Saturday, April 19, 2008

Under the Volcano: Changing the Emphasis -Part 4

Continuing a series of exercises on observing the generally unobserved wonders of Yosemite Valley, I offer today TWO waterfalls whose combined heights exceed 1,000 feet. One is world-renowned and is an icon of the National Park Service. The other is in the picture above, is ignored by practically every park visitor, has been photographed by yours truly only twice, and is the only waterfall in the park to retain it's original Miwok name: Lehamite Falls. Admittedly, it lacks the drama of Yosemite Falls, but it is interesting to me because it recalls a quirk about the history of Yosemite Falls: were it not for a chance movement of the Pleistocene glacier of Yosemite Creek, the Yosemite Falls would be as obscure as Lehamite Falls. And they were for a very long time.

First, the falls themselves. They lie in the far right side of the first picture in the shadowed cleft. The second picture is a zoom. They fall over a series of steps of only a few hundred feet at a time. Like many other of the waterfalls of Yosemite Valley, they only flow for a few months out of the year. Still, they drop 1,180 feet, which anywhere else in the world would be considered significant.

The "quirk" in the history of Yosemite Falls lies in the next post, because I don't understand the quirk in Blogger that only allows the first of my posted pictures to be thumbnailed. Does anyone have advice about that? Next post in a few moments.....

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