American Road Trip - part #1 — Sequoia National Park and Yosemite

Two weeks.

7 national parks over 4 states.

2200 miles driven.

Hopefully a lot of nice photos to show for it! I took with me my Lumix GH5, and my Lumix S1, with a handful of lenses. Because clearly I don’t value my own back, or take heed to luggage allowances. I totally over-packed. But hey! I am a Nerd.

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Sequoia National Park

Switchbacks, big-ass trees, stunning views

So… First on the list. Sequoia National Park. This park is as much a joy to drive to as it is to explore. You have to climb some serious height to get there, with hundreds of switchbacks, and dozens of places to stop and take in the view. It’s all part of the adventure.

Then we have the main event. If the name didn’t give it away: the sequoia trees. They’re just too big to fit into your brain until you see them. You drive through them — so close you can wind your window down and touch them in parts — then you can do plenty of trails to get up close and personal with nature. And yes I did hug more than one tree. Because you just have to, don’t you?

General Sherman is the biggest living tree in the world, and he’s right here folks. I must admit, it was a bit lame to realise he’s the biggest in terms of like — girth? — for lack of a better description. Like, he’s a chonky boi, as well as high, but not the tallest in the world. Just the most mass. Still pretty cool. Still well worth the short walk to visit for sure. The walk to him is impeded somewhat with there being huge bloody concrete paths everywhere. It sort of ruins the tranquility. But this is America after all.

P.S. these photos are edited with my brand new preset pack, The EVERYTHING Preset. It works with video too. Check it out here!

Next: Yosemite National Park

I’ve always wanted to go here! And we spent a lovely two days here. It was just as stunning as I thought it would be. Now. The drive in is actually hazardous. There is 8000ft of elevation that happens pretty quickly and I am not joking when I say I got altitude sickness. When we stopped at Tunnel View, I was that oxygen deprived and confused I literally forgot how to use my camera. ME! I just stared blankly at it with numb fingers for about a minute before it all came back to me. It was not pleasant. I’m not sure if we’re just super susceptible to it, whether it was a bit much after a similar trip up and down to Sequoia the day before, or if everyone suffers it and just doesn’t say? If you have experienced it do let me know! Anyway. The photos.

I was rocking my GH5 today with my trusty Olympus 9-18mm wide-angle lens.

We did a lovely meadow walk, but mostly just enjoyed driving through the park, and walking on random paths and seeing where we ended up. One time we ended up near this beautiful stream. The water was so green. I can’t believe this place is just a random thing by the road and not an attraction. But that just goes to show just how beautiful Yosemite is.

I had a paddle to get some of these shots. It was so refreshing and absolutely worth getting sand in my toes for.

More lovely photos to come! I’d highly recommend an ultra-wide lens if you’re going to these places. Everything is just so grand it’s so hard to get perspective and fit everything in!

You can see all my destinations and more photos / timelapses in my video diary here:

P.S. these photos are edited with my brand new preset pack, The EVERYTHING Preset. It works with video too. Check it out here!