FAQ

How do I pronounce Yosemite?

The word is pronounced as “Yo-SEH-muh-tee” with an accent on the second syllable.

Where is the park located?

The park is in the east central region of California. It is in the south of Lake Tahoe and east of the San Francisco Bay area.

Should I make reservations to visit Yosemite National Park?

No, you don’t need to make any reservations. However, in case you plan to stay overnight, you should have a reservation for lodging, camping or backpacking.

When is the best time to visit the park?

The best time completely depends on you. While most people visit Yosemite during summer, each season offers its own set of advantages. For example, despite the lower number of visitors, fall offers a number of activities such as art and photography.

Are pets allowed?

Yes, pets are allowed at the park. However, you need to abide by a few guidelines. Pets be on a leash that doesn’t exceed six feet and must be taken care of at all times. You should also know where pets are permitted; for example, lodgings inside the park forbid pets while those outside may permit them.

Is riding shuttle buses mandatory?

No, it isn’t as there aren’t any vehicle restrictions in the park. You can drive your car into and around it.

Is there a threat of bears?

Yes, there are many bears across Yosemite. Since they’re always searching for food, you need to store it properly while camping and hiking. This way, you can protect both your food and the bears.

Is there cell phone coverage in Yosemite?

Yes, there is. AT&T voice and 3G data service are available at some parts of Yosemite Valley while voice and EDGE are offered at Tuolumne Meadows. Verizon Wireless offers a wider range of services that reach El Portal, Crane Flat, and Wawona.

How long does the park stay open?

The park is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. However, the entrance stations aren’t always staffed. If you don’t meet a staff member at an entrance station, simply drive in. You can pay the entrance fee or show your pass later when you leave.

Are tire chains necessary?

Yes, you need to have tire chains during spring, fall and winter due to snow and ice on the roads.

When is the Tioga Road Open?

Highway 120, a.k.a. Tioga Road, will be open from May to October. However, these dates may differ due to weather conditions.

When are the Half Dome cables up and when do they come down?

The Half Dome cables are usually set up before Memorial Day weekend, but weather conditions and trail crew availability can delay this. The cables stay up in October through Columbus Day. However, you will need a permit to hike Half Dome. In addition, you should avoid the cable route when the cables are down.

Does the park offer lessons?

Yes, there are numerous lessons offered to those seeking to learn from scratch or simply hone their skills. For instance, you can go for rock climbing lessons and ski and snowboard lessons.