Camping at Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park is spread across a vast region, but Yosemite Valley is the park’s most breathtaking feature. 

The most well-known attractions, such as Yosemite Falls, Half Dome, and El Capitan, are located in this relatively small park area and open yearly. 

It will cut your driving time in half if you can reserve a camp at one of the campgrounds nearby.

13 established campsites are available for Yosemite National Park camping.

Regarding camping sites, Yosemite National Park has some campgrounds, including Upper Pines, Wawona, Hodgdon Meadow and Camp 4, the famous rock climbers base, that are open year-round, while others are not. 

However, you can camp anywhere or hike within the wilderness, following all wilderness regulations. 

You must camp at the designated Yosemite campgrounds near five High Sierra Camps and the Little Yosemite Valley region.

Campgrounds are often fully booked from April through September; be sure to make your reservations as soon as possible.

Start reservation at www.recreation.gov or reserve by calling 877/444-6777. 

Seven of the 13 popular campgrounds in Yosemite are on a reservation system. 

Yosemite National Park camping grounds accommodate visitors on a first-come, first-served basis. 

They generally fill up by midday (sometimes sooner) from April through September.

To avoid the trouble of campground reservations, book a 3-Day Camping Adventure, which includes a guided tour and a 2-night stay at the park.

Yosemite Campgrounds 

Yosemite Campgrounds 
Image: Facebook.com(YosemiteNPS)

You can camp at numerous sites in Yosemite—front-country or backcountry campgrounds.

Front-country campgrounds offer easy access by car or RV, while access to backcountry campgrounds requires hiking with the necessary gear.  


Download the Yosemite National Park camping map and choose an ideal campground for your trip.  

Wawona, Hodgdon Meadow, and campgrounds in Yosemite Valley, including Upper Pines and Camp 4, are open year-round.  

Find the campground opening and closing dates for previous years.

Note: Due to the unique Horsetail Fall ‘Firefall’ event, you will need a reservation to visit Yosemite in February, and likewise, all campgrounds will require a reservation. 

Yosemite Valley

Yosemite Valley
Image: Britannica.com

The four designated campgrounds in Yosemite Valley are Upper Pine, North Pines, Lower Pines and Camp 4.

Upper Pine campground, near the Merced River, is easily accessible year-round, even without a car, via shuttle stop number 15. 

North Pines and Lower Pines campgrounds in