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Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)

J H
Orange County...
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121 posts
Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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Never been there, but considering driving up from LA there and stay a couple of nights. Want to take the kids out since is Spring Break - looking at Tenaya Lodge.

I read the weather is still considered Winter, so there isnt much to do? One thing we wanted to see was Mariposa Grove, but i read is closed. Does that mean just the vehicle road and people can still hike to it?

We might hit Monterey on our way back or something. We just want to go out to keep our sanity.

11 replies to this topic
Grover Beach...
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for Pismo Beach, Cambria, Big Sur
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1. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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Mariposa Grove is closed because a wind event felled several trees. Before that, visitors had to park and hike in, but even that isn't an option right now. Most of your tourism will be limited to the valley floor. High country roads are still closed for, yes, the winter. Waterfalls should be picking up, though. IF you can find lodging at this late date, book it ASAP.

RE: Heading home via Monterey

If you were hoping to drive south via Highway 1 through Big Sur, a section of the roadway washed out in January and is impassable at this time. You will have to opt for Highway 101 to get home. An alternative would be to exit Yosemite via Highway 41 and head toward the Central Coast with a stop in Pismo Beach or even Santa Barbara.

Edited: March 22, 2021, 6:48 am
Washington State
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2. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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Please read the relevant topics in the Top questions on the right side of the page, full TripAdvisor website

J H
Orange County...
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121 posts
3. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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Thanks for the info. So I guess Mariposa groove is a no go then.

I am guessing i will have to drive everyone in the valley since shuttles are not running. Will parking be a problem?

So our activities are limited to hiking. Any good sighting from the car? I guess our options are limited since the high roads are still closed.

Washington State
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for Yosemite National Park
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4. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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Hi

Did any of the topics help you?

Yosemite Valley is only 7 square miles. Get out of the car and look up at the granite cliffs surrounding you. Parking is not a problem if you drive to the Valley in the morning, park, and then begin your on-foot tourism.

Drive-up views from Tunnel View and Valley View.

J H
Orange County...
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121 posts
5. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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@PacificNwFamily.

Hi, I did end up looking at the topics. It appears that we will be constrained to the valley. I originally planned to stay 2 full days but now I am wondering if that is too much time since a lot of things are closed.

What do you think? Maybe a day at Bass Lake?

Santa Clara...
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6. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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Where are you staying? One day is hardly enough. Who is in your group? One day walking around Yosemite Falls and checking out the Village area. Maybe walk to Mirror Lake. 2nd day maybe up part of Mist Trail and Tunnel View. Or can go to Hetch Hetchy area.

J H
Orange County...
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121 posts
7. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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@chinita415

Will be staying at Fish Camp. Just wife and a couple of teens.

Elk Grove...
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8. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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With the seasonal road closures (no Glacier Point, no Tiogo Road / Tuolumne Meadows), you only have the following spots available to you:

Yosemite Valley

Tuolumne Grove

Hetch Hetchy (the dam and waterfalls)

Wawona Pioneer Yosemite History Center

Tuolumne Grove is the second best to Mariposa Grove (which is not open at this time). Short hike - 1 mile in, slightly downhill, 1 mile back). You will see impressive giant sequoia trees.

If you want to do all these, 1 day is not enough. If you only want to drive around and sight-see in the Yosemite Valley only, with no long hike, then 1 day will be enough.

J H
Orange County...
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121 posts
9. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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Wife is mostly interested in the waterfalls. I know one is closed due to some renovation project.

How accessible are the others. I didnt know about the other alternative to Mariposa Grove, will def check that out!

Elk Grove...
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10. Re: Last minute trip couple days next week (mar23)
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You can see the famous Upper Yosemite Falls from just about anywhere in the valley. For the Cascade portion and Lower Yosemite Falls, you drive to the Yosemite Falls parking area. Go on a flat short walk (500 feet or so) to the viewing platform.

The viewing platform/parking for Bridalveil Falls is closed (where normally people go to view that waterfall). But it can be seen at a farther distance from Tunnel View parking lot, as well as just parking along the South Side Drive when you approach Yosemite Village. It is on the right handside, where you are lots of parking spaces open up in the meadow. You can see it even from the car. Get out of the car for better views.

This time of the year (still early), there are a few tiny or small waterfalls with water trickling over the cliff on both sides of Yosemite Valley that are visible. Those would dry up before the summer typically because not enough snow-melt to sustain the water flow.

Another 2 main waterfalls - Vernal Falls and Nevada Falls - are not viewable without at least a short hike. (They can be seen from Glacier Point that one can drive up to, but only in the summer when the road is open.) The trail to view these 2 waterfalls (Mist Trail) are strenuous. So they may not be do-able for you.

The Tueeulala Falls, and Wapama Falls (much bigger) are over at Hetch Hetchy. I am not sure if you can see them from the access road (a loop) or the dam. In a year where snow is heavy one can. But not sure if it is now. There are hiking trails leading up to these waterfalls but in the winter/spring time they can be dangerous when the water volume is high (especially Wapama). I would not recommend hiking to them.

Edited: March 22, 2021, 4:54 pm
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