Yosemite (pronounced yosematee) National Park, USA, is a very special place. Located in NE California, in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, this breath-taking valley and surrounding granite mountains are a natural wonder to behold.VACATIONS 431Unfortunately for Native Americans who called this area home, they were driven out by Euro-American settlers, starting in the mid 1800s. By 1864 it had gained enough notoriety that President Lincoln granted this area to the state of California. Thanks to the efforts of John Muir, a naturalist, among others, this valley was designated a national park in 1890. Thus, the grandeur of the valley and surrounding mountains were preserved for future generations to explore and enjoy. I sincerely hope the original inhabitants can somehow maintain a connection to such a magical place. Ansel Adams, the great photographer whose black & white images of Yosemite continue to enthrall people from all walks of life, did much to bring this treasure to the forefront of American consciousness. Yosemite continues to draw people from all over the globe.VACATIONS 432 VACATIONS 451