Central Valley Lifestyle · Mariposa

Yosemite to reopen Thursday with reservations

Yosemite National Park is continuing along the path to fully reopen after being closed since March 20 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The park is opening on all primary attractions on Thursday and visitors will be able to access the park through multiple entrances.

Visitors will be able to access 800 miles of park trails and popular areas including Yosemite Valley, Glacier Point, Mariposa Grove, Tuolumne Meadows and Hetch Hetchy.

“There is no place like Yosemite, and we can’t wait to welcome visitors back,” said Acting Superintendent Cicely Muldoon in a press release. “It’s going to be a different kind of summer, and we will continue to work hand in hand with our gateway communities to protect community health and restore access to Yosemite National Park.”

Yosemite began the reopening process on June 5, allowing visitors who had wilderness permits or Half Dome permits.

With the temporary reservation system that is starting Thursday, Yosemite will offer 1,700 vehicle passes daily. Passes will be validated at the gate on the reservation date and can be used for seven days of entry.

People can make reservations through recreation.gov.

Not all visitors will be required to have a day use vehicle reservation. Those visitors excluded from the reservation requirement are anyone who has a camping or concession-operated lodging reservation, wilderness or Half Dome permit, vacation rental inside the park and anyone entering the park through the local transit system or with a tour from local businesses that have Commercial Use Authorizations.

Yosemite’s goal in the initial reopening phase is to allow about 50 percent of the average June Vehicle entry rate, and the park will monitor conditions daily and make adjustments as needed.

Overnight camping in Yosemite Valley and lodging provided by Yosemite Hospitality will be available starting Thursday.

Shuttle buses, High Sierra Camps and Housekeeping Camp will not be open in 2020.

Daniel Gligich is a reporter for The San Joaquin Valley Sun, focusing on Fresno State Athletics and the southern San Joaquin Valley. Email him at daniel.gligich@sjvsun.com.