Yosemite Day-Use Reservations

Yosemite National Park is open. A temporary reservation will be required to enter beginning May 21.

Yosemite National Park is open for visitation without the need of a day-use reservation or in-park overnight lodging reservation. Just simply arrive at the gate, pay the entrance fee and enjoy Yosemite National Park in all of its beauty. Beginning May 21, a temporary day-use reservation system will be in place for any visitors without an in-park overnight lodging reservation to enter Yosemite.

Day-use reservations will be required for all users, including annual and lifetime pass-holders. Each reservation is valid for three days. Reservations can be acquired on Recreation.gov.

Reservations are available on www.recreation.gov beginning at 8 a.m. on April 21, 2021. Each day-use reservation is valid for one vehicle and the occupants of that vehicle. For more detailed information, please visit: https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/covid19.htm

Day-use 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, NPS-managed campgrounds and in-park vacation rentals in Wawona, Foresta and Yosemite West. Day-use 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.

The reservation system will be in effect through September 30, 2021.

 

Here is everything you need to know about the new temporary reservation system:

Do I need a reservation to visit Yosemite?

If you are driving a vehicle into Yosemite National Park, you must pay the park entrance fee and have one of the following:

  • A pre-purchased Day–use reservation from recreation.gov (valid for three consecutive days for unlimited re-entries)
  • Upper Pines, Lower Pines, or North Pines Campgrounds, Camp 4, Wawona Campground, Bridalveil Creek Campground, or Tuolumne Meadows Campground reservation
  • Curry Village, Housekeeping Camp, Yosemite Valley Lodge, The Ahwahnee, or the Wawona Hotel reservation
  • Private lodging or vacation rental reservation in Wawona, Yosemite West, or Foresta
    (Reservations for lodging or vacation rentals outside the park and in communities other than these three do not provide access to Yosemite.)
  • Yosemite wilderness permit
  • Yosemite Half Dome permit
  • Commercial use authorization

Upon showing proof of your reservation and a matching photo ID at the entrance station, you will receive a vehicle permit to enter the park. This permit is valid for three consecutive days for unlimited re-entries. For those with overnight reservations, the permit is valid for the duration of the reservation or three days, whichever is longer.

If you enter the park via YARTS (Yosemite Area Regional Transportation System) buses, bicycle, on foot, or on horseback, you do not need a day-use reservation to enter the park. Park entrance fees still apply.

Credit cards are the only form of payment accepted for entrance fees.

I have an annual or lifetime pass that gives me free entrance. Do I need a reservation?

Yes. These passes cover the park entrance fee, but you still need a reservation if driving into Yosemite. If you have an annual or lifetime pass and are getting a day-use reservation, be sure to specify that once your reservation is in the shopping cart.

How and when do I get a day-use reservation to visit Yosemite?

Day-use reservations are only available via recreation.gov. Reservations will go extremely quickly; be sure to have an account, be logged in, and ready to get a reservation promptly at 8 am Pacific time. If you have an annual or lifetime pass, be sure to specify that once your reservation is in the shopping cart.

Beginning at 8 am Pacific Time on the following dates, most reservations will be available for the summer on recreation.gov:

First day to reserve Arrival date
April 21 May 21 - June 30
April 28 July 1-31
May 5 August 1-31
May 12 September 1-30
  May 14 - September 23     Seven days advance  


Starting on May 14, some additional reservations will be available every day at 8 am Pacific time seven days in advance of the arrival date (e.g., make a reservation for an arrival date of September 30 on September 23).

Each user can make one reservation per arrival date. An occupant of the arriving vehicle must have the user (with photo ID) who made the reservation. The reservation is then valid for three consecutive days (including arrival date).

NPS changed the reservation windows based on public input, in order to better accommodate people with existing lodging or camping reservations outside the park and to allow people to plan more than a few days in advance.

On recreation.gov what does it mean that reservations are not yet released?

If you try to find availability on recreation.gov and it says reservations are not yet released, it means no more reservations are available until seven days in advance, promptly at 8 am PDT.

How much does a day-use reservation cost?

This cost is included in the park entrance fee. If you are an existing pass-holder (i.e., you have a Yosemite Annual Pass, America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Annual Pass, Every Kid Outdoors Annual Pass, Annual Pass for US Military, Access Pass, or Senior Pass), the non-refundable reservation fee is $2.

If you cancel a day-use reservation ($35), you will receive a $33 refund ($2 of the fee is non-refundable).

You need one reservation per vehicle and the reservation is valid for everyone inside the vehicle.

How long is my permit valid?

Your vehicle permit is valid for three consecutive days. If you have a reservation for in-park lodging or camping, a Half Dome permit, or a wilderness permit, your vehicle permit is valid for the duration of your reservation (or three days, whichever is more).

Why is the pass valid for three days instead of seven days?

