Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, Yosemite discussed on RV Homeschool Podcast
In terms of camping I I wanted to talk about the NPS camping. That's actually within the park. This is by far the best option. If you just WANNA be right there in the action action and see everything because unfortunately all of the places that you can camp at that are outside of the park are really outside of the park. So we're talking about it least a half hour drive to the entrance for Yosemite National Park not to mention the further. Drive that you have to actually get into the valley so it's easily an hour are up to two hours for you to get from your RV place into Yosemite Valley from wherever you're staying if you're staying outside of the park and that's a huge inconvenience When you're talking about maybe having limited days or just being able to try to see as much of the park as you can and then having trouble level so far to get back to your RV but of course being in the park is not always an option for everybody so we were We did this trip with about about four days notice so we were originally supposed to head down to Joshua Tree but there was a big blizzard in Colorado in October and it it closed I I said to the West and it closed. I twenty five heading to the south so we didn't really have a way ahead to the southern part of the USO instead we headed north to Wyoming and then headed over or to Yosemite so great assembly glad. We did it but we didn't have any prior planning for this trip so there were no reservations for US available to get into the park park and they always have some first. Come first serve but when you're in a big RV and when you're traveling to Twenty hours to get to a park. You you don't necessarily want to Rely on the first come first serve so we don't like to do that either. We like to try to book something but in terms of actually stain in the park you you do have a few different options if you are a larger. RV They actually have a few places that are open in the summer that can accommodate up to a forty foot RV RV. But I think it's literally six or eight sites for the whole park that can accommodate up to forty feet now they have a few more places aces that say they can accommodate up to thirty five feet. And I'll tell you. A lot of the national parks have a limit on thirty five feet being the Max and technically are Jayco Senecas. Thirty seven feet but miraculously shrink down to thirty five feet whenever we're going to a national park because we have just found culture bay in Grand Tetons. We've just found that we're able to fit into that So we usually just say yeah okay. We're thirty five feet and we take one of those. We're able to take one of those spots now. The issue with Yosemite Valley is because of the way that the sites are laid out. You literally don't have a turning radius to back in to the actual campsite so they're all back in spots and because because of the limitations with the trees and everything you don't have a turning radius to get into the spot so I don't know if our whole idea that will be fine at a thirty five foot site really will work at this park. They actually go so far to say that. If you're pulling a trailer the trailer cannot be more than is it twenty four or twenty five feet. Wait so you're even more limited with a trailer just because of that Not being able to do the proper backing up and having the turn radius to make it into the spots so I think the motorhome limit on these larger spots are thirty five feet but only twenty four feet. If it's a travel trailer that you have with you so a a lot of limitations with size. So that's a bit of a problem also. Getting reservations for the campgrounds are insane. This is one of the busiest parks and it's usually the kind of place that is booked a longtime in advance specifically in advance. They will tell you on the NPS website that it's five months in advance but don't put that in your head. Think four months in advance. And I'll tell you why so. This is the way that it works. Let's say that you want to go for the fourth of July weekend. Okay so the way it works. Is the reservations will open for four to five months before that date specifically four months before that date but it will open up for a month's worth of reservations for a month time so for example. If you want to derive arrived between June fifteenth and July Life Fourteenth. Your reservation day would be February fifteenth. So that's February. Fifteenth is four months before June fifteenth. That's that's why I'm saying. Put it in your head that it's four months before the date that it opens up. It's just at that point when it opens up at that four months ahead of time. It's opening for an entire hire month so it's opening from June fifteenth dates all the way up to July fourteen dates so if you wanted to go on the fourth of July that's during that time stretch. That's right of June fifteenth to July fourteenth. So you need to book on on February Fifteenth. Don't put it in your head. Oh I can do this five. You know five months in advance or I need to do this. March first. Or second or whatever to correlate with the first part of July it's it's the four months before the earliest date that it opens opens and a link. They have on their website the specific so if you have this arrival date this is the date that you need to make reservations and the reservations opened up at seven. AM MM Pacific Time and this is one of those things you just set your clock and you make sure that you're trying to get those reservation dates as soon as you want them as soon as you can get them. So I'll put a link to that in the show notes so you can get to that and specifically see what are my dates. And what do I need to get in terms of the bigger. RV campsites that are available. So upper pines hindes has stuff. That's up to thirty five feet. The Lower Pines has the forty foot sites. But that's not open in offseason so when we were there it wasn't open and so the upper pints would have been the only option and then won't which is the town that's kind of on the south part they can accommodate up to thirty five feet and and Bridal Veil Creek camp that is an open year round that's just Kind of a summertime. One