4 Camping Locations in Yosemite In 2023

Yosemite National Park spans a vast area, but Yosemite Valley is the park’s most magnificent component for camping in Yosemite.

Yosemite Falls, Half Dome, and El Capitan are among the most well-known sights in this relatively small section of the park, which is open all year.

If you can get a campsite at one of the area’s campsites, you’ll be able to save a lot of time driving.

Lower Pines, Upper Pines, and North Pines are three fantastic campgrounds at the far end of the valley, near Curry Village (previously Half Dome Village) and not far from Yosemite Village. All of these camps are next to each other.


GuideCamping In Yosemite
CampgroundsNorth Pines Campground, and more
Best places to visitEl Capitan, and more
Things to bringTorch, tent, etc.

Camping In Yosemite

1. North Pines Campground

North Pines Campground
North Pines Campground

The North Pines Campground offers a magnificent environment, a terrific location, and a woodsy ambiance among towering pines, granite cliff walls, and a flowing river.

You may walk immediately from this campground to various local hiking trails, which are near Curry Village at the extreme end of the Yosemite Valley.

It is normally peaceful, and many sites give seclusion, with just 81 sites, the most of which are spacious and well-spaced.

The views from the banks of the river are breathtaking. Tents, RVs up to 40 feet long, and trailers up to 35 feet long are all permitted.

This campsite is open from April until early November. You can make reservations up to five months in advance, and you get the sites that you made reservations within batches on the 15th of each month.

Address: Yosemite National Park, 9024 Southside Dr, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389

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2. Upper Pines Campground

Upper Pines Campground
Upper Pines Campground

The Upper Pines is the biggest campground out of the three campgrounds in Yosemite Valley, with 238 campsites.

This campsite has a lot of smaller loops, so it doesn’t feel like a large one, and getting about is simple. Shade and sun are provided by clumps of giant pines and cedars, with views of the surrounding valley walls in between.

The majority of websites are fairly public and provide minimal privacy. From here, you may easily stroll to the start of multiple trailheads.

The sites are smaller than those at North Pines Campground, and RV and trailer lengths are limited to 35 feet and 24 feet, respectively.

The campsite is open all year. Sites are reserved up to five months in advance, just as in North Pines.


3. Lower Pines Campground

Lower Pines Campground
Lower Pines Campground

The Lower Pines is the tiniest of the three Curry Village campsites. This is a really lovely campground with views in all directions, with a mix of pines and deciduous trees.

The locations in the middle are more open and exposed, while the spots on the periphery are more secluded and well-treed.

The campsite is prone to flooding in the spring, and sites in this region are occasionally closed due to flooding.

If you make a reservation along this side in May or June during a year when the river is high, there is a chance that your reservation will get canceled, leaving you scrambling for a place to stay at the last minute. There are 60 campsites in this campground.

Address: 9000 Southside Dr, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389

4. Camp 4

Camp 4
Camp 4

Climbers consider Camp 4 to be legendary. Like Royal Robbins and Warren Harding, famous climbers camped out here throughout the climbing season in the 1960s and 1970s.

This specific campground’s history is so significant in the history of rock climbing that it is on the National Register of Historic Places.

This campsite is very intimately linked to the climbing community today. This campsite, located in the center of the Yosemite Valley near Yosemite Falls, has its own distinct ambiance that isn’t for everyone.

The 35 tent sites beneath massive pine trees are entirely walk-in only from the nearby parking lot and shared, with six individuals assigned to each campsite.

Address: Wawona, California 95389


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Everything You Need To Know About Camping At Yosemite

Best Places To Visit Near Yosemite

Best Places To Visit Near Yosemite
Best Places To Visit Near Yosemite

Half Dome

Half Dome is one of the best places to see in Yosemite, and climbers especially know this famous site because many regard it here as the “big climb.”

This granite emblem appears to be quite different depending on where you look at it from. If you go up the valley and look at it from there, the real size of the rock’s face becomes more clear, and it’s easy to see why climbers feel drawn here.

Half Dome is in the distance from Tunnel View, but Glacier Point is the finest site to observe it.

From here, you can see how the rock towers over the valley and how much taller it is than the surrounding mountains.

The dome form is obvious, and you can see why its name is Half Dome.

El Capitan

The El Capitan is a sheer granite wall that is a famous climber location with a 3,000-foot elevation.

El Capitan is on the north side of Yosemite Valley. It is 1,000 feet taller than Half Dome, even though it looks like the opposite.

Alex Honnold climbed the wall by himself in June 2017, and it raised curiosity like the Academy Award-winning documentary Free Solo.

He became the first person to go to the top of El Capitan without using any assistance like rope.

The climb took about three hours and 56 minutes. You can see the El Capitan from the Tunnel View looking like a gigantic cliff on the left side of the valley.


Checklist Before Camping In Yosemite

The list here is a wide list of the sorts of wilderness equipment that you should consider bringing.

You may wish to add or remove items from the list depending on the length of your trip.

For example, if you’re going in fall or winter, you might want to bring extra cold-weather apparel or storm gear.

  • Map & compass
  • Trash bag
  • Sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Food and water
  • Storm gear
  • Headlamp/flashlight (with extra batteries)
  • First-aid kit
  • Firestarter
  • Matches
  • Knife

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Do I have to make reservations in advance for camping in Yosemite?

For most of the parks, yes, because most of the time, they are already booked months in advance during camping season.

Are there first-come, first-serve basis campgrounds in Yosemite?

You can always go there and try to pick up a place, but this is impossible as they are booked in advance.

Do I have to be careful when camping in Yosemite?

Yosemite is a rather safe area but be careful not to go too into the wild as there are many different animals.

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  1. https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/campgrounds.htm[]
  2. https://www.sftourismtips.com/things-to-do-near-yosemite.html[]

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