Favorite thing: The mountains and tremendous rock formations provide the underlying beauty of Yosemite. But it is the trees that make this park a living ecosystem. Without the trees there is no food and shelter for the various animals that call the Sierra home. Without the trees there would be no comforting shade and glorious pine smell for the hiker. There is no shame in hugging a tree--they are one of our most important natural resources.
The closest town to the Arch Rock entrance is El Portal. The huge Yosemite View Lodge is located here literally right on the boundry of the park. About 50 miles west lies the mining town of Mariposa. Several hotels, restaurants, and service stations are available here. Further down the highway is the much larger Merced and close by, Modesto. From the south entrance on Highway 41, Fish Camp lies about 2 miles away. The very nice but ultra-expensive Tenaya Lodge is located here. 15 miles further brings you to Oakhurst, a tourist town nestled in a valley in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. Many hotels and restaurants are available in this town. It also provides access to scenic Bass Lake. About 45 more miles south lies Fresno, the biggest city near Yosemite. From Fresno it's about 2 hours to both Yosemite and Kings Canyon/Sequoia National Parks. Lee Vining lies east of the park and is only accessible in the summer when Tioga Pass is open. A small number of hotels and service stations are available here on U.S. 395, but be warned that gas prices on this side of the Seirras is much more expensive than on the west side. Lee Vining provides access to Yosemite's high country and Toulumne Meadows, but it's a long way to Yosemite Valley from here. The town also provides easy access to Mono Lake, Mammoth Lakes, and Bodie Ghost Town.
Two gas stations are provided inside Yosemite. One at Crane Flats and another at Wawona. Heed the warnings that there is no gas available in Yosemite Valley. Should you run out of gas in the valley, Valley maintenance will kindly refill your tank with an emergency supply, however, they'll charge you twice what you would pay at the other two gas stations in the park, and those two stations are already much more than stations you'll find outside the park. Both stations offer 24 hour pay at the pump service by credit card only. All other transactions are restricted to the station's business hours.
Favorite thing: Yosemite has a post office located just west of the Yosemite Village, just east of Ansel Adams Gallery.
Favorite thing: And what best having a walk in the silent paths, and feeling watched, followed, criss-crossed by the cutest little things I`ve evers seen?
Favorite thing: Continuing on the road towards the valley, just past Wawona there is a turnoff for Glacier Point. The road climbs 3,000 feet and leads to an overlook with a great view of the valley and Half Dome.
Favorite thing: After a day's worth of activities, the Ahwahnee's Great Lounge is wonderful place to read a good book, sip a glass of wine, chat with family or friends or play cards.
Favorite thing: These deers were just going about there business wondering around the valley floor - luckily for me I was just wondering past as well - don't get too close though, it's more there valley than ours!
Fondest memory: They are from left to right: me, Lynn, Napoleon and Toni. Great bunch of people and we had a wonderful time.
I have often visited the Awahnee Hotel Dining room. The food is always excellent and is on par in...more
Just to clarify, at least several reviews have included erroneous information about who "runs" the...more
Yosemite Lodge is probably where most package tourists staying in the valley will stay. Rooms are...more