Black Oak Tree Limbs Converge, Yosemite National Park

Black Oak Tree Limbs Converge, Yosemite National Park

Black Oak Tree Limbs Converge, Yosemite National Park.  Convergence is the act or process of converging; it is defined as the tendency to meet in one point. It is in the El Capitan Meadow that the Black Oak tree limbs converge up towards the sky. In the fall their changing leaves can glow beautifully when lit from behind. Their color often contrast nicely with the darker shapes of their trunks and branches. Depending on the angle from which you are looking up, the branches form a Cathedral. Given how the light affects the color of these leaves, it is important to be aware of the direction it comes from at various times of the day and how the light is affected by the surrounding cliffs and ridges. El Capitan Meadow is an excellent example. This area can be in shadow during the earl and late hours but then be illuminated by midmorning and afternoon sun. However, due to the proximity of Sentinel Rocks, parts of the meadow may temporarily fall into shadow in the middle of the day. What makes Yosemite Valley so wonderful, so extraordinary? It is the juxtaposition of soaring cliffs with the serenity of the meadows. It is also the meandering river on the valley floor. There are other places with magnificent cliffs. There is no other place with an idyllic valley surrounded by such high walls. The quintessential Yosemite experience is to wander out into a meadow. Then stare up at the cliffs, waterfalls and trees and soak up the tranquility.

El Capitan Bridge and Meadow are at the west side of Yosemite Valley, at the junction of Northside Drive (the road leaving the valley) and the short crossover road that connects Northside with Southside Drive (the eastbound road entering Yosemite Valley). That means you can get here as you enter the park by making the first left off of Southside Drive after passing the Highway 41 (Wawona/Fresno, Tunnel View) turn, or as you exit the park, by driving about two and a half miles beyond Yosemite Lodge on Northside Drive. You’ll find parking on both sides of the bridge, and even more along the meadow to the west.

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