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[Yosemite]

Which airport is best?

Travelling to and visiting Yosemite National Park. How to get there, what to see or do, and other Yosemite trip advice.

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Which airport is best?

Postby Artanis97 » Wed Feb 18, 2009 1:39 pm

Hello all,

I am brand new to your Forum. From what I have read so far, it looks like a great site. :D

I am planning a trip for May 29-June 6, 2009 out to Yosemite. It will be my first time. I will be backpacking and hiking for the week (still working out the exact itinerary.) But we will be spending most of our time in the valley area.

Here is the question: What airport should I fly into? I am coming from Michigan, will be renting a car upon arrival and driving to the park. Looks like Oakland or San Fran are my best options. With Stockton or Fresno being second choices (but I don't believe there would be a direct flight from Detroit.)

Any thoughts on the best airport? What are the driving distances?

Thanks.
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Postby Wickett » Sun Feb 22, 2009 2:00 am

I live in Sacramento and drive all over the area so here are some times from the destnation to Yosemite Valley.

Sacramento 3.5
San Francisco 3.5
Oakland 3.75
Stockton 2.5
I don't know from fresno.

Its all major freeway until stockton, then mostly two lane roads.

Sacramento is a really quick airport that puts you right onto I-5, without the confusion and traffic of Oakland and San Fran.

Traffic can add an hour or two out here depending on the time and airport. Give some general arrival times and airports and I will let you know the quickest.
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Postby Heybooboo » Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:14 pm

Yosemite Valley proper is about a 2 hour drive from Fresno (FAT). Flying into Fresno will probably be an extra $100 though if you can get a flight to Fresno for the same price as Sac, SF, or Oak. then take it. Driving into Yosemite from Fresno (Hwy 41) you start in the middle of the state and drive into the foothills then Sierra within half an hour. You then enter the National Park from the southern entrance, drive near the Mariposa Grove of Big Trees (Giant Sequoia) then enter the valley through Tunnel View (most spectacular). Flying into SF or Oak. (Bay Area) you're driving across the state from the coast going east and drive over the coastal range then across the San Joaquin Valley then into the foothills and Sierra via Hwy. 120. More time in car, more time in the mountains, but still a magnificant drive. From the bay area you can also drive through Merced, self titled "The Gateway to Yosemite", take Hwy 140 through Mariposa then into the Merced River Canyon which leads into Yosemite Valley, very scenic!

So, it depends on how much you want spend and how much time you want to spend in the car. There is no bad way to enter Yosemite, all are scenic in their own way, each has it's advantages and disadvantages. Keep in touch. I grew up near Merced and was an hour and a half drive from Yosemite. I've spent more than 50 years (since I was 3) camping, hiking, and backpacking in Yosemite, but am in no way an expert on all things Yosemite.

See you on the trail as my wife and I are backpacking during that same time from Happy Isle to Devil's Postpile.
Smarter than the average bear.
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Re: Which airport is best?

Postby samanan » Mon Mar 30, 2009 12:15 pm

Try San Jose. I got some good deals to San Jose from Chicago around the same time frame as you.

To get to Oakland, you will have to fly Southwest. All other major airlines either don't fly to Oakland or don't have non-stop flights.

The time taken from SF or San Jose or Oakland is approx. the same, give or take half hour.

Finally, use Orbitz. Orbitz has a very good feature where you can choose to fly to any airport within 60 miles of the chosen airport. Also, Orbitz allows you to fly into one airport and fly out of another. That can save you close $100 on some itineraries.
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Re: Which airport is best?

Postby SAFNYC » Wed Jun 10, 2009 5:58 pm

Artanis97 wrote:Hello all,

I am brand new to your Forum. From what I have read so far, it looks like a great site. :D

I am planning a trip for May 29-June 6, 2009 out to Yosemite. It will be my first time. I will be backpacking and hiking for the week (still working out the exact itinerary.) But we will be spending most of our time in the valley area.

Here is the question: What airport should I fly into? I am coming from Michigan, will be renting a car upon arrival and driving to the park. Looks like Oakland or San Fran are my best options. With Stockton or Fresno being second choices (but I don't believe there would be a direct flight from Detroit.)

Any thoughts on the best airport? What are the driving distances?

Thanks.


At first I contemplated the same question. I am visiting Yosemite in July. I made my reservation for San Francisco (from New York) but quickly changed it the next day. Frankly I don't want to drive 200 miles just to get to Yosemite after flying for 6 hours. I changed my reservation to fly into LAX then to Fresno. There was no extra charge. I got a ticket from Delta for $350 round trip. I am also renting a car at Fresno Airport.
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Postby oakroscoe » Thu Jun 11, 2009 1:36 am

Wow, 350 from NYC to Fresno roundtrip is a screaming deal. Congrats on that one.
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Postby SAFNYC » Fri Jun 12, 2009 7:05 pm

oakroscoe wrote:Wow, 350 from NYC to Fresno roundtrip is a screaming deal. Congrats on that one.


Tell me about it! I lucked out.
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Driving times to Yosemite

Postby dan » Sat Aug 01, 2009 4:42 pm

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Postby kurt25 » Mon Sep 21, 2009 12:12 am

Yosemite Valley proper is about a 2 hour drive from Fresno (FAT). Flying into Fresno will probably be an extra $100 though if you can get a flight to Fresno for the same price as Sac, SF, or Oak. then take it. Driving into Yosemite from Fresno (Hwy 41) you start in the middle of the state and drive into the foothills then Sierra within half an hour..
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Postby Wickett » Mon Sep 21, 2009 12:24 am

kurt25 wrote:Yosemite Valley proper is about a 2 hour drive from Fresno (FAT). Flying into Fresno will probably be an extra $100 though if you can get a flight to Fresno for the same price as Sac, SF, or Oak. then take it. Driving into Yosemite from Fresno (Hwy 41) you start in the middle of the state and drive into the foothills then Sierra within half an hour..


Welcome to the forums, just a quick piece of advice as it has bitten me, check the date of the post and when their trip is. You replied to an old post.

Hopefully I will see you on the trails!
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