Sunday, December 24, 2017

Happy Holidays from the Geotripper Gang.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all from the gang at Geotripper (that would be me and Mrs. Geotripper, and two cats)! As is our tradition, we offer up once again a very big Christmas tree, the General Grant Tree in Kings Canyon National Park. The tree is so large (268 feet high, 40 feet across at the base) that it took three pictures for me to capture it.

The tree was declared by Calvin Coolidge in 1926 to be the nation's Christmas Tree. At an early ceremony, park superintendent Colonel John White said ""We are gathered here around a tree that is worthy of representing the spirit of America on Christmas Day. That spirit is best expressed in the plain things of life, the love of the family circle, the simple life of the out-of-doors. The tree is a pillar that is a testimony that things of the spirit transcend those of the flesh."
I don't have a shot of the General Grant all dressed in snow, so here is another Sequoia after a surprise storm during an April trip some years ago.
Upper Yosemite Falls with a rainbow
The Sierra Nevada, as exemplified by Kings Canyon and Yosemite Valley, is the kind of place we think of when we dream of a white Christmas. We try to get up there whenever we can at this time of year.
The Cathedral Rocks
Christmas season is a time of gifts, and year by year I think more of the gifts that come from somewhere besides a store. One of the most precious gifts in my life is that I am able to live near places like these, and that I have the health and ability to visit them often. In places like Kings Canyon and Yosemite, we have a precious gift of nature. There are places near you that are gifts as well. It might be another national park, or it could be a state park. It could simply be a river, or a spot of forest surrounded by a city. My wish for you is that you can discover and explore a new place in the coming year. And if it is threatened, I wish that you will have the resources to help protect it. I have a feeling that we will need to fight for many of our precious wild places in the coming years.
El Capitan
I want to thank all of my readers, new and old, for your attention and kind comments over the last ten years that I've been blogging (that's 1,970 posts now, not that anyone is counting). I've always enjoyed hearing from you, and appreciate getting to know new friends from all over the world. I wish a wondrous season to you all!
Although this is a repeat of my traditional Christmas message, I can't help but add a bit the beauty I've experienced this evening, my first white Christmas in many, many years. The snow began here in the Seattle region in the afternoon, and now late in the evening there are a few inches on the ground. I had to relearn my snow-driving skills in a hurry. My friends in snow country might not understand the thrill, but my California friends who never see the stuff up close will understand completely. Have a wonderful holiday season!


Anonymous said...

Beautiful white Christmas. Thanks for your posts, From sunny socal.

Anonymous said...

Great, great photographs.

All the best to you, Mrs. Geotripper and the cats in 2018.

I don't get to your blog as much as I used to - well, there's a New Year's resolution - but they are always informative. Thanks.

Susan in Denver