Camping in Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park is one of the oldest parks in the United States. It covers over 1000 miles of vast meadows, waterfalls, steep mountains, giant Sequioa trees, and wildlife. Every year, 3 to 4 million people travel from all over the world to explore and camp in the park. We highly recommend visiting Yosemite while you're here because there is no where else quite like it!
Yosemite has 13 main camping areas with about 1500 different camp sites. Half require a reservation in advance, while the others operate on a first-come, first-served basis. It is BEST to reserve a site as soon as you know your camping dates. People from all over the world come to visit Yosemite and sites fill up fast!
-Reserve at www.recreation.gov or call (877) 444-6777
-Price per site: $12 - $26
-Amenities: range from showers and flush toilets to non-potable water and vault
toilets. Before you make a reservation, check the National Park’s website
www.nps.gov to make sure your site will be open and have the amenities you need.
Getting There Without a Car
By train/bus: (There are two options)
1. Take the Amtrak from Santa Barbara to Yosemite Valley. It leaves once at 9am and takes 11hrs with two transfers. Tickets cost $135 round-trip.
2. Take the Amtrak to Merced. It's about 7hrs and costs $105 round-trip. Then take the Yarts Bus from Merced to Yosemite. It's a 3hr ride, costs $25 round-trip, and also includes the Park entrance fee.
Fly from Santa Barbara or Los Angeles to Merced and take the Yarts Bus to Yosemite. Once you're inside the park, there are free buses that can take you to different trailheads and locations.
Camping with Bears
Yosemite is home to many black bears. Although they have no interest in humans, they are interested in your food. To keep everyone safe (including the curious bears), there are food lockers at every campsite. All food and scented items (soap, toothpaste, chapstick) must be stored in these lockers when you are away from your campsite. If you are staying in a cabin, you must keep these items inside, and make sure doors and windows are closed. Whenever you are at the campsite and have food out, make sure it is within arms reach.
Buying and Selling:
Play it Again Sports and Craigslist are great places to find used equipment that you can sell back when you're done with it. Mountain Air Sports and REI are good places to buy new gear.
UCSB Rec Cen has some outdoor gear available for rent, gauchosplay.com
UCSB Excursion Club offers trips and gear for $60 a year to be a member, excursionclubucsb.org
GearUp, a local organization in Santa Barbara, offers outdoor gear rentals and workshops, www.gearup.io