and then Haagen meadow which I guess is in the northern part. We must have passed by that. But I'm not quite sure where that was at so there's a few different places and of course there's a lot more options if you have a smaller RV or if you're just tent camping. I mean you have a ton of options and you might actually be able to get a first-come-first-serve if you get there early enough in the morning but for the big rigs not that many options. You definitely want to make sure that. Do you have that reservation ahead of time and I think the only option you have for actually getting into the park is highway. One forty so. Don't forget that part okay in terms of private spots. Where can you park so private campgrounds? That are outside of the park From the South side. There's a town called. Oh Kirsten it looks like. It's about an hour more from that south entrance at the Mariposa Grove. That might be an option. It looked like they had a number of while a number meaning. You know three or four different. RV Parks so there might be some different for an options there on that south side in terms of highway. One forty so the El Portal road. There's a Indian flat. RV Park work that shows. It's probably only about twenty minutes from outside of the park so that might be a good option. As one of the closest places you can go to And then the ED next option is highway one twenty. which was that big oak flat road? This is where we went to and this is near the town of Grove Lynn. So most of these. RV sites are are going to have an address in Groveland the closest one to the Yosemite entrance is about twenty five thirty minutes from the entrance. And that's Yosemite Seventy Lakes RV resort. We didn't stay here a it didn't from the campground reviews that I was reading from all stays APP. It didn't look like it was highly rated as Yosemite Ridge which was the next furthest out. So that's where we ended up staying there really aren't any of the. RV parks that have overwhelming glowing. Reviews News so It seems that they all have some things. That people find as issues in Maybe a little bit older and don't necessarily have a ton of amenities so there's not really anyone who's a very clear winner. This place is actually prime for an amazing. Koa are big amazing. RV Re Park something like the on the West Glacier Koa if something like that came in to the west side of Yosemite they would make killing because it is so needed Really really phenomenal. RV Park but Since they don't have it when you're trying to look at your best option the like I said the Yosemite Lakes RV resort is your closest closest. We didn't stay there. We just Kinda thought at the distance. I think that the gone with the winds have a video where they stayed here and so they have a review. So you can see that We ended up staying at Yosemite Ridge resort. which is about forty minutes from the entrance? Free Assembly National Park and You know we liked it. There was It was a little tight to get into. So there's some cabins and then there's only a number of spots I don't remember how many exactly but not that many maybe eleven sure so so so not a ton of spots but we were definitely in the largest of the spots. It was kind of a big pool through area and we had a nice Sitting area area and a big grassy area that was really pretty little tight to get in and out for our thirty seven foot. RV Especially we couldn't even deal with the towing we had Wait until we were in the front of the office in order to hook up our jeep because we couldn't get into the spot or out of it with the G. picked up so little bit tight and then and the other thing that was a huge. Bummer is We booked intentionally at a private campground outside so we could hook up to electrical because we had our dog I with us and when we travel with the dog we don't like to leave her in the RV when it could be too hot or too cold and not have any power to accommodate air conditioning. Or anything anything else. So we don't need the power for the heat but we did We would need some electrical power to run the ACC so we like to stay at a campsite so that it's more comfortable for her as we're doing our daytime travels and so that's part of the reason that we paid to stay at this site and didn't even consider doing a I come for surf. Type deal it within the park and unfortunately fortunately when we got there they didn't have any power now it wasn't their fault California's a Lotta wildfire issues. PG will which is their power company for their utilities. He's will just shut off power if there's too much wind or any sort of risk where there could be a downed power line and cause more fires so they literally cut the power off to all the people pull that are in this area for two days. So the whole Two nights that we stayed there there was never any power So that was a bummer But the resort was nice enough to refund me some money even though it wasn't even their fault but we were paying for this hookup site that we had absolutely no hookups for because even the water pump required water so we had. We had nothing to had no water or electrical or anything now. Fortunately it was plenty Cool so it wasn't an issue to try to keep the air conditioning conditioning. On in fact we ended up running the heat for dog while we were gone. And then the next On Grove land would be Yosemite Pines This is a little bit it closer to the town of Groveland. So you're kind of narrow town if you wanna do town type stuff as well on your trip but it's also about fifty to sixty minutes to get into the park so further drive into the part so none of the options are super close. This is Some big rugged mountainous area and there are some kind of national national forest areas. Where maybe you can just pull over? And if you're going to boondock anyway you can just pull over in stay at one of those sites. You can't do any sort of Boondock and within the park of course But there are some national forest area. That's outside of the park. So that might be an option to if you just want kind of some free boone docking so that's it for camping Just a few kind of last minute notes. One thing is a book recommendation so I always try to prep the kids for our trip ahead of time by checking out..