Let's Travel To....YOSEMITE





We FINALLY visited Yosemite!! If you haven't been, stop what you’re doing and book your next trip to this National Park gem! Now, as you may or may not know, to book a campsite in many national parks you have to reserve far in advance. Especially with a popular park like Yosemite. If you’re not much of a camper, you have nearby hotels and AirBnB’s outside of the park that you can book. We like to minimize the amount of driving by camping inside the park BUT since this was a last minute trip, we weren't able to find availability.


Where we stayed: Shoutout to Nick and his brother Cesar who took on the responsibility of finding a place to stay and found Yosemite Lakes RV Resort. It was only about a 5 minute drive to the west gate entrance and an additional 30 to 40 minutes to Yosemite Valley.

While campsites in Yosemite range from $26 to $50, this was $41 a night for a campsite reservation. Not a camper? They have cabins and cottages that sleep up to 6 people AND some are even pet friendly! #YoureWelcome. They also have yurts that have everything, including the kitchen sink! That’s right, these yurts have A/C and satellite TV along with all the other necessities. In addition, the grounds have an activity center with WiFi, games, puzzles and TV’s. 


If you have a campsite reservation, the actual spots are on a first come-first served basis so you have to drive around for a site you like. Ours was pretty perfect, TBH! It was a nice corner with privacy right next to the river that flows through.

Our campsite


There’s a gas station and a mini mart at the entrance but no market. We bought our groceries at Mar-Val Market, which was a 25 minute drive from the campground.

Day 1: On our first day we headed into the park with no set plan but to explore! As we drove through the valley, we made a quick stop to walk the trail up to Bridalveil Falls. It was a very easy walk and even wheelchair accessible from the parking lot side.






Cesar and Carol

As we drove to our next trail, we realized just how hectic it is to find parking. That's when we decided to find parking ASAP and use the free park shuttle.

*TIP: Make sure you get to the park before 10 am. The earlier the better. Anytime after that you will struggle to find parking like we did on our second day.


Shuttle Stop #16


There are 19 shuttle stops scattered through the Yosemite Valley. We parked at the Yosemite Lodge and walked over to our stop, numero 8, to head over to stop 16. We headed on our first full trail that leads to Vernal Falls and goes along the Mist Trail. The start of this trail leads you to so many different trails within Yosemite.


See...?

The views along the trail were beautiful and, since it was all uphill, we stopped plenty of times for some pictures.





Vernal Falls Bridge


Start of  Mist Trail

This trail was paved and so accessible that we even saw a guy pushing a stroller (and thought he was absolutely nuts). However, once you get passed the bridge, the trail is no longer paved. Keep in mind that all the mist will make the trail wet and you will have to be careful and watch your step. Here is Nick super excited about getting to the falls:



Can you tell I'm actually soaked?

To get to the very top of the falls, the trail has a lot of water and puddles so be sure you have comfy shoes. I actually wore Chaco Footwear and it was both comfy and perfect for the puddles! I just walked straight through them while everyone else had to be careful and jump over them. Suckers! We all made it to the top a little wet but it was actually pretty perfect after the hot hike up.





Next, we took the Yosemite bus again and it dropped us off at our next trail: Mirror Lake Trail. This was the perfect trail to end our day since it was an easy stroll. Once we got to the lake, we found a nice spot to stop and have our pre-made sandwiches.



Beauty along the trail




Mirror Lake
We called it a day and went back to our campsite to relax, make dinner and drink wine...obvs!

Relaxing on the hammock right next to the river
Day 2: We got off to a later start on this day. I think we were all a bit tired so we took our time waking up, having breakfast and getting ready.

We headed into the valley again but being as it was late in the morning, we weren't able to find any parking. Not kidding, folks, it gets crowded! So instead we headed out to Glacier Point. Along the drive, we stopped at a few spots to get some pictures.






The drive over to Glacier Point was about an hour but once we got closer to the final destination, traffic was in full force with people waiting to get in and find a parking spot. The free shuttle doesn't make a stop here so you do have to drive. But, once you start noticing all the traffic, you might be better off finding a parking spot along the road and walking over. 

As soon as we found parking, we headed over to see the spectacular views and have our packed lunch.



I really like this picture Nick took


Our last stop of the day was to check out Lower Yosemite Falls. It was a very easy and paved short trail to the falls. Here are Carol and Cesar on the trail:



Yosemite Falls

Ta-Da!



Another cool photo by Nick


I loved this park so much and I am so glad we visited this summer. There's so much we didn't get to see in the 3 days and I hope to be back soon. I don't have much experience but I'll gladly answers any questions anyone has. 



Comments

  1. Great recap!
    I love Yosemite
    Can't wait to go back !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I loved it too. Hoping to be back there next summer for a backpacking trip with my girlfriends :)

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