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Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

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San Diego...
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Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

Hello everyone!

I'm in the very initial stages of planning my vacation for this July. It'll be for myself, husband and 3 boys (10, 8, and 2). We're a pretty active family that loves to hike, camp, and do outdoorsy stuff in general. We've got 10 days to work with, and we're coming from San Diego.

We'd like to visit Mammoth Lakes. We figured since we have so much time, we can see other places too. Any ideas? Does it make sense to go to Kings Canyon first, then Mammoth Lakes? What's the best roundtrip itinerary without having to backtrack too much? Is there any way to fit a day trip or 1 night overnight trip to Yosemite? Or should I avoid it all together since it's so busy?

Also, if you have any suggestions on campsites, or possibly hotels in any of these areas, let me know! We'll probably break up the trip with half camping, half hotel.

Thanks!!!

San Diego...
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1. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

With 10 days you can make a very nice trip out of it. Since there is no road directly from Kings Canyon to Mammoth Lakes, I would do a loop trip that includes all of the places you mentioned. It could be something like this:

Day 1 - Drive from San Diego to Sequoia/Kings Canyon NP

Day 2, 3 - Sequoia/Kings Canyon NP

Day 4 - Drive from Sequoia/Kings Canyon NP to Yosemite NP

Day 5 - Yosemite NP

Day 6 - Drive from Yosemite NP to Mammoth Lakes

Day 7, 8 - Mammoth Lakes

Day 9 - Drive to Lone Pine

Day 10 - Drive to San Diego

That's just a general suggestion; you could adjust it depending on what you want to see and do.

Within Sequoia/Kings Canyon NP, you can stay in campgrounds or in lodging such as Wuksachi Lodge, Montecito Sequoia Lodge, Grant Grove Cabins, John Muir Lodge, Hume Lake Christian Camp or Cedar Grove Lodge. See the Sequoia/Kings Canyon forum for more help on that. tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g143050-i904-Sequo…

There are many choices for lodging in and around Yosemite and you can visit the Yosemite forum of this site for help with finding the right thing for you. For a family of 5, a cabin or house in Foresta might work well for you. tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g61000-i315-Yosemi…

There are a lot of choices for where to stay in Mammoth Lakes. Members here can help you with finding the right thing for you. Here is a page that lists activities for kids in the Mammoth Lakes area: visitmammoth.com/things-to-do/…

Here is a general travelogue of the eastern side of the Sierra region that you can look through to see if anything in that area interests you. travelswithbillandnancy.com/eastern_sierras.…

So Cal
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2. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

Much of Yosemite books up a year in advance, so lodging availabiltiy might determine your route. SeKi, too, to an extent - it's less popular, but there are far few rooms available. People do cancel things all the time - check all the websites every day - but at this point you're probably in a take-whatever-you-can-get position.

Mammoth will probably be easier: more rooms + summer isn't their high season.

Washington State
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3. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

Hi

There are some camping tips in the Top Questions on the Yosemite forum. All of the First Come First Served campgrounds should be open by July.

There are also some itinerary ideas in the Trip Reports (in the Top Q) and in the Trip Ideas.

Yosemite: tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g61000-i315

San Diego...
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4. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

Hi everyone... thanks for your input so far!!! I will look through your suggestions and see if I can make an itinerary out of it!

SunriseSanDiego - Your route looks promising - I'll have to see if I can get something booked around Yosemite since everything in Yosemite is already booked.

california
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5. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

You could also go to Mammoth first and spend a few days (camp at one of the lakes, or rent a condo). Lots to do around Mammoth- hiking, fun at the lakes, the public pool ( off Highway 395). Mono lake is a good spot for kids (morning or early evening is ideal, before it goes too hot) - be sure to stop at the county park which has a nice boardwalk to the lake, grass and shade, playground, toilets. From Mammoth, you can also make day trips to Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite NP. Your older kids might enjoy Bodie State Park, which would be a long day trip. June lake is also a good day trip. You could drive to the Yosemite Valley from Mammmoth and spend a couple of nights (provided you can find lodging and don't mind the summer crowds). From there, you could do Sequoia, or save that for another trip. When our kids were younger, we would spend a week in Mammoth, and always found plenty to do!

Lewiston, California
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6. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

Sunrise is spot on.

Washington State
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7. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

>>I'll have to see if I can get something booked around Yosemite since everything in Yosemite is already booked.<<

The first come first served campgrounds in Yosemite are not booked for July. They can't be booked.

8. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

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9. Re: Mammoth Lakes, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite - 10 day vacay!

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