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Yosemite the one day visit

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Mar 22nd, 2013, 08:40 AM
  #1
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Yosemite the one day visit

Planning on driving from Napa to Yosemite the second week of May. Have only one day to spend there...( figure two nights) Get there sleep, tour sleep. Will then be driving to LAX for flight home.

1. Best place (s) to stay near or in Yosemite Park?

2. Will be driving down from Napa on route 49. As this will be our one and only what towns or sights should we NOT miss enroute to Napa?
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Mar 22nd, 2013, 08:41 AM
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I mean TO YOSEMITE... thanks
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Mar 22nd, 2013, 09:09 AM
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Nothing you could possibly see enroute to Yosemite will compare with Yosemite so since you have only a single day to spend there I suggest you hot foot it directly to the park.
You should try to stay in Yosemite. It’s late but there is chance you could find lodging available only use www.yosemitepark.com for in park lodging.

Outside the park, you can stay in nearby El Portal. http://www.yosemiteresorts.us/

There is a $20 entrance fee but it’s good for 7 consecutive days. Keep your receipt on the first day to use it on the second.

Don’t know if you like hikes but for sure see Yosemite Falls which you can walk up to. Go to Happy Isles where the trail head to Vernal Falls is (Mist Trail is above the viewing bridge but you don’t have to go all the way to the top if you are not up to it. On the way up to your right and off in the distance is Illilouette Falls and if you turn around you can see Yosemite Falls. You will also be able to see the Merced River up close. In May, it will be very swift and amazing.
Walk around Mirror Lake.

On your getaway day drive toward the south entrance and see Wawona and the Mariposa Grove before exiting via 41 to 99 and then south to LA.
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Mar 22nd, 2013, 09:10 AM
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I stayed at Yosemite View Lodge in El Portal- close to the Park Entrance - has a restaurant and a pool- right on the river.

If you have only 1 day, you should book one of the tram tours of the valley floor- takes you to around to most of the easily accessible attractions. I believe these tours sell out so you may want to see if you can book online or at least as soon as you can.
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Mar 22nd, 2013, 09:38 AM
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The Gold Rush era towns on 49 are interesting, but given your lack of time I'd bypass them. If you want to stop, try the Columbia State Historic Park just north of Sonora.
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Mar 22nd, 2013, 09:58 AM
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On your way out the south entrance of Yosemite, drive east to see Mariposa Grove. If you can only get one night reservation in the park you should spend the second night in Oakhurst for an easier trip to LAX through Fresno.
When leaving the Valley, make the stop just before the tunnel to see the Valley from high up.
Get to Yosemite as early in the day as you can without a lot of sight seeing coming from Napa.
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Mar 22nd, 2013, 01:37 PM
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I notice there is also a free shuttle that goes around the valley. Is the tram tour worth the cost? Do you get off and hike and get back on?
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Mar 22nd, 2013, 03:36 PM
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There is a free shuttle that goes around the valley floor but the tram is really a tour with a driver who gives you some history and interesting info - while the shuttle is just a shuttle.

You can also take a bus into the park from Yosemite View lodge and not have to fuss with finding a parking spot- I believe its called YART - I did not realize you could do that until too late but looked like a nice option to me-
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Mar 23rd, 2013, 11:39 AM
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Thanks Sunbum. Do you get out and look at things during the tram tour, or do you stay on the vehicle? Also, is the route the same? I have seen the shuttle route on a map but not the tram route.

I think Yarts makes more sense for a smaller group. We are looking at $28 for Yarts for 5, but no admission/no parking. The drawbacks: It appears that the $20 admission would cover up to 7 consecutive days but it's another $28 to take the shuttle. Also, the shuttle to Glacier Point costs $, it looked like $40-50 for our sized group. The parking costs I have not been able to find online but they'd have to be about $70 to pencil out. We are early risers when we need to be so I am sure we can find parking.
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Mar 23rd, 2013, 05:20 PM
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YARTS is the transportation from outside the park into the park. If you are staying in the park you wold not use YARTS. I would not use YARTS to get into the park if I had 5 people. I would pay the one time $20 fee fro 7 consecutive days and hold onto the receipt. Then I would park the car and take the free shuttle. Parking is free inside the park.
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Mar 25th, 2013, 03:34 PM
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Glacer point is one of the most beautiful places in Yosemite. Don't miss it.

You pay one-time fee to enter Yosemite, and parking is free.

If you will be visiting other National Parks, look into buying a park pass - it's per vehicle, not per person. I don't even drive, but I have the pass, so I just show it at the entrance, and the whole family in the car gets in. The same when we go to Muir Woods.
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Mar 25th, 2013, 04:18 PM
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Glacier Point Rd may or may not be open the second week of May. It usually opens mid-May; you'll just have to play that one by ear. If it is open, definitely get up an extra 60 minutes early on your second morning in the park and drive to Glacier Point. The view is absolutely one of the best in the world.

Definitely stay in the park if possible (Yosemite Lodge, Ahwanhee, Curry Village, Housekeeping Camp are all good options). If for some reason, you can only get a room the first night, that's OK -- you can stay at Wawona Hotel or Tenaya Lodge or even Oakhurst on the second night. The 'best' place to stay is the Ahwanhee, however it is a) usually sold out, and b) expensive. Yosemite Lodge is a $180/night motel. But location is everything right? We usually stay in Curry Village (tent cabins) or Housekeeping Camp (our favorite). Whichever you choose, it will be expensive for what you get, except when you look outside and see where you are.

Are you flying out the same day you depart Yosemite? If so, what time? If you have time, the Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias near the south entrance is a good stop on the way out.

I agree with Suzie -- just hot-foot it straight to Yosemite from Napa.

So my itinerary would be:
- arrive Yosemite Valley as early as possible (late afternoon? early evening?), see Bridalveil Falls on the way in, stop on Southside Drive and admire El Capitan and Yosemite Falls.
- next morning, get a good breakfast, you've got a long day ahead of you!
- hike to Vernal Falls and then up to Clark Point and down the pack trail to the Vernal footbridge, or if you have energy and time do the full Vernal - Nevada Falls loop
- rent a bike near Curry Village and ride to the next few locations
- admire Half Dome from the meadow between the Ahwanhee and Northside Drive, and also from the meadow in front of Curry Village
- check out the beautiful dining room and common rooms of the Ahwanhee
- visit Yosemite Museum and Indian Village
- visit Yosemite Falls
- ride around the meadows, visit the river beaches, and explore, then return bikes
- second morning, get up early again!
- check out the Tunnel View as you leave the valley on 41 (and do Bridalveil Falls if you missed it on the way in)
- do Glacier Point if the road is open
- Mariposa Grove (giant sequoias)

But it depends on what you're into, and how active you are.
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