In response to public feedback, NPS is temporarily shortening the period a pass is valid in order to increase the number of reservations available. The three-day pass allows us to offer an additional 950–1,850 day-use reservations each week to accomplish a similar level of visitation compared to our traditional seven-day pass. On average, almost 90% of visitors not staying overnight inside the park visit for three or fewer consecutive days. The three-day permit also allows reservation holders to enter the park on any day during their reservation (with the seven-day permit in 2020, reservation holders were required to arrive on the first day).

I have a reservation inside the park that is longer than three days. Do I need to pay the entrance fee twice?

If you have a reservation for one of the following, your entrance fee will be valid for the duration of your reservation or three days, whichever is longer:

  • Upper Pines, Lower Pines, or North Pines Campgrounds, Camp 4, Wawona Campground, Bridalveil Creek Campground, or Tuolumne Meadows Campground
  • Curry Village, Housekeeping Camp, Yosemite Valley Lodge, The Ahwahnee, or the Wawona Hotel
  • Private lodging or vacation rental in Wawona, Yosemite West, or Foresta
  • Yosemite wilderness permit

Do I have to arrive on the first day of my day-use reservation?

No. One of the benefits of changing to a three-day reservation is that you don't have to arrive on the first day of your reservation. Day-use reservations are valid from 5 am to 11 pm each day. Day-use reservation holders may not be in the park between 11 pm and 5 am (overnight).

What if my group is arriving in more than one vehicle?

A day-use reservation is required for each vehicle (or motorcycle) that enters the park. The person whose name is on the reservation must be in the vehicle with a valid photo ID.

Groups with lodging or camping reservations, wilderness permits, and Half Dome permits may arrive in more than one vehicle. An occupant in each vehicle must provide a copy or photo of the driver's license belonging to the person who made the reservation (as well as a copy of the reservation) to be permitted to enter.

Do I need a reservation to enter the park if I have a reservation for a campground or lodging accommodation located outside of Yosemite National Park?

Yes. You must have a day-use reservation to drive a personal vehicle into the park.

Are same-day reservations available? Can I wait at the entrance station and enter the park if people with reservations don't show up?

No. Reservations are not available at entrance stations. You can check recreation.gov before you arrive at the park to see if any cancellations have become available.

Do I need a day-use reservation if I am just driving through the park?

You can drive through the park to reach a destination on the other side of the park without a reservation. The entrance station ranger will provide a time-stamped permit valid for the time needed to travel from entrance to entrance. You must drive the most direct route to exit the park; stopping is prohibited. Violating park regulations can result in a fine of up to $5,000 and/or six months in jail.

The park entrance fee still applies and provides access to visit Hetch Hetchy during open hours.

Can I enter the park overnight?

It depends on the type of permit you have. A day-use permit allows you to be in the park between 5 am and 11 pm. If you have a lodging or camping reservation inside the park or a wilderness permit, you may enter the park 24 hours per day while your permit is valid.

If the entrance station is not staffed when you enter, you must complete a self-certification card at the entrance station and display it in your windshield. You must also be in possession of a valid in-park reservation or permit.

Entering the park without a permit or valid self-certification card is a violation of federal regulations, with maximum penalties of a $5,000 fine and/or up to six months in jail. Rangers are on patrol when entrance stations are unstaffed.

Why is the National Park Service limiting vehicle access to Yosemite?

The COVID-19 pandemic will continue to affect park operations in 2021. Visitation to the park will be managed in accordance with recommendations from public health officials, and in line with the California Blueprint for a Safer Economy's Color-Tiered System. The purpose of following the tiered system is to be responsive to changing conditions, protect public and employee health, and sustain park operations.

The day-use reservations only limits the number of vehicles; it does not limit the number of people.

How much is the park limiting vehicle access to Yosemite under the day-use reservation system?

The park is limiting vehicles based on a percentage of June 2019 visitation. The percentage is based on public health conditions using California's color-tiered system:

  • Yellow (minimal) tier: 80% (5,760 vehicles per day)
  • Orange (moderate) tier: 70% (5,040 vehicles per day)
  • Red (substantial) tier: 60% (4,320 vehicles per day)
  • Purple (widespread) tier: 50% (3,600 vehicles per day)

The day-use reservation system has been designed to be flexible and adaptive to conditions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

How does the number of day-use reservations compare to 2020?

The reservation system is based on the number of vehicles entering Yosemite. Overall, more vehicles will be allowed in the park compared to 2020 if the park is in the red or better tier. The opening of more lodging and camping facilities inside the park means more vehicles entering the park will be staying overnight inside the park, making fewer day-use reservations available at the more restrictive tiers.

How long will the day-use reservation system be in place?

This system is a temporary system to address public health concerns resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. The park is currently planning to operate this system through September 2021 and will re-evaluate the need for the system based on public health guidance. The day-use vehicle reservation system will no longer be used when the park resumes regular operations.

This day-use reservation and permit system is not part of an implementation of the Merced River Plan or Tuolumne River Plan.

Can I give or sell my reservation or permit to someone else?

No. Entrance passes and day-use reservations are non-transferable. Day-use reservations are only valid for the person who made the reservation and that person's vehicle.

How can I provide comments about this system?

You may always contact the National Park Service on their website. The superintendent's office receives all comments about the day-use reservation system.

 

What is visiting Yosemite National Park like?

Do I need to wear a mask in Yosemite?

Yes, masks are mandated on all federal property in the United States.

Many services in Yosemite remain open.

Click here for a list of services including hours of operation

Yosemite Hospitality and the National Park Service are committed to creating a safe, enjoyable experience during your visit. Some services and operations have been modified and adjusted to protect against COVID-19.

Hotels, dining, and retail are open and day-use reservations are not required to enter Yosemite National Park. Please recreate responsibly in Yosemite National Park and Mariposa County.

What is open in Yosemite?

  • Hotels: The Ahwahnee, Curry Village and Yosemite Valley Lodge have reopened.
  • Restaurants: Degnan's Kitchen, Base Camp Eatery, Mountain Room Lounge, The Ahwahnee Dining Room and The Ahwahnee Bar, and dining at Curry Village have reopened.
  • Retail: is open indoors at 50% capacity.
  • Campgrounds: A portion of Upper Pines Campground is open. No first-come, first-served camping is open.
  • Hiking: All trails are open except for normal winter closures on portions of the Mist, John Muir, and Four Mile Trails.

What is closed in Yosemite?

  • Mariposa Grove (due to storm damage)
  • Bridalveil Fall area (this area is closed due to scheduled project work)
  • Tioga Pass (winter closure)
  • Glacier Point Road (winter closure)
  • The High Sierra Camps
  • White Wolf Lodge
  • Tuolumne Meadows Lodge

Yosemite Valley is open. However, some lodging facilities and services are reduced. A visitor information desk and limited Yosemite Conservancy bookstore sales are available outside the Valley Visitor Center. The theater (including park films) and Yosemite Museum are closed, however, the Indian Cultural Village is open. Yosemite Valley Lodge, Curry Village and The Ahwahnee are open.

Camp 4, Curry Village, Housekeeping Camp, the Mountain Room Restaurant (Yosemite Valley Lodge), Degnan's Loft (Yosemite Village), Happy Isles Art & Nature Center are among facilities that are temporarily closed.

There is no shuttle service in Yosemite Valley. Please consider walking or cycling to reduce vehicle use when possible.

In the Crane Flat region of Yosemite, the Merced and Tuolumne Groves of Giant Sequoias, as well as the Crane Flat Gas Station, are open. Crane Flat Store is closed.

Hetch-Hetchy is open without the need of a day-use reservation. Hetch Hetchy Road is only open from 8 am to 5 pm. Day-use visitors must exit the area prior to 5 p.m.

What camping is available in Yosemite National Park?

The following campgrounds will be open in Yosemite for the 2021 season.

  • Upper Pines (all year)
  • Lower Pines (April 19–October 25)
  • North Pines (April 15–November 1)
  • Camp 4 (spring opening date to be determined)
  • Wawona (June 15–October 25) for RVs/trailers with toilets (no restrooms available)
  • Bridalveil Creek (July 15–September 6)
  • Tuolumne Meadows Campground (July 15–September 20)

Is Housekeeping Camp open?

Housekeeping Camp will open on April 23 at 50% capacity.

Are shuttle buses running?

Shuttle buses are not currently operating in Yosemite National Park. Please consider walking or cycling to reduce vehicle use when possible.

Are Guide Services available in Yosemite?

Yes! Click here, to view tour services that operate in Yosemite National Park. Yosemite Mountaineering School will reopen on May 21.

Take Safety Seriously on Trails

On trails and trailheads, please be respectful of the hikers around you by leaving as much space between each other as possible. If staying 6 feet away isn't possible, wear a cloth face covering.

Outside the park, the trails are typically so quiet there is less worry about contacting other groups of people. Although it is still important to be respectful, you'll find plenty of space to stretch your legs without encountering many others. To find hiking outside of Yosemite, visit Yosemite.com and sort by region.

 

Recreate Responsibly

As always, please recreate responsibly to help keep Yosemite National Park and Mariposa County open without restrictions. Please safely enjoy the park by following guidelines for travel during the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • Wear a facemask wherever needed or required.
  • Wash your hands and use hand sanitizer regularly.
  • Be prepared. Bring food, water, warm clothes, carry tire chains and fill your gas tank before entering the park. Always follow strict requirements for proper food storage to keep animals as well as humans safe.
  • Do not put yourself at risk when visiting the Park, so that first responders do not have to put themselves at risk helping you.

Please follow these #RecreateResponsibly tips:

  • Adopt social distancing practices and stay at least 6 feet from people outside your household unit
  • Wear a face covering, they're required.
  • Stay on the trail, for your safety and the safety of others
  • Stay within your limits. Yosemite is a great place to find outdoor adventure, but please don't push yourself beyond your physical limits.