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Short stay...thoughts?

Austin, Texas
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Short stay...thoughts?

We will be visiting for a little less than 2 days in early August. We are spending the night before in Sockton, then one night at Wawona Hotel, and then heading to Pleasanton at the end of the second day. This is what I have come up with so far:

Leave Stockton as early as possible on Wed. (my wife is not a morning person, so it probably won't be what you all would consider early). I thought we would then head to Glacier Point. Possibly picnic around Glacier Point. Then head down to the Mariposa Grove and hike at least the lower grove. As I said, we are staying at the Wawona, so we will just go to the hotel from there.

The next morning, we will get up (again as early as possible) and head to Yosemite Valley, making the various stops mentioned in the "What to See As You Drive Into the Valley" article. Then we would like at least one good hike and right now I am thinking either Mist Trail or Artist Point.

At the end of the day, we will head to Pleasanton.


If this is a good basic plan, is there time to do anything else the first day? Either a short hike off Glacier Point Road or the upper Mariposa? If so, what which/what would you recommend? Is there anywhere around Wawona for dinner, or should we buy enough food for another meal?

On the second day, do you recommend Mist Trail or Artist Point? Or a completely different hike? What would you recommend for meals?

By the way, this trip will just be my wife and myself. We are by no means expert hikers, but from the descriptions, I think we could handle most of the trails if we are only doing a limited number.

Redlands, California
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1. Re: Short stay...thoughts?

I haven't done Artist Point yet but you can get a similar view from the Tunnel View spot, so I would opt for the Mist Trail as a real Yosemite experience even though the fall (or falls) won't be too impressive. And just spend a little time wandering around Cook's Meadow by the river--great views of Half Dome and a chance to spot deer.

I would take some kind of picnic the second day too as you won't want to spend time hunting up lunch in Yosemite Valley, and anyway picnicking is much nicer.

I'm not sure about dining options in Wawona other than the hotel (which I gather is not cheap) but you could certainly do worse than having a casual dinner on the veranda by your room. I think there's a small grocery store in Wawona but I don't know the hours. I'm sure others will be able to help.

Oakland, California
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for Yosemite National Park
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2. Re: Short stay...thoughts?

It seems reasonable. Glad you found that Traveler Article!

I think on your first day, on the way in, you can take 140 into the park, turn right and head up 41, stop at the Tunnel View (a great first experience) and still have time to do the hike up Sentinel Dome on your way to Glacier Point. Of course, it will depend upon how soon you get to the park, but starting at Stockton you won't need much more than 2 hours or so to reach the gates of the park. So I would think either Sentinel or Taft Point, Glacier Point, some of the Mariposa Grove in the late afternoon, then Wawona would be possible, especially if you can be on the road by 8 am.

Washington State
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for Yosemite National Park
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3. Re: Short stay...thoughts?

The problem with Mariposa Grove during the day is that the parking lot fills early and most folks must take the shuttle from Wawona to the Grove parking lot. This could work okay for you, but you have to be done hiking/walking in the Grove in time to catch the last shuttle back to Wawona.

Option A: Park at the Wawona Hotel but don't check in. Walk down the path to the Wawona Store and catch the next shuttle up to Mariposa Grove. My guess (and it's only a guess ... based on vague reports from others) is that the last shuttle will leave around 5 or 5:30. Be on it, or walk the forested 4 + mile trail from Mariposa Grove directly to the Wawona Hotel. Then check in & have dinner at the Wawona Hotel.

Option B: Check in to the Hotel and either have an early dinner or grab your picnic dinner. Then drive yourselves up to the Grove after 5 pm. You'll get a place to park. Walk, wander, picnic, whatever. Drive 6 miles back to the Hotel.


One of my favorite hikes in the Park is Sentinel Dome. It's 2.2 miles round trip with a great pay-off ~ views from the top of the dome. The trailhead is about 2 miles before you reach the end of the Glacier Point Road.

I haven't hiked Artist Point so I won't weigh in on your Valley hiking day.

Meals? I always 'vote' for picnics. They're ready when you are, contain food you like, and don't involve standing in a line with other people!

I love your description of an early morning with your wife. Another recent visitor said their family just stayed on Central Time while they were in Yosemite. They were out of their lodging by 6 am Pacific Time every day. Do you think you could trick your wife that way? (Just kidding!)

4. Re: Short stay...thoughts?

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