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National Park Journal

National Park Journal Yosemite 2020

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Get the digital version of the National Park Journal with its four separate park editions (Grand Canyon, Rocky Mountain, Yellowstone and Yosemite) to discover all-time favorite road trips to the national parks. From Utah’s dazzling deserts, the adobe-lined streets of New Mexico’s charming towns, Wyoming’s authentic outposts, California’s stunning coastline and Colorado’s mountain towns, we feature all the amazing places to explore en route to the parks, no matter where you begin your adventure. Plus , our insider’s guide includes our top things to do in each national park in 48 hours. Discover the best hiking trails, campsites and attractions in our magazine. Our illustrated wildlife guide will help you discover the best of the park's wild animals, including tips on where to find them, and our packing list ensures you don’t leave anything at home.

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United States
Pocket Outdoor Media, LLC
4 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
editor's note

Our plan was to check out the vista with our two daughters before peeling away from the crowds on Four-Mile Trail, which drops down via switchbacks for four miles to the valley. Just when we were about to give up on securing a parking space, a car 15 feet ahead of us pulled out. We parked, giddy with excitement. It was worth every moment of waiting in the car. As we hiked down the trail, we could see the valley in all its beauty unfold before us. And while there were thousands of people below us exploring the park, we felt as if we had it all to ourselves, sharing it only with other hikers on the trail. It was magical. And it’s a good lesson. In Yosemite, there are iconic places…

1 min.
insider's tips

ONLINE Visit MyYosemitePark.com to find out where to stay and what to do during your vacation. Interested in exploring other national parks? Check us out at nationalparktrips.com. FREE TRIP PLANNER Start planning your dream vacation by requesting our tip-filled Yosemite Trip Planner online. You also can request vacation planning materials from our California partners. WORKSHOPS Join us for our online and in-person National Park Photography Workshop series. With Tamron’s professional photographers, we offer instruction on how to take night skies, sunset and sunrise photos. Learn more at nationalparktrips.com/ workshops. ENEWSLETTER Sign up for our stunning weekly national park travel enewsletter when you are on MyYosemitePark.com. We cover tips on how to avoid crowds, best sights along the way and more. SOCIAL facebook.com/nationalparktrips @nationalparktrips @nationalparktrips YOSEMITE WEATHER: EXPECT VARIABLE CONDITIONS…

1 min.
behind the scenery

By the time preservationist John Muir visited Yosemite in 1868, artists had already captured the beauty of the area, captivating the nation’s imagination. And before them, people had been living in the park for more than 4,000 years. In fact, the last Miwok village in the park was demolished in 1969. That’s 79 years after Yosemite became a national park. While more than 4 million people visited the park last year, there’s an unusual sight tucked in the northwest corner that less than 1 percent of all Yosemite visitors see. Amid towering granite domes lies the 8-mile-long Hetch Hetchy Reservoir (see photo on page 30). It’s liquid gold, supplying more than 2.4 million San Francisco area residents with water. But it also sparked one of the first national conversations on valuing wilderness…

4 min.
park entrance primer

HETCH HETCHY ENTRANCE (Hwy.120) Leave the crowds behind. The farthest north of the four western entrances, the Hetch Hetchy Entrance leads you to one of the park’s quieter areas. In 2018, only 20,805 visitors ventured here during all 12 months of the year in comparison to 4,161,087 visitors to the entire Yosemite National Park. Access it via Hwy.120 and by Evergreen Road. It’s open year round but only during daylight hours, unless you have a backcountry permit. It is believed that the word “Hetch Hetchy” comes from the Miwok word “hetchetici,” which described the seeds of native grass used for food and other things. Lower in elevation than other park areas, Hetch Hetchy has a long hiking season from early spring through fall. Two of North America’s largest waterfalls are here, flowing…

1 min.
life in the fast lane

With about 4 million visitors last year, Yosemite, known for its stunning scenery, has developed a reputation for something quite unwanted: traffic. Best way to avoid it? Climb aboard the Yosemite Area Regional Transportation System best known simply as YARTS. YARTS provides easy connection service to people traveling by air, train and bus. If you’re flying on United Airlines into Fresno, Stockton or Mammoth Lakes, you can have your YARTS fare included on your plane ticket. That way, you just show your boarding pass to a YARTS driver as you board your bus. If you’re traveling by car, the buses make stops along four routes into the park: Hwy. 120/395 starting in Mammoth Lakes; Hwy. 120 starting in Sonora; Hwy. 41 originating in Fresno and Hwy. 140 starting in Merced. Once you’re in Yosemite…

1 min.
yosemite’s top six

1 EAT BREAKFAST AT WAWONA HOTEL (FORMERLY BIG TREES LODGE) This charming restaurant in a Victorian-era hotel has a great breakfast menu to fuel you for the day. 2 EXPLORE THE MARIPOSA GROVE Reopened in June 2018 after a lengthy restoration project, this grove is the largest of the park’s three groves and home to approximately 500 giant sequoias. 3 HIKE MIST TRAIL This trail climbs 1,000 feet to reach the top of 317-foot Vernal Fall in 1.2 miles. It continues nearly 1,000 more feet to the top of 594-foot Nevada Fall. Learn the details on pages 62-63. 4 FLOAT ON THE MERCED RIVER Cool off by floating down the Merced. Go to the boat kiosk in Curry Village, formerly Half Dome Village, to rent your boat and learn the latest regulations. 5 PICNIC AT TENAYA BEACH Off Tioga…