestone, dinner and a flight were a must after nearly three hours in the car. Have really been loving the sours coming out of Firestone. firestoneflight

Next morning up and ready to go early, gotta get our Black Horse and SLO Donut Co. fix.  They even have gluten free donuts these days… so no excuses not to go!blackhorseandslodoco

Chels and I both had work to do in the morning but once the afternoon rolled around we were raring for a hike!  We found the Cuesta Ridge Botanical Hike and couldn’t believe we hadn’t done it before. Equal parts up and downhill but filled with epic views from start to finish!cuestabontanicalgardenimg_3387cuestabontanicalgardenimg_9152

Even waterfalls! cuestbotanicalgardentrail

A well deserved summit Brew! cuestabontanicalgardenimg_9155cuestabontanicalgardencuestridgetrail

Wooooweee does life getter better than these views! So amazing.cuestaridgetrail

What is my favorite thing to after a bunz busting hike? Drink a brew or two of course…

We headed to Bang the Drum Brewery. Great space, indoor and out. Really friendly staff and most importantly great beers!bangthedrumbbangthedrumbbrewingimg_3439

We went back to the hotel to freshen up before heading downtown for the night.

On our way DT we stopped at Central Coast Brewing for a couple baby beers.centralcoastbrewingimg_3444centralcoastbrewingimg_3443centralcoastbrewingimg_3445

Next stop, Barrelhouse Speakeasy. This is one of the coolest spaces I have ever been to. A fully functioning barbershop and then a full on taproom downstairs.

Super crowded on a Friday night but really fun.barrelhousespeakeasyimg_3446barrelhousespeakeasyimg_9202

Looking forward to sharing the rest of our weekend this week!

Sketch in the Park at the San Francisco Botanical Garden

Last Sunday, my friend and I woke up early and walked down to the Botanical Garden.  It was a rainy, overcast day but we found some clear spots to sit down and sketch for a while.

More and more I am trying to hobby up and not spend so much time on my computer or phone. img_3274img_3275img_3276img_3278

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Magnolias!

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We sat at this little bench and sketched for awhile. It started sprinkling on us but it was still all around magical.img_3290img_3292img_3293

Trying my hand at sketching! Not a professional but having a fun time.

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Really beautiful morning at the Botanical Gardens. Before 9 am you can get in for free. Once you are inside there is so much to see. The Magnolias this time of year are amazing and in the rain and fog the crowds are less but the flowers remain. Can’t wait to go back and improve my sketching!

Top Favs in Kota Kinabalu

During our adventures last Spring in Indonesia we decided to spend about five days in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia.

The truth is … you always need more time, but our few days there were filled with adventure. Making new friends, trying new foods and scuba diving for the first time to name a few!

We took boats to different islands and brought our own snorkel gear. Sapi was gorgeous and it was amazing to float in the water and see all the fishes swim by. islandlifeindo

KK has so many markets! Seeing Mango flavored cotton candy was a real dream!mangocottoncandymalasysia

We got bit by the Scuba Bug! Sooooo crazy/scary/coolscubadivinginmalaysia

Delicious meal – no silverware required! malaysiacurry

Frolicking in the Mangrove Forrest and sweating through our clothes.mangroveforestsabah

Sunset viewing with a beer in hand… no matter where you are it feels good to get these little moments.kotakinabalu-malaysia