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RV camping in Yosemite

PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2007 11:33 pm
by archive
Author: Carol (
Date: 12-05-03 21:50

Hi Dan, we are first timers to Yosemite and will be traveling in a 25' motorhome, hopefully in the end of May. During our trip we would like to visit the Village but do not necessarily want to stay in a noisy campground. Which campground do you recommend that is close to the village but not as crowded or noisy? Also, does the campground come with water and electricity hookups?

Re: RV camping
Author: Dan Anderson (10.11.12.---)
Date: 12-05-03 22:18

All the campgrounds in the Valley are noisy in summer.
However, end of May shojuld be OK. If you go before school is out in June or after Labor Day, it's a lot better than summer.

No campground in the park has hookups, but the private campgrounds outside the park have hookups. There is a dump station in the Valley.

I say it's worth your while to stay in the valley. It's a lot better being "right there" and staying there and seeing the valley in all it's glory.

For more campground details, see

Re: RV camping
Author: Ed Carroll (
Date: 03-04-04 15:51

I have a 37ft RV. I am trying to find out if the roads in Yosemite are restricted?

Re: RV camping
Author: Dan Anderson (
Date: 03-04-04 16:16

RVs up to 40' are allowed on all the main roads and park campgrounds.

Re: RV camping
Author: Greg Mooney (155.94.78.---)
Date: 07-12-04 06:48

Hi All,

Greetings from the wee emerald isle. My friends and I (8 in total) are planning a trip to yosemite in april 05, and I was hoping to get some info from seasoned RVers and campers alike.
We want to spend 5-7 days in the park, see as much of it as we can and do 1-2 2 day hikes camping in the wilderness.
As we dont have any Bears or lions, snakes or other nasties back home any tips apart from the usual guide book 'Dont feed the bears' warnings would be greatfully appreciated.

Thank you.

Slán leat.

Re: RV camping
Author: Dan Anderson (
Date: 07-12-04 12:59

First, what NOT to worry about: mountain lions are rarely seen. I've never seen one in the wild. Snakes can't survive the freezing winters, so if you in the High Sierra, no problem. They are rarely seen in Yosemite Valley.

Bears are a problem. In a campsite, heavy-duty metal lockers are provided in each campsite to store food. If you are driving somewhere, food must be out-of-sight in the trunk of your car (trunk may be called "boot" in Ireland).

If you are camping away from the road (backpacking), you need to bring a bear container to store food. It is made out of heavy-duty plastic that bear's cannot break into. If you don't have one (and if you are from Ireland, you probably don't), you can rent (hire?) a bear container where you get your wilderness permit. The cost is nominal--I think $2-5.

The other nasty is mosquitoes. To control mosquitoes, bring along or buy mosquitoe repelant (it should have the chemical "DEET" in it--a common brand name is "Cutter's").

Summers in Yosemite are mild. It rarely rains, except for occasional afternoon thunderstorms.

Grizzly bears eat you, but they have been extinct in California since around 1921.

If you are coming from sea level to over 8000 or 9000 feet, you should acclimate to the thin air. Sleeping overnight at high elevations helps. Two nights are better, before doing anything strenuous.

Have fun.

Re: RV camping
Author: Stacy Schoep (
Date: 09-23-04 05:59

We are traveling in a 25' RV to Yosemite July '05 and would like to drive to Glacier Point. Are there any RV length limitations on the road to the top?

Your site has been very helpful in our planning and we thank you very much.

Stacy Schoep

Re: RV camping
Author: norm (
Date: 01-16-05 20:01

Great advice Dan. However, one note regarding snakes. Rattlesnakes DO live in the high Sierra. While I have never encountered one in Yosemite, I have encountered several over the years, at altitudes of 6000 to 7000 feet, in the Sierra just outside of the Northen Yosemite.

rv'ing Yosemite

PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2007 11:34 pm
by archive
Author: Fred von Sholly
Date: 05-12-03 11:17

I plan to travel from Las Vegas to Yosemite in a large (40 ft. ) motorhome. Any suggestions for a route? Where can I drive and park for the night in the park? Are there places to avoid? I will be towing a car.

Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: Dan Anderson
Date: 05-16-03 22:22

The maximum length for RVs in Yosemite Park campgrounds is 40 feet.

Overnight parking outside campgrounds and lodging is not allowed in the park, and rangers will wake you up, so I suggest a campground reservation.

Any of the highways in are OK, but the steepest is Highway 120 up to Tioga Pass (almost 10000 feet). It's also scenic through the High Sierra Country. All park highways have narrow hair-pin turns at once place or another.

Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: wasserball
Date: 06-04-03 20:52

When there are 5 or more cars behind you, please be curteous and pull over to allow faster cars go by. That's the law in CA. Thanks!

Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: William Cook
Date: 03-12-04 18:09

Try Yosemite Lake Resort.

They take web reservations, and are used to accomodating RV'ers. They are located 5 miles from the West Gate. And yes, I work for them!

Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: Jerome Fink
Date: 04-24-04 08:27

I would recommend Yosemite Pines RV Park for Route 120 from the Bay Area and Northern California. Yosemite Pines is probably the nicest park with the most amenities on this route and the closest to the Yosemite's entrance for an RV Park with hookups.

I would recommend High Sierra Rv Park if coming from Southern California or Nevada


Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: kentucky
Date: 11-30-04 11:12

Hey there..

Heading to Yosemite after Christmas in our RV. We are new to this. Will we need chains on the RV? If so which tires need to be chained? Please forgive my ignorance. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!

Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: Dan Anderson
Date: 11-30-04 12:04

Yes you need chains in Yosemite in Winter. The roads in the Valley are usually clear of snow, but that can change at any time if there is a storm. Chains are required in Yosemite in Winter.

You need 2 chains for the tires that provide the "drive." For front-wheel drive, that is the 2 front tires. For rear-wheel drive, which includes all RVs I know of, it is on the 2 rear tires. If you have 4 rear tires, you still need only 2 chains.

It's worth it to pay a chain installer $20 or so to do this if you haven't done this often. They are trained and wear a brightly-colored vest in chain-up areas.

Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: Pam
Date: 01-10-05 17:27

We are traveling to Yosemite in early March. We have a 34 foot rig.

We are coming from Redwood City and traveling to Yosemite Valley. It seems that both Highways 120 and 140 will get us there. However, Highway 120 seems shorter but has a small connector road, New Big Oak Flat Road into Yosemite Valley, where we will be camping.

Any tips on traveling these roads in an RV? Is 140 longer but less tricky to navigate? On average, do these roads remain clear of snow at this time of the year, barring any significant snow fall in the window of time we will be traveling?

Thanks for any help you can offer.

Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: Dan Anderson
Date: 01-13-05 08:49

140 is the all-weather highway into Yosemite and is recommended in Winter. It was recently widened to allow easier access by bus, which also means it's good for RVs.

120 is shorter. The New Big Oak Flat Road is not a small connector road. It is part of Highway 120.

I would prefer 120. 140 has a steep downhill section where it heads down into the Merced River canyon from the west. During storms or bad weather use 140.

Heavy snow is unlikely in March, but its still winter and it can still snow. Watch the weather reports.

Both highways are plowed all winter. However, during storms the plows can't keep up with the storms. During night, plowing is not done.

Re: rv'ing Yosemite
Author: Crystal
Date: 02-17-05 16:23

We have a 45' motorhome, towing a pick up. Traveling from San Francisco area to see Yosemite. Our end destination is near China Lake. Any suggestions on rv parks near our route that will accommodate all 68' of us
and still be close to the park ?? Thanks in advance for any help.
Safe travels to all !

RVing in Yosemite

PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2007 11:35 pm
by archive
Author: Pam
Date: 02-09-03 20:00

We are planning a trip to Yosemite near the end of June in our 24' motorhome with tow vehicle attached. Which campground do you recommend for this size of RV and tow vehicle? I would like to stay in Lower Pines but the discriptions of the camp sites are confusing and I can't tell if they are tent sites or will fit a RV.
Thanks for any help.

Re: RVing in Yosemite
Author: Dan Anderson
Date: 02-09-03 21:37

All the Pines Campgrounds (Upper, Lower, and North) allow RVs. When you make the reservation on the web, make sure you reserve a "trailer site," not a "tent site." There's a dump station just outside Upper Pines Campground. No hookups.

Only Upper Pines Campgrouns is open year-round.
- Dan

Re: RVing in Yosemite
Date: 12-07-03 17:42


Re: RVing in Yosemite
Author: Dan Anderson
Date: 12-07-03 18:07

No hookups inside Yosemite National Park.

Large RV's in Yosemite
Author: Jim Maddocks
Date: 03-18-04 12:38

Is there a RV size limitation to the camp site in the valley or tuolunme? I have a 34 foot RV. Will it fit in any of the trailer camp sites in yosemite? If not then how many site could handle this size RV?

Re: Large RV's in Yosemite
Author: Dan Anderson
Date: 03-18-04 12:42

The size limit is 40'. For details, see "Camping" at the Yosemite FAQ, click on "FAQ" at the top of this webpage.

yosemite w/ rv 1st time

PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2007 11:36 pm
by archive
Author: Chris Tagert
Date: 11-20-05 21:37

Just got an RV (26') and want to stay inside the park. I understand that RV camping is limited. What are my options?


Chris Tagert

Re: yosemite w/ rv 1st time
Author: Dan Anderson
Date: 11-21-05 10:09

RVs are restricted to 40', so it seems you're fine. Some of the primitive campgrounds outside of Yosemite Valley don't allow RVs (because they are at the end of narrow dirt roads). The Valley campgrounds are not a problem--however, they don't have hookups. There's a sanitary dump station.

One campground in the Valley, Upper Pines Campground, is open in the Valley year around. Reservations are not a problem except popular holiday weekends and the summer.

My favorite place to look for campground reservations is the unofficial website at yosemitesites dot com

It shows for each campground for each day how many sites are available to reserve.

Maps to most campgrounds are available by clicking on "Maps" at the top of this webpage.

Re: yosemite w/ rv 1st time
Author: Karen
Date: 04-19-06 11:12

i need directions an' if u can, tell me the the mos' interesting places to go to.

First time in Yosemite in RV

PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2007 11:37 pm
by archive
Author: Glen (---.212-50-167-124.karoo.KCOM.COM)
Date: 04-25-03 13:49

We are visiting yosemite in aug 2003 , we will be in a rv 34ft , all the pines camp ground seem to be full , has anyone any suggestions as to which campground would be siutable . 5 adults no kids .

Author: Mike (
Date: 04-25-03 20:20

My in-laws have a 34-36' RV, I don't think any of the camgrounds can accomodate one that big.

Author: Dan Anderson (
Date: 04-26-03 09:48

The maximum RV length is 40' in the Pines Campgrounds in the Valley.

There are commercial campgrounds in the foothills to the west of Yosemite along highways 41, 140, and 120.