Yosemite Park Profile/Information Summary

An Overview:

Please note: despite some incorrect rumors, private automobiles are always welcome & admitted to Yosemite National Park.

Yosemite National Park includes some 1,200 square miles of the central Sierra Nevada. Park elevation ranges from 2,000 feet to more than 13,000 feet above sea level. Its major attractions include alpine wilderness, three groves of Giant Sequoia trees and the crown jewel–the glacially-carved Yosemite Valley complete with world famous waterfalls, cliffs and one-of-a-kind rock formations. This Yosemite/Gold Country site has a waterfall page. We’ve also included some of our favorite photos of Yosemite that you’re welcome to view. We are in debt to the National Park Service for providing us with much of this latest information.


Park attendance has been averaging over 4,000,000 visitors a year. Most come in June, July and August. Fewer visit in December, January and February. Weekends see the biggest numbers. The park is open 24 hours a day, year-round and, in fact, many prefer the scenery and less crowded conditions that the off-season offers.

Visiting Yosemite during the off season? Please consult our climate/how to dress page and also the Running Water–beautiful but dangerous page.

How to Contact Yosemite National Park:
Yosemite National Park
P.O. Box 577
Yosemite, Ca. 95389
Phone: (209) 372-0200
E-Mail: see below

At this time, there is no general public internet e-mail access to Yosemite National Park. If you have questions, most should be answered in this in-depth web site. Others can be answered through the Yosemite telephone system. Also feel free to send e-mail queries about Yosemite to the administrator of this Yosemite/Gold Country web site: [email protected]

Additional park information is also available by writing the:
Public Information Office
Yosemite National Park
P.O. Box 577
Yosemite, Ca. 95389

or by calling:
(209) 372-0265, Monday through Friday (except holidays) from 9:00am to 5:00pm.

Directions to Yosemite National Park and road conditions.
Climate/How to Dress.


Entrance is now $20.00 (USA) per private, non-commercial vehicle for a 7-day stay. The cost for an annual Yosemite Park Pass is now $40.00 (USA) and that’s good for unlimited visits to Yosemite for one year. The Yosemite Park Pass may be purchased at the park’s entrance stations.

Individuals 17 or older arriving on foot, horseback, motorcycle or bus: $10 (valid seven days).

Other Passes: Use your National Parks Pass (available for $50 on-line or at the park’s entrance stations) or Golden Passes (Golden Age, Golden Eagle and Golden Access) for park entry. Once obtained, all of these passes allow free entrance into all U.S. national parks! In Yosemite, the Golden Passes are available at park entrance stations.



Late Breaking News


There are 169 miles of paved roads and 840 miles of trails in the park. There are 9 miles of paved bike paths in Yosemite Valley. The park’s major sites can be viewed by automobile. Some trails and facilities are wheelchair accessible. Food and groceries are available in the park and also can be found in abundance in nearby Gold Country.


Regularly scheduled ranger-led walks, talks and evening programs. Concession-operated bus tours, guided horseback rides and bicycle rentals.

Lodging information.
Camping Information.
Wilderness Permits.

Recommended Activities/Park Use:

Viewing waterfalls and well-known rock features in Yosemite Valley is the most popular activity. We also suggest: visting Mariposa Grove to see the Giant Sequoias and the historic Wawona area. A drive or hike to Glacier Point offers an overlook with a commanding view of Yosemite Valley, Half Dome and the High Sierra. A drive to Tuolumne Meadows along Tioga Road offers great views and great hiking–several trailheads are here.

Basic Visit Recommendations:

Stay for a minimum of 4 hours to tour Yosemite Valley. At least 2 days will be required to visit all of the most popular sites and areas in the park.

Must Read Bear Information:

Unless you’re visiting the park in the dead of winter, every person should be informed on bears in the park. We have lots of information, including a bear video, for you to access here.

Visitor Impacts:

Because of congestion and overcrowding, automobile access may, on rare occasions, be temporarily restricted into Yosemite. Busy holiday weekends such as Memorial Day, 4th of July and Labor Day are vulnerable to this restricted access. If restrictions are necessary, they are generally in effect for only an hour or two from mid-morning to mid-afternoon.

Adjacent Visitor Attractions:

If you visit Yosemite without visting the surrounding Gold Country you are missing a golden opportunity to see this most historic and scenic part of California. Gold Country is filled with great opportunities to enjoy a myriad of activities–everything from gold panning, fishing, hiking, enjoying water sports and snow skiing to exploring historic gold rush communities. Be sure to check out all of these and more by accessing our Yosemite/Gold Country homepage.

Other Yosemite Links


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