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Yosemite City Trip

A view of the Merced River and North Dome at Yosemite Park

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Where to Stay Where to Eat What to See & Do


On your final day at Yosemite, rent a bike at Curry Village or Yosemite Lodge (from April to October or November, weather pending) for another fantastic way to get around the park — there are more than 12 miles of paved bike paths. You can also sign up for horseback riding during the warmer months. There are two-hour and half-day rides, or an all-day ride for experienced riders available at the stables in Yosemite Valley, Wawona or Tuolumne Meadows. In Yosemite, sport fishers will also be pleased with the 58 permanent streams that have a combined length of 770 miles. Expect good fishing all summer and into the winter on the Merced River and on the stretch of the Tuolumne River above Hetch Hetchy. If you don't know how to fish, guides are available to teach you the skills to catch all kinds of trout. The season for stream and river fishing begins on the last Saturday in April and continues throught November 15.

While it’s sad to leave the splendor of the park, this last day is certainly a fitting salute.
Today you'll be exiting the park through Highway 41, which means you get to explore the southern side. You can stop at the Wawona Hotel for lunch, and then walk off your meal while exploring the Pioneer History Center nearby, or purchasing last minute gifts and provisions at the Pioneer Gift & Grocery. As you make your exit through the south gate, you wouldn’t be the first to be plotting your return — Yosemite's grandeur is not something many would ever tire of.

Go horeseback riding in the Tuolumne Meadows


• The Yosemite entrance fee is $30 per vehicle (valid for seven days), and only $15 per person if on foot, bicycle, horseback, motorcycle or non-commercial bus. If you're planning to visit a couple of parks in a year's time, buy the "America the Beautiful — The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Annual Pass" for $80 (available at the National Parks official website).

•A Yosemite Pass (annual) is $60. Seniors only have to pay a one-time $10 fee for a lifetime pass and a free access pass is granted to people with permanent disabilities.

•Fee free days for 2015 include:
January 19, 2015: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
February 14-16, 2015: Presidents Day Weekend
April 18-19, 2015: National Park Week Opens
August 25, 2015: Founders Day
September 26, 2015: National Public Lands Day
November 11, 2015: Veterans Day

Wildlife, including black bear and mountain lions, roam in Yosemite. Keep a safe distance from all wildlife. Never leave any kind of food or drink in your car or campsite overnight.

•Temperatures can vary widely since elevations range from 2,000 feet to 13,000 feet; bring clothes that you can layer.

The park is large. Roads are narrow, twisting and sometimes one-way. Allow time to get between points. Take advantage of ranger programs to learn more about the park. Obtain a schedule of programs at visitor centers or lodging in the area.

Want to get closer to the park? The nonprofit Yosemite Association, 209-379-2321, offers a wide range of seminars — photography, painting, birding, natural history, wildflowers and family treks — lasting two to five days; they're led by experts in their fields.

For more information, visit the Yosemite National Park official website

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