Yosemite National Park officials made a major announcement that they will no longer require reservations for vehicle entrance during the summer season, beginning in 2023. The decision was lauded by many who felt the system excluded people from visiting the beauty of Yosemite.
The reservation system began in 2020 during the Covid pandemic in order to limit the number of people in the park for social distancing purposes. Then, the park kept the system in place in 2021 and 2022 to deal with major infrastructure repairs at popular destinations.
Now, officials will attempt to find a new way to distribute crowds in the popular park. An announcement will be made in December on how they will attempt to limit overcrowding at key areas.
“Yosemite has been grappling with congestion—even gridlock—for decades,” wrote park officials in a statement. “We want to build from the lessons learned from the last three summers of managed access.”
Permits and reservations have been a popular way for park officials to limit crowding in popular outdoor destinations, like Yosemite and Humboldt’s Fern Canyon, especially with a surge in visitation during Covid. Now, those systems may be finished for good.