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How long is too long??

PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 12:39 pm
by Erik
Hi everyone. This is my first post to your forum. i found it last night while searching for some info on Yosemite and i was hoping for a little advice. I have a week of vacation coming up at the end of March. March 24- Apr. 2 to be exact. I took this week off with the intention of going down to Orlando for the Photoshop world conference that is being held that week. My original plans were to go down to Sanibel Island (near Ft. Myers) and spend a few days there and drive up to Orlando at the end of the week to go to the conference.
I visited yellowstone last june to do some wildlife and landscape photography and had gotten the idea then that I would like to do as many National Parks as possible for vacations. So i started playing around with airfare, hotels and rental cars to get out there and what I came across really put me in a dilemma. Both trips will cost right about the same . Orlando, I'd be driving down so gas, food, hotels, in both orlando and sanibel all together i'm looking at around $1600 for the week. Yosemite, same week , flying from knoxville to fresno, staying at Yosemite View Lodge in El Portal and a rental car , = $1456. + food and misc.
Now, this is what is giving me just a bit of hesitation to do Yosemite. I understand that there will be still road closures at that time and I probably wont get to see a good bit of the park. So, If i'm going there to do nature and landscape photography is 7-8 days just way too long to be there?? What other suggestions would you have to do for other things that would be accesible for a photographer to do while i'm there?
Should I not stay all 8 nights in El Portal, (maybe 4) and then move to s different location???
Any suggestions would be great and very helpful.

PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 5:51 pm
by Dave Miller
I think a lot will depend on how much you really want to do. I could spend 7 days in Yosemite during the Spring and still feel like I want more. Depending on the snow levels, there are great snowshoe hiking trips off of Badger Pass and Crane Flat. Also, in El Portal near Valley View Lodge is Hite Cove Trail, one of the best wildflower trails near Yosemite. That time of year could provide some pretty good displays.

Some areas I would consider that time of year would be :
Carizo Plain and surrounding areas can have spectacular wildflower displays that time of year.
San Francisco (Pt. Reyes National Seashore, Muir Woods, Mt Tamalpias)
Lake Tahoe
Big Sur, Monterey, Carmel

Hope it helps and you find your stay in out lovely state enjoyable!

Re: How long is too long??

PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 11:44 pm
by dan
Unless you do a lot of snowshoeing or skiing, I say it's too long for that time of year. There's also not a lot of wildlife like you see in Yellowstone, Everglades, or Denali.

That said, Yosemite Valley is incredible, although it's too early for the falls to be at full force. I think early June is the best time--lots of water in the falls, but the full summer crowds haven't arrived yet. For a quiet time of year, early fall (Sept., Oct.) is good and the Tioga Road is typically still open. Little or no water in the waterfalls though.

Re: How long is too long??

PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 11:21 am
by Erik
[quote="dan"]Unless you do a lot of snowshoeing or skiing, I say it's too long for that time of year. There's also not a lot of wildlife like you see in Yellowstone, Everglades, or Denali.

Thanks. That's kinda what I was thinking as well. Now i'm really undecided as to what I want to do that week!!!

PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 12:45 pm
by hotrod4x5
I love Yosemite and could easily fill that many days, even in the "off" season. That being said, you might like to see some other places as well. Check out Sequoia and Kings Canyon which are not too far.

PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 1:09 pm
by Erik
I thought about Sequoia. How accessible will that be?
I was thinking to do Yosemite for 4 days then move hotels and then do sequoia and kings for the other 3 or 4 before i leave out of Fresno to head back home.

PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 7:45 pm
by AlmostThere
You have a two hour drive down to Fresno then a one - one and a half hour drive into Sequoia. The road into Kings Canyon will still be closed. Road into Sequoia is plowed, as there are resorts and whatnot and many snow sport trails. You will run into the same problems there and moreso since it is generally higher elevation than Yosemite Valley. (I have been snowshoeing in Sequoia lately.) Further down 198 there are a few places that will be freer of snow - the trail to Marble Falls and some short trails around the Kaweah, some petroglyphs, visitor center stuff. However, you may be able to walk around the Giant Forest.

PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:07 am
by Erik
ok, well it's looking more and more like I'll be visiting Orlando for Photoshop world with a sidetrip down to Sanibel Island to fill up the week. Guess i'll do Yosemite some other time. I'm planning a 2 week trip along the maine coast and into New Hampshire and vermont in October but I still have another week left after that so maybe I'll save it for a trip out to Yosemite in May or June in 2012.
Thanks everyone for your information, I really appreciate it.