Can You RV Camp In Yosemite

Are you looking for a place to capture the beauty of nature? Yosemite Valley in California is the perfect pick for an excellent outdoor experience.

Let yourself experience Yosemite’s dramatic waterfalls, massive sequoias, outstanding wildlife, and jaw-dropping cliffs.

Yosemite is perfect whether you’re seeking an adventure or want to engross yourself with nature. It is one of the peaceful places where you can connect with the world.

There are a lot of activities you can do while staying at the Yosemite National Park. You can go backpacking, camping, skiing, fishing, hiking, or rock climbing. You can also go horseback riding, ice skating, snowshoeing, rafting, and indulge yourself with ranger and nature programs.

Although there are activities to do, some wonder if it is possible to have an RV Camp in Yosemite. The answer is yes. You can RV Camp in Yosemite valley. 

However, some questions remain unanswered about RV Camping in Yosemite. Here are the answers to some questions that might be going on in your head.

Where to RV camp in Yosemite?

RV Camping is only allowed to their assigned campsites. That means that pulling over by the side of the road and parking overnight in parking lots is not permitted.

That means that you must stay in one of the official campsites if you want to stay overnight.

In Yosemite Valley, there are around ten camping sites or grounds. These camping grounds can accommodate trailers and RVs. It includes fifth wheels of varying lengths.

The following are the ten Yosemite Valley camping grounds:

  • North Pines Campground
  • Upper Pines Campground
  • Lower Pines Campground
  • Wawona Campground
  • Bridalveil Creek
  • Hodgdon Meadow Campground
  • Crane Flat
  • White Wolf
  • Tuolumne Meadows Campground
  •  Indian Flat RV Park

Above are the campgrounds people can choose from in RV camping in Yosemite Valley. Some of them are year-round locations. On the contrary, some of them are seasonal locations.

Best Places to RV Camp in Yosemite

There are ten campgrounds in Yosemite that are perfect for RV camping. Each camping sites have their uniqueness. Among ten campgrounds, there are three who stand out:

North Pines Campground

North Pines Campground has one of the most beautiful settings in Yosemite. With colossal pine trees, granite cliff walls, and a rushing river, it gives people a woodsy feeling.

The North Pines Campground is at the end of Yosemite Valley. North Pines is also close to some hiking trails which campers can explore.

Most of the 81 sites in North Pines are large and well-spaced. It is quiet and peaceful. It also provides campers privacy. The campground itself is very scenic, which will give you a safe space to connect with nature.

Upper Pines Campground

Upper Pines Campground is the largest among the three campgrounds in Yosemite Valley. It has 238 campsites. It is divided into several individual loops; that’s why it doesn’t feel like a big campground. Also, finding one’s way is more accessible.

Upper Pines has large pines and cedars that give people a mix of shade and sun—also located in the part where it provides a good view of valley walls. On the other hand, the campground is open that gives a minimal amount of privacy. Also, from the campground, there are some walking distance trailheads.

Upper Pines Campground is open year-round and reservable up to five months in advance.

Lower Pines Campground

Among the three campgrounds, Lowe Pines is the smallest one. It is a peaceful campground with a lot of deciduous and pine trees. There are sites located in the center, and it is open and exposed.  Some are built in the edges with more privacy because of trees.

One side of the campground is close to the river. That’s the reason behind the flooding every spring. Sometimes, this area is closed because of the flooding.

If ever that you reserve the site in May or June, there is a possibility that the authority may cancel the reservation. The campground is open from the last quarter of March to the beginning of November.

Is there free RV camping in Yosemite?

Yes, there are free RV camping sites in Yosemite, but these camping grounds don’t have services. That means that the campers will be responsible for their electricity, water supply, waste cleaning, and collection. 

However, these free campsites feature unique and ideal camping styles. Also, it still gives a Yosemite camping vibe.

Here is the list of free RV camping sites in Yosemite:

  • Glass Creek Campground
  • Redinger Campground
  • Sagehen Meadows Campground
  • Green Creek Road
  • Nelder Grove Campground
  • Lower Deadman Campground
  • Travertine Hot Springs Dispersed
  • Big Springs Campground
  • Glass Flow Road
  • Buttermilk Road
  • Pine Creek

The free RV Campgrounds give a lot of unique vibes and bond with nature. It is a real experience with nature as the camper is fully responsible for his/her stay at the camping site. It is essential to be accountable and respectful to nature while staying.

How much does it cost to RV camp in Yosemite?

There are times that some camping grounds are not open in some seasons. Prices also vary depending on the season and the day campers will rent an RV site. On the other hand, there are different kinds of RV sites that campers can rent. Below are the prices of different types of RV site that campers can rent:

  • Standard Pull-in or Back-in – The prices vary depending on the season and days. During the offseason, it starts at $30 to $42. Next, during midseason, it starts at $40 to $48. Lastly, on the season, the prices start at $44 to $56.
  • Riverside Pull-in or Back-in – The prices are different because of the seasons and days. In the offseason, the prices start at $35 to $47; but in midseason, the prices start at $45 to $53. During the season, the prices start at $49 to $55.
  • Deluxe Pull-in or Back-in –In the offseason, the prices start at $32 to $44. In midseason, the prices start at $43 to $51. During the season, the prices start at $47 to $59.
  • Premium Back-in – Just like the others, the prices increase because of the seasons. During the offseason, it starts at $40 to $46, but during midseason, the prices start at $50 to $56. During the season, the prices start at $52 to $64.
  • Deluxe Pull-Thru – This one is no different from others. The cost increases because of the seasons. During the offseason, the prices start at $34 to $46, but by midseason, the prices start at $44 to $52. During the season, the prices start at $48 to $60.
  • Premium Pull-Thru – This is the most expensive one. During the offseason, its prices start at $42 to $54, but in the midseason, the prices start at $52 to $60. When it’s the season, the prices start at $56 to $68.

Each RV site can fit 5 to 6 people. It is much better to be with your family or group of friends while RV camping. Since it’s a little expensive, the expenses can be divided if you’re with other people. You do not have to shoulder every cost if you bring a friend.

How to make reservations to RV Camp in Yosemite?

Yosemite RV Camping requires reservations before actually camping in Yosemite. It is on a first-come, first-served basis, and reservation starts five months before the actual date of camping. Yosemite RV Camping is in high demand, especially during summer.

There are a lot of people who are interested in exploring Yosemite. When the campsites open to the public, people will be lining up within minutes. That is why it is crucial to be up on your feet to get a reservation in Yosemite.

The campsite reservations become available 15th of every month. It should be the 15th day, five months before camping starts. That means reservations for September 15 to October 14 become available on June 15 annually.

You must set your clock correctly. The reservation starts at 7 AM PT, and reservations are quick to fill out. If you are only a few minutes late, there is a possibility that you can’t have a reservation at the campgrounds.

The process for reservations will be on recreation.gov. Visiting this website is recommended.

Final Thoughts

With what is happening right now, an escape from reality would be good. Reconnecting with nature is a needed thing to be able to forget our problems temporarily.

Getting a reservation may be challenging and a little expensive, but it is worth it. There are a lot of new things to experience in Yosemite Valley. Different campgrounds with unique attributes and differences. 

There are free campsites that will require you to bring all the necessities. On the other hand, there are paid grounds that can give the campers the things they needed during their stay.

Visiting Yosemite Valley is truly a long-awaited adventure.