YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK
Travel Tips by Marilyn Miller
Yosemite is so huge and grand, you could spend a lifetime exploring it (1,000 square miles of back country). This is intended as a suggestion for a first encounter with Yosemite, so you too can fall in love when youve been introduced. Say hi for us!
First, every visitor is happier when she has packed the essentials (He is happierwhen she is happier, too!) The most important thing to remember for your comfort, from dawn to dusk ( or sun to moon) is layer, layer, layer!
WHAT TO TAKE:
Day pack or fanny pack (to hold water bottles, picnic supplies & other essentials)
Mosquito repellent & sunblock (we like the combo stuff)
Warm garment - from Angora Sweater to Fleece Top - whatever works for you!
Water Proof Jacket - large enough to go over your warm top
Comfortable Pants or Leggins - for hiking
Shorts - for short day hikes (but remember-the temperature drops far & fast)
Great Hiking Shoes!! ESSENTIAL!!!!
Another pair of comfy shoes to change into after hiking all day
Great hiking socks!
Cap & gloves (really makes a difference when temps drop)
Some 1 gallon & 2 gallon zip locks (youll especially want these for the Mist Trail - see below)
A camera with lots of film!
WHERE TO STAY -
Park accommodations (559) 252-4848 [www.yosemitepark.com]
Accomodations in Yosemite Valley:
Ahwanee Hotel - Beautiful 4 star hotel, with lovely rooms, wonderful service - luxurious.
Curry Village - Cabins with or without baths, AND Tent-cabins (bath house nearby)
Yosemite Lodge - Nice rooms with baths, in Motel type accommodation
Wawona Hotel - Lovely Victorian Hotel, rooms with & without bath, built in 1879. This hotel is about an hour's drive from the Valley.
Camping - Several options - see reservations.nps.gov or call 800/436-7275 for reservations.
-OR- cruise the internet for other accommodations in Yosemite East
(a private residence area with cabins, condos and rooms for rent, all inside the boundaries of Yosemite)
GETTING AROUND - The Park shuttle bus service is free
in Yosemite Valley and enables you to look instead of drive. There are also
Valley Tours in open seating trailers, for a first time run though and over
all orientation (check with the information centers or hotel front desk).
There are also many bike paths in the Valley, and bikes can be rented.
Now youre ready for adventure!!
MARILYN'S MUST DO LIST-
Bridal Veil Fall - In Yosemite Valley with parking at the foot of the fall. You can easily walk to the base of the fall for a spectacular view.
Vernal Fall via the Mist Trail - You can take a relatively easy hike from Happy Isles up to a bridge just below the fall, but for those more adventurous . . . .keep going up the Mist Trail to the top of Vernal Fall. You need a rain jacket & pack extra socks in ziplocks to put on at the end of your hike - you can get soaked to the bone on this trail, but its sooooo worth it!
Nevada Fall - an incredible vision!! This fall is further up the trail from Vernal Fall. Be prepared for a more serious hike and start out early! (For the REALLY ambitious, you can keep going up the trail beyond Nevada Fall to Half Dome. This is a long and streenuopuis day hike.)
Lower Yosemite Fall - parking is just in front of the fall, and its a simple stroll to the base. Those more adventurous - take a whole day to hike up to the top of Yosemite Falls.
Glacier Point - You can ride the bus round-trip for a day trip to this incredible vista that overlooks the Sierra Nevada range and Yosemite Valley. Or, our favorite: drive up for sunset. Pick-up hors douvres from the Wawona Hotel, go next door for water or wine from gas station, and head to Glacier Point. Be sure to take a flashlight so you can find your way back to your car after the sun goes down - the stars are awe-inspiring at this elevation! It will be pitch black before you know it. Often on weekends, in the summer, amateur astronomers set-up their equipment for free viewings. What an incredible experience!!
Tuolomne Meadow - About an hours drive from Yosemite Valley. The drive is spectacular, with many places to stop along the way, and ends up in a beautiful High Sierra meadow (approx. 9.000 feet high!).
Giant Sequoia Trees - There are three groves of Sequoias in the Park, with the easiest access being at Mariposa Grove near the Wawona Hotel.
For Ten Tips for Yosemite Visitors (Spring & Fall versions) and other good information on the Park, visit The Yosemite Funds Web site.
WHERE TO EAT
The Mountain Room (The Lodge) A great dinner, anytime & more than once in a trip.(OUR FAV)
Cafeteria (The Lodge) - open all day, especially good for breakfast.
Four Seasons Restaurant (The Lodge) - Family breakfast & dinner.
Ahwahnee Hotel Main Dining Room - Sunday Brunch is huge, or have a great hamburger after a big hike! This is also slightly more dressy (although, jackets not required)
Indian Room Lounge (The Ahwahnee Hotel) - great late afternoon/evening grill.
Wawona Hotel Restaurant - Sunday Brunch & a slightly more dressy dinner (jackets not required)
Wawona Golf Shop - Sandwiches & Snacks (and, yes there is a nine hole golf course at Wawona!)
Degnans Store (Yosemite Village) - sandwiches, salads, chips, crackers, etc. - all you need for a picnic for a big hike.
Degnans Fast Food (Yosemite Village) - pizza, hamburgers, ice cream, etc.
Degnans Pasta Place - (Yosemite Village) pasta & salads.
The Dining Pavilion (Curry Village) -cafeteria service for breakfast & dinner
Meadow Deck Hamburger Stand (Curry Village) - hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza, sodas, shakes, etc. on an outside deck.
Of course you can always grab sandwich stuff & snacks to put together yourself, but, DO NOT LEAVE ANYTHING IN YOUR CAR. Bears will break into a car even for a candy wrapper/gum wrapper.
For More Information:
General Park Information (recording) (209) 372-0200 www.nps.gov/yose/
Yosemite Trip Planning at NPS web site... great information!
Hotel Reservations (559) 252-4848 www.yosemitepark.com
Campground Reservations (800) 436-7275 http://reservations.nps.gov
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