After everything that was Las Vegas we hit the road for the longest drive of our trip to Bass Lake, within the Yosemite National Park. I cant really tell you much about the drive. We all slept most of it, and by the time we awoke nearing Yosemite it was too dark to see anything. Accomodation at Bass Lake Lodge was different to our previous setups. Here we stayed in self contained cabins that slept 4. Within minutes of getting to my room I learnt that we were the unlucky ones chosen to host tonights Pizza party. So we were soon swamped by caters with food and drinks to feed 40+ that took over our entire kitchen. Of course wherever there is food flocks the hoard of hungry seagulls. So it was quite cozy 40+ people in our litte living room. But it was a good relaxed change. Following the Pizza Party some of us headed down to the bar, for a subdued 1 or 2 drinks following Vegas, but more to shoot some pool and have a chat.
The next morning what we thought was going to be a free day to explore the park turned into 8am on the bus to drive 1.5hrs into the heart of the Yosemite National Park. Arriving in the heart of the park, we were glad we made the effort. WOW! The main valley is shaped in a 'U' shape with a flat floor that has a small river flowing through it. Then each side is the biggest most imposing sheer cliff faces you can imagine. 100's of metres in areas, and just straight up and down. There was a lot to do at the park. There was many people who had been camping, there was heaps of trail walks and cliff climbs to be done. There was also an option to hire bikes and ride around the park. Quite oddly there was also a man made ice rink setup within the park. My group had a good explore on foot and also had a go at the ice skating. All in all a beautiful place and lots of great photos. But most unfortunately it was freezing cold and we were all dog tired so we didn't really get to appreciate the park. Definitely a place to return to on my To Do list and spend a good few days doing some climbs and really exploring the beauty of Yosemite.
Returning to our Bass Lake accommodation we were all pretty excited to celebrate one of Americas most popular holidays 'Thanks Giving'. Naturally we didn't know to much about it, and were eager to get involved in the culture and learn. We all made an extra effort to dress up. Upon entering the conference room we were completely wowed by the amazing presentation and sheer quantity of food set out before us. Sitting down at our tables admiring the amazing food from afar we eagerly waited a speech a ceremony… we didn't know what we were in for. Then out of no where the direction was simply grab a plate and go get your food. I was totally bummed by this, I really wanted to learn about the Thanks Giving tradition and be apart of their special day. Instead it just turned into a massive feast with no significance.
Following this we headed to the Pub to Dance, Karaoke and drink our last night on Contiki away.