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First trip to Yosemite from UK

Hiking, backpacking, running, biking, climbing, rafting, and other human-powered activities in Yosemite National Park

Moderators: Wickett, dan

Re: First trip to Yosemite from UK

Postby AlmostThere » Wed Feb 15, 2017 6:50 pm

If you take a map and draw a ten mile circle around LYV, you'll encompass the busiest part of the park. That and the John Muir trail heading south from Tuolumne Meadows will have the worst bears - the most habituated ones that sneak up on people and steal their food almost out of their hands, steal their packs whether they are empty or not, break into cars that have a visible ice chest even if it's empty and clean -- the ones that are used to easy calories and know how to get them.

They won't go after your clothes, or you. They will tear into a tent for a stick of gum or a chap stick, or the food wrapper you forgot.

We always get up and chase off the bears when we hear them at the canisters so they won't bat them away into the lake, or off a cliff. They go away if you gang together and look big. No guarantee they won't come back and try again, tho. Not aggressive to people, but sometimes they can be persistent in trying at the canisters.
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Re: First trip to Yosemite from UK

Postby Phil » Wed Feb 15, 2017 7:10 pm

I believe that's still correct- first night from Mono Meadow can't be at LYV or Sunrise. What's happened is that, due to the crush of JMT permits and people trying to backdoor their way in from other trailheads, restrictions have been enhanced. Double check this with an email or a phone call to be sure. It's somewhat dynamic year-to-year these days.

Here's the basic regulations and contact info: https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/wildpermits.htm

But yes, I would strongly recommend Mono as your first choice, Glacier Point as your second.

Renting your bear canister(s) is a good idea. It's $5 for the trip of whatever duration, plus credit card or cash deposit.

The trick is to make sure all your food, garbage, toiletries...anything with a scent is going to fit in the can. Repackage as much of your food as possible to compress it. If you need a second canister, don't hesitate to get one. You should also look on sites like YouTube for how to pack one properly since you're going to be new to it and on-the-fly when you finally have it in your possession.

Bears are present and active everywhere in the park. Illilouette is likely, LYV and Sunrise are almost certain. Around the latter two, somewhat aggressive at times (defined as brazen and pushy, not dangerous), but black bears are virtually harmless in most cases. Make noise, stand your ground, keep your food tight, and you'll run them off pretty easily the vast vast majority of the time. If they do get your food, it's theirs. Don't ever leave your pack unattended, and always remove your canister if you wander off to the loo, etc. At night, bring your packs into the tent or into your vestibule. They will often come into your camp (sleeping or otherwise), often multiple times and from multiple directions. No big deal! You're not food, and that's what they're looking for. 100 feet away from where you're sleeping is what's recommended for overnight canister storage, although perfect-world most of the time. Do your dishes! Obviously don't cook or eat too near or in your tent. Makes sure to empty your pockets and packs of all scented items. You'll be fine. Believe it or not, you'll actually enjoy seeing bears, even if it's somewhat up close and personal.
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