My niece is Lora Wereb. She is my sister Sandy’s daughter. She has Stage 4 metastatic breast cancer that has gone into her lymphatic system. Being around her you would not guess that she has this going on. She is energetic, creative, inquisitive and full of life.
I recently planned a trip to see Lora. She lives in California, and I decided to extend the trip with some stops along the way, then meeting her en route to Yosemite National Park. She said yes and took charge, urging me to tent camp. She had camped and hiked there with her boyfriend Bryan many times, so I turned it all over to her.
When we met up I had been traveling for two and a half weeks – off and on camping and hotel stays at several Rocky Mountain National Parks, Arches, Bryce and Zion. We met at the Las Vegas airport and headed directly to Death Valley and then Yosemite. We had planned a nine day journey and two National Parks.
Looking back, the highlight of the trip was that after years of not being connected Lora and I bonded again like only a niece and uncle could. And what an adventure we had, starting in Death Valley and then….Yosemite. Wow.
We survived bears, coyotes and Park Rangers coming by our site nightly at 1:00 am to make sure all food and food stuffs were in the bear boxes.
Lora cooked most of our meals on a small portable propane unit but when we wanted to be pampered she showed me where we could come down from the mountains to the Ahwahnee Hotel for coffee. She was at peace with herself and Yosemite and everything that it offered.
As you can see through these images, Lora is an accomplished photographer and watching her create images was an inspiration. She knew the best spots to get early morning and evening light and places to go for sunset or after sunset images.
On the last full day of hiking and exploring we went to the Mariposa Grove where there are about 500 mature giant sequoias. We hiked about half the area when I begged off from fatigue, but not before we saw four trees named Bachelor and Three Graces. Lora positioned me to a point where we could see a fifth giant tree, which she told me she named the Creeper.
On the drive back, our last full day in Yosemite, we stopped at Glacier Point, a stunning overlook with a view of the entire Yosemite Valley.
This is where the whole trip hit home. We were standing together and she pointed out several spots where she said she wanted to be one day. After letting that sink in, I gave her a hug and we continued to be fascinated by the Yosemite Valley view before us.
As you can probably imagine, Lora is facing unbelievable medical expenses. Please go to her site 6 Months 2 years to read more about her fight or to make a donation. We would be forever grateful.