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Old 12-07-2016, 05:40 AM   #1
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Yosemite

Planning on a trip to Yosemite May 2017. Does anybody have any info ; best campground, sites, unknown places to see etc.? Thanks in advance.
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Old 12-07-2016, 06:04 AM   #2
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Google - Yosemite air forums. Yosemite is best around Easter, when the snow is melting. Water falls are everywhere. You will not be disappointed.
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Old 12-07-2016, 07:07 AM   #3
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Since one of your requests was for "best campground," you may not have a reservation yet. May is high season for Yosemite, and campsites in the Valley may already be booked. If anything is still available, grab it! Otherwise, don't give up. There are probably campsites available in the surrounding communities. Plan on driving into Yosemite Valley early in the morning, parking your car somewhere near a shuttle stop, and riding the free shuttle all day to the various attractions. Many things can be seen from the valley floor, but if you can only take one hike, take the mist trail to Vernal and Nevada falls. The other part of Yosemite that is readily accessible is Tuolumne, the high country. In Yosemite Valley, you have sheer granite walls and waterfalls. In Tuolumne, you have granite domes. Both are spectacular, but Tuolumne is best later on when it gets too hot to be comfortable and the falls start to dry up in the Valley. Tuolumne is accessible from either side of the Sierras, but the most spectacular approach is from the east through Tioga Pass. Camping is available in nearby communities along highway 395. The Valley is only accessible from the west. Camping is available in communities to the north and south of Yosemite. 90% of Yosemite is in the back country, a paradise for backpackers but not easily accessible by roads. Remember that when you are in awe of the 10% you can drive to, and promise yourself to come back some day when you have more time.
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Old 12-07-2016, 08:03 AM   #4
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Yosemite campsites in the valley are at a premium. They are assigned by lottery in advance 6 months to the day at 7am on the dot. By 7:15 they are all booked. There are even Yosemite campsite scalpers. Some people set up teams of people to go on line at exactly 7am to blanket the internet hoping to get lucky and get a campsite. The campsites in the valley are small crowded and noisy but you get Bridal Veil Falls, El Capitan and Half Dome as your backdrop.

There are other first come first serve campgrounds in the park.

An alternative is to stay at a private campground outside the park such as Yosemite Pines and Yosemite Lakes.
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Old 12-11-2016, 12:57 PM   #5
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We are going to be in yosemite with our Airstream next week! it's a great place.

In May, by far your best option is camping in Yosemite Valley - Tuolumne Meadows will not be open yet, it will still be snowed in. As prior posters have suggested, you will want to try to get a reservation for one of the three "Pines" campgrounds in the valley that have spots for trailers.

For May 2017, since it is just more than six months away, you will want to log onto the yosemite reservations website next Thursday December 15 just before 7am California time - be super prepared on exactly what campground and site you want, and go for it...

Suggest you practice in advance - if you are even 30 seconds late you can miss the window to get a reservation.
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Old 12-11-2016, 01:35 PM   #6
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There is a really nice area just south of Yosemite called June Lake. The loop itself is worth the drive, but the available camping there is worth considering. It's beautiful, uncrowded and peaceful. You won't have to reserve a spot in advance and you'll be able to chose from dozens of spots all around the lake.

http://junelakeloop.com/

Yosemite is hustle bustle- don't get me wrong, it's a must see/ do experience but it is crowded and everything inside the park is pricey. If we ever make it back out that way we will camp in one of the NFS sites on the June Lake loop and commute in to the park for the day.

Enjoy your trip!
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Old 12-11-2016, 02:43 PM   #7
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All you need to know. https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/camping.htm

Reservation are 5 months in advance, starting on the 15th.
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Old 12-11-2016, 04:29 PM   #8
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We were there a couple of years ago early April and stayed at a KOA just west of the park. We commuted back and forth for five days. Took our bicycles in, the valley is flat. Not real crowded that time of year and waterfalls were flowing from the snowmelt above. A "must see" place that is very special.
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Old 12-11-2016, 10:20 PM   #9
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In May I would use Highway 140 as it is the lowest elevation and there are campgrounds outside the park at Indian Flats (the closest) and Midpines (KOA) just beyond Mariposa. Mariposa fairgrounds also has camping. Highway 140 is called the all year highway for a reason, plus it puts you closer to the valley than 41 or 120.
Everything you read above is true. You gotta know your stuff to get a camp site that you can get your trailer into..
What to do there? Take a Ranger led walk. You will see stuff others walk right by. Hike the Mist trail but take a poncho or a large garbage bag to make one. If you can't do all the Mist Trail at least go as far as the bridge, Have a drink in the Ahwahnee lounge or out on the patio. Pizza and Ice Cream at Camp Curry. Just don't let the raccoons steal yours. Take a spotting scope if you have one and watch climbers on El Capitan. Visit Ansel Adams studio and tell my cousin Carol I sent you.
Almost forgot: There is daily bus service to and from Yosemite. Search on YARTS. for details. You can take your bikes on the bus and there are free shuttle buses in Yosemite
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Old 12-12-2016, 12:04 AM   #10
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We camped at Crane Flat about 25 minutes away from Yosemite Valley, I recommend it as the valley is crowded and the sites are small. Additionally there are only 3 spots in the valley that can take a 35ft TV+trailer length combined.

Food and anything you buy in the valley is expensive, best to bring everything you need.

I wrote some code to check for cancellations and had good luck getting reservations that way, this site does the same thing.

http://reserve.wanderinglabs.com
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Old 12-13-2016, 05:21 PM   #11
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Planning on a trip to Yosemite AREA this summer. We looking for an RV park with hookups for 2 to 3 weeks. The idea is having our creature comfort cake and eating it too as we use the campsite as a base camp for exploring the park. Swimming pool and cabins are a big plus for family guests. Just to be clear our preference is an RV Park outside the park with amenities compared to a campsite in the park with no amenities. Do you know of any RV parks you would recommend based on experience?
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Old 12-28-2016, 09:23 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StreamGlider View Post
There is a really nice area just south of Yosemite called June Lake. The loop itself is worth the drive, but the available camping there is worth considering. It's beautiful, uncrowded and peaceful. You won't have to reserve a spot in advance and you'll be able to chose from dozens of spots all around the lake.

http://junelakeloop.com/

Yosemite is hustle bustle- don't get me wrong, it's a must see/ do experience but it is crowded and everything inside the park is pricey. If we ever make it back out that way we will camp in one of the NFS sites on the June Lake loop and commute in to the park for the day.

Enjoy your trip!
How far is June Lake (approximate mileage and summer driving time) from Yosemite Valley and the more well known destinations like Bridal Veil Falls, El Capitan and Half Dome?

I am sure there is lot to do in the western part of the park, but to visit Yosemite Valley itself I wonder if I would be better off near the western entrance. I have pretty much decided to camp outside the park and commute in for all the previously mentioned reasons. I am planning a 3 week trip so one possibility would be a week or so on the east side and a week or so on the west side.
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Old 12-28-2016, 10:31 AM   #13
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June Lake to Yosemite Valley is a minimum of 2 1/2 hrs one way, because of the low speed limits in the park and twisty roads, more if there is a lot of traffic, which there often is in the summer. June Lake is very convenient to Tuolumne Meadows, which is actually more pleasant in the summer. Instead of Half Dome, El Capitan, and Bridle Veil falls, you would be seeing Cathedral Peak, Fairview (and other) domes, and hiking to Waterwheel Falls.
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Old 12-29-2016, 04:55 PM   #14
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ID:	277395 June lake in June 2016 was a welcome relaxed camping area withe easy reservation. Small town with coffee shop, good pizza , a gorgeous small lake with supplies and gas. It would be 2-3 hours over a almost 10,000 foot pass to Yosemite valley. All with amazing views and summer traffic to slow your trip. If you go to June lake area , slow down and enjoy what it has to offer, you won't regret it.


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Old 01-01-2017, 09:02 AM   #15
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Thanks to those that answered the distance questions. The 2 times I've been to Yosemite as an adult was on a motorcycle and I merely rode through June Lake Loop en route to the park. But it left a lasting impression on me. I want to go back there with the AS someday, motorcycle in the bed of the truck until we get there.
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