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Guide to Yosemite (1920) by Ansel F. Hall


On the banks of the Merced where once stood Haw-kaw-koo'-e-tah, the home of the Yo-ham'-i-te tribe, is Yosemite Village. The accompanying map, drawn May 1, 1920, indicates all places of public interest, but on account of contemplated building activities several changes may be expected within the next few seasons. Yosemite has recently been granted a second-class postoffice with branches at Camp Curry and Yosemite Lodge and with free delivery service to camps on the valley floor.

At the U. S. National Park Service Administrative Building are the offices of the Park Superintendent, Chief Ranger and other executive officers. In front of the building is a free information bureau with a park ranger in charge. Government maps and bulletins may here be obtained free or at a very nominal cost. Adjacent is a motorists’ information bureau maintained by the California State Automobile Association. At the left entrance is the telegraph and telephone office maintained by the government. The Yosemite Museum, which contains many excellent exhibits of the flora and fauna of the region is temporarily housed in this building.

Hotel accommodations in Yosemite Valley are limited to one hotel and two large hotel-camps. The Sentinel Hotel in Yosemite Village, though offering good service and a splendid cuisine, has been outgrown and will soon be superseded by a very much larger and more modern building.

Camp Curry, a large hotel-camp about one mile east of the village on the road to Happy Isles, is delightfully situated beneath Glacier Point, an ideal spot from which to view the

Map of Yosemite Village
[click to enlarge]
famous “Fire Fall,” a beautiful cataract of fire which is nightly pushed from the cliff 3000 feet above. The camp has a wide reputation for its democratic atmosphere.

Yosemite Lodge, formerly called Yosemite Camp, is the other large hotel-camp, and is located one-half mile north of Yosemite Village near the azalia-bordered Yosemite Creek. It offers most attractive views of Yosemite Falls and is well maintained by the Yosemite National Park Company.

At the rim of the valley is Glacier Point Hotel with every modern convenience, and an unsurpassable view of Yosemite and the High Sierra. Lodges are maintained at the Mariposa Grove of Big Trees and at Lake Tenaya and Merced Lake in the High Sierra.

The general store is adequately stocked to supply the tourist and camper with all his needs— supplies, clothing, sporting goods, drugs, etc. The Housekeeping Camps Department supplies all kinds of camping or outing equipment at very reasonable rates. Opposite the store is the bakery and creamery, and the meat market.

During the season of 1920 the general garage will be moved from its location near Yosemite Lodge to a point just southeast of the new Rangers’ Club House. A large free storage garage is maintained by Camp Curry. Gasoline and oils may be obtained at several service stations on the floor of the valley and at a few outposts on the park roads.

The Government Pavilion, on the banks of the Merced near the center of the village, is a social center for dances, lectures, moving pictures, etc. There is also an excellent entertainment and dance hall at Camp Curry.

Religious services are held in Yosemite Chapel which faces the postoffice.

In the village are four studios, two of them doing photographic work exclusively, and the other two specializing in oils and water-colors. Studios are also maintained at Yosemite Lodge and Camp Curry.

There are two large swimming tanks, one at Yosemite Lodge and one at Camp Curry. Both are open to the general public.

Between the village and Camp Curry is the picturesque Le Conte Memorial Lodge, which is sustained by the Sierra Club. The Yosemite Library is housed here and hundreds of photographs, flower specimens, maps, etc., make the building a favorite of the thousands of visitors. Each year the Extension Division of the University of California arranges a series of “Le Conte Memorial Lectures,” which are here delivered. They are exceptionally interesting and all well attended, for in them the most eminent scientific authorities interpret the natural history, folklore, geology and other subjects exemplified by the Yosemite region.

North of the Merced and about a third of a mile from the center of the village is the schoolhouse and a group of other government buildings. One of these is the menagerie and contains several wild animals captured in the region. The chief exhibits are a pair of California mountain lions, and a number of bear. In this vicinity is also the quaint old Yosemite Cemetery, where rest many of the pioneers of the early days.

Near Yosemite Lodge is the Yosemite Hospital with a competent physician and surgeon in charge. During part of the season a dentist is also in attendance.

About twenty camp grounds have been prepared for the free use of the public by the Park Service. Water is piped to these localities and a sanitation system provided for. Applications for camp sites should be made at the National Park Service office in Yosemite Village. Those without outfits, who desire to establish camps, may arrange at the Housekeeping Camps Department of the Yosemite National Park Company (at Camp 17, a quarter mile east of Sentinel Bridge and north of the river) to rent all necessary equipment. This will be delivered and set up ready for occupancy. It is advisable to arrange in advance for the outfit desired.

An auto-bus service (fare 10c and 25c) to all points on the valley floor provides a quick and convenient means of transportation. All main roads are paralleled by trails for the use of pedestrians.

Information as to the hiring of horses and automobiles, arrangements for camping tours, and about many other items of general interest, is contained in the “Circular of General Information regarding Yosemite National Park,” which may be obtained free at any of the government information bureaus.

Next: Yosemite RoadsContentsPrevious: Yosemite Valley

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