Campgrounds in Yosemite National Park
abound for wilderness lovers and family vacationers
of every disposition. Whether you are traveling to
the park for the first time to tour places like the
Mercer Caverns, Pine Mountain Lake, or Tuolumne Meadows,
or you're looking to lose yourself among the majesty
of the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias, you can find
campgrounds near Yosemite that offer budget accommodations
and high value.
Often, camp sites will provide group
discounts of 15% off or more. Belonging to Club OutWest
can also get you discounts off high quality campground
Yosemite National Park lodging. And of course, members
of Good Sam, AAA, and military personnel may also qualify
for discounts on stays at campgrounds at Yosemite.
It's a common misconception that just
because you book a Yosemite National Park campground
vacation, you must live in the wilderness and endure
rustic privations. In truth, there are many tiers of
lodging options available in most Yosemite Park campgrounds.
Some RV sites come complete with wi-fi access (usually
pay for play), and they provide showers and a communal
indoor area. You can also reserve yurts, which are
essentially cozy little huts that include futons, refrigerators,
kitchen appliances, and other amenities.
A variety of cabin packages are also
available at many Yosemite campgrounds and lodging
points. Basic cabins can provide beds, small appliances,
and even television. The more premium and luxury cabins,
on the other hand, can sleep more people, provide an
array of heating and cooling options, and serve as
essentially rental homes in the woods.
On the other end of the spectrum,
you can find campground in Yosemite packages that put
you truly into the heart of the wilderness. These oases
allow you to just bring your gear, pitch your tent,
and enjoy the natural serenity and fresh air of the
park. Bear in mind that if you decide to pitch tent
in campgrounds near Yosemite, you must abide by ranger
rules. Many protected species make their homes in the
park, and strict rules for campfires and garbage disposal
Also remember that the park is enormous
- 750,000 acres all told. There are five main entrances,
two rivers, thousands of miles of creeks and streams,
and hundreds of miles of roads and hiking trails. It's
easy to get lost, so be sure to let friends and family
members know where you are camping and to obey all
ranger ordinances that pertain to IDing your campground
in Yosemite location.
Typically, rates for Yosemite National
Park campground rentals vary depending on the season.
The character of the park shifts radically from season
to season as well. During the spring months, snow and
ice meltwater leads to the formation of gushing waterfalls
all throughout the park. Be aware that certain roads
leading up to even main campgrounds around Yosemite
may be rendered inaccessible by weather events.
During summer season, the park becomes
slightly more populated - although given that the area
is so vast, one can never say that it gets "crowded."
Great points to visit during the summer include the
Half Dome, the Bridalveil Fall, Yosemite Valley, and
the serpentine Tuolumne River. Go hiking past spectacular
granite cliff faces, explore frontier towns, pan for
gold in still-operating gold mines, bike over undulating
hills, and just fill your lungs with some of the freshest
mountain air in North America.
Campgrounds in Yosemite stay open
during the fall, even though autumn traffic tapers
off. Don't expect a burst of color during autumn up
here - most of the trees in Yosemite are evergreens,
so you don't see leaf turnings like you do in some
of the deciduous forests of the east coast. That said,
opportunities galore for vacationing, hiking, swimming,
wildlife spotting, and trail hiking are open to you.
Moreover, campgrounds near Yosemite typically lower
their rates during the autumn months.
During the winter months - technically
defined as end of November through the end of February
- the park becomes an oasis of solitude and quietude.
Snowfalls on the evergreens create some of the most
picturesque scenery you can ever imagine - everywhere
you go looks like a postcard snapshot. Visit the park
for skiing, sledding, and other winter action. But
do be mindful that most of the park is a protected
federal wilderness area: there are limits on the kinds
of sports you can carry out here. It's important to
understand the park regulations to avoid disturbing
habitats or other visitors; if you violate these rules,
you can be fined or have your park privileges revoked.
To venture into the designated wilderness
areas, you need camping permits all year round for
overnight trips. The National Park Service and Yosemite
National Park websites provide information about how
to obtain such permits.
You should also check out local weather
conditions before you plan day-to-day activities. Your
campground in Yosemite guides can provide insight about
where to find the best seasonal activities, where to
find petting farms (home to animals like the curious,
kid-friendly alpacas), where to access supplies and
food, and where to do laundry and obtain internet access
and good cell service.
When planning out a Yosemite campground
vacation, it may behoove you to pack for a number of
weather contingencies. Bring rain and winter gear,
even if you're headed to the park during a relatively
warm and sunny time of the year. Also, call ahead to
find out whether the roads leading to and from your
campground will be accessible.