The smoke has finally cleared from the fires in Yosemite. The embers traveled for miles adding terrible pollution to our air. They are hopefully opening soon. I’ve missed being able to see the beautiful sights there. Yosemite is a place of peace and solitude for me, and everyone that visits. The tragic destruction of the forest, makes me glad I have my old photos. Over the years, I have tried many cameras to catch the beautiful scenery. A cell phone is not able to do it justice. I hope within my lifetime, the forest will regain much of its splendor.
I have been impressed with the way the Forest Service has made every attempt to make sure the public will be safe upon the reopening. They completed a thorough investigation to try and find out what started the horrific fires. The turmoil that ensued fighting the fires meant the majority of the evidence was lost. Most of the theories they have are merely speculation.
One thought, was based on facts they knew about a large family that reserved a number of campsites. The group was gathering together to conduct a remembrance service for a family member who passed away. It was right before Covid locked everything down. This was their first opportunity to assemble without the worrisome fears of Covid. Everyone was vaccinated, and had been tested. They spent all day Saturday preparing for their Sunday service. They just wanted to pay their respects to their lost family member. Each person laid a poppy on the make-shift shrine and shared a heartfelt memory. It is thought that they were forgetful and didn’t completely put out their campfire. I feel so bad for those people. If they were at fault, it is compounding their tragedy.
Yosemite is back open. There are limited opportunities to visit. Numbers of visitors are reduced. Certain places are off limits. Nature will heal its scars. It will once again be majestic.
Image from The NY Times