Tourist attractions and places of interest

USA

Yosemite National Park, California

Pronunciation

Yo-sem-it-eee

Location

On the western side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, some considerable distance east of San Francisco.

Access

The park can be accessed from both the east and the west during the summer, but only from the west during the winter.

The Tioga Pass road is closed in winter and sometimes doesn't reopen until as late as May.

I-80 remains open year round, and I think all the other passes north of Yosemite (US50, California State Road 88, California State Road 4 and California State Road 108 - the Sonora Pass) do as well except perhaps during and immediately after a heavy snowfall.

Size

1,189 square miles. For comparison, the English county of Lancashire has an area of 1,185 square miles.

What to See and Do

View the beautiful steep sided Yosemite valley.

After parking at Curry Village, take the free shuttle bus to the various Valley areas including Happy Isles, Mirror Lake and Yosemite Falls. Picture (24KB)

Drive up to Glacier Point for magnificent views of Half Dome and the valley floor far below.

Drive the highly scenic Tioga Pass Road over the Sierras, stopping to admire Tuolumne Meadows.

Plan to Ban Private Vehicles

The following news story appeared in the Daily Brief on 26-Nov-97: "Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt announced plans yesterday to ban most automobile traffic from Grand Canyon, Yosemite and Zion national parks by 2000. The measure was reportedly prompted by the overcrowding and polluting of the parks."

Access to the park for visitors will presumably be provided by buses.

There have been plans to ban cars from Yosemite Valley for many years. While this would be both highly desirable and quite feasible for day use visitors, it doesn't seem to me to be a realistic proposition for people staying in the camp sites.

There have also been plans to introduce reservations for day use during the summer. Apparently this was tried during the summer of 1997 but was withdrawn due to general public objection to it.

Some Ideas for Places to Stay


California

National Parks

Scenic Roads

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