Recently I went on a quick two-day trip to Yosemite National Park. I had not been inside the park before even though I have passed by the area many times on the way to Northern California. We got up early in the morning and drove from San Diego to Yosemite to hit the Mist Trail before the crowds started since this is one of the most popular hikes at Yosemite. Vernal Fall is approximately a three-mile round trip hike but you can go further on Mist Trail to Nevada Fall which is a seven-mile round trip. The recent wildfires in the area were still active at the time and the smoke was causing some trouble breathing so we decided to just go as far as Vernal Fall. This is an absolutely beautiful hike with streams and mini waterfalls along the way and a giant stone staircase by the fall. Hiking in October provides you with an extra bonus of the leaves changing colors. The lush trees were covered in various shades of green, red, orange, and yellow. I took my Nikon SLR with me since I am currently taking a photography class with the attempt to “get off auto” and there was no shortage of beautiful subjects to practice taking pictures of. The moderately challenging trail is fairly steep in some parts but the hike is overall enjoyable and not that difficult. Depending on the season and rainfall, you will discover that the Mist Trail is appropriately named because the mountain water sprays on you while hiking. During the spring when the snowpack melts it is recommended to wear rain gear as you can get soaked. When I have more time available, my goal is to return to Yosemite and hike Half Dome.