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What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

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San Francisco...
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What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

My boyfriend and I will be camping at Wawona at the end of July.

We've only been to Yosemite in a big tour bus.

We will be driving from San Francisco.

He is worried that if we park on the packed dirt that somehow a front wheel drive car with a small engine(like a Honda Civic) will get stuck.

We are also planning to drive up to Glacier Point.

Do we need a rear/all wheel drive car? Or an SUV or truck?

He's a mechanic, so I just think he likes big cars =D

San Francisco Bay
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1. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

Ha ha, a regular car is just fine in the summer. It's a lot more drivable than he's hoping for. The only time I would take an all wheel drive or four wheel drive there for the road conditions would be if it were snowing.

Washington State
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for Yosemite National Park
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2. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

Any car will be just fine. I drove a compact car once and it had a little trouble with some of the hills on Hwy 140, but that meant that I got there about 2 minutes later than if I'd had a car with a more powerful engine. (But I probably would have needed to stop for more gasoline for the powerful car!)

I wonder where your boyfriend thinks he'll encounter packed dirt. Maybe the Sentinel Dome shortcut turn out? Everyplace else is paved, even the campsite parking pad.

Santa Fe, New Mexico
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for Santa Fe, Mesa Verde National Park, Boulder, New Mexico
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3. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

Front wheel drive cars actually are better on dirt, gravel or snow than rear wheel.

LA
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4. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

You are not going to get stuck on the campground roads. A Honda Civic will be just fine.

I saw lots of Prius' in Yosemite last week.

Long Barn...
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5. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

Some of the hills in San Francisco are steeper than the hills in Yosemite. If it moves....you are good.

San Francisco...
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6. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

The camp parking at Wawona looks like packed dirt in pictures, or some people drove onto camp grounds. Is there an actual parking lot?

Washington State
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7. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

The road through the campground is paved. Some campsites have paved parking for the specific site and some are dirt or gravel. But absolutely any car can park and then "go" on a dirt road.

There is a photo of the campsite you reserved on the reservation website. There are other campsite photos here:

yosemitecampsites.com/wawona/#.U6LcEPldXJg (These photos show more of each campsite and less of the parking for the campsite.)

San Jose, California
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8. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

Yes, any kind of car is fine. This is a national park, not a remote wilderness. Any dirt areas that you can drive on will be well maintained and can be driven on by any car. I have a Mazda3, which is the car we always take to Yosemite - 4-cyl, 2.4l engine, fairly low clearance - totally fine.

If your boyfriend wants to get a bigger car, then go for it, but just know that it isn't necessary.

Oregon Coast
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for Crescent City, Oregon Coast, Oregon, Redwood National Park
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9. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

Oh my, camping in Yosemite? You're going to have to drive this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-jzY3gDgIY

LOL, of course I'm kidding but your boyfriend might like the video ;-)

Santa Clara...
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10. Re: What type of car to drive to Yosemite?

LOL h-Brit!! I saw that thing on "Extreme RV." Price tag $750K - 2 million depending on customization.

OP - any car is fine. We see all kinds of small sedans when we go camping. We take our pickup truck with a camper shell to sleep. But we used to go all over the state in my sedan too. Have fun. Hope you see more than you did with the big tour bus.