Yosemite National Park sits one of the most popular national parks in the country with more than 3 million visitors just in 2021. National Park officials are continuing their pursuit to allow a better experience for visitors in the park, which includes facing the number 1 complaint – crowds, particularly at popular destinations like Half Dome, Tunnel View and Yosemite Falls.
To deal with their top complaint, a brand-new reservation system has been put in place that will limit entrances throughout the day into Yosemite. Prospective visitors will now need a permit to enter the park during peak hours until September 30. For more detailed information or to make your Yosemite reservation, go here.
Peak hours reservations are included for all visitors staying overnight in the park. This includes reservations for The Ahwahnee Hotel, Yosemite Valley Lodge, Curry Village, Wawona Hotel, Housekeeping Camp, and NPS-managed campgrounds. Peak hours reservations are also included for all visitors with wilderness and Half Dome permits and visitors entering the park via YARTS buses and on permitted commercial tours.
“A visit to Yosemite should be about enjoying the beautiful granite-lined landscape, not sitting in gridlock,” said Yosemite National Park Superintendent Cicely Muldoon. “Yosemite visitors deserve a high-quality experience in this magnificent place. Our goal with the peak hours system is to ease overcrowding during the busiest times this summer while still offering access for all.”
But even if you can’t secure a reservation, not all is lost. Visitors can enter the park without a reservation before 6 am or after 4 pm. Those visitors will be required to pay the park entrance fee. That pass is valid for three days outside of peak hours. It’s the only way around the reservation system.
After September 20, park entrance will go back to its normal “drive-up” method, but the reservation system will surely be a staple during the busy season in Yosemite for years to come. What do you think of Yosemite’s new reservation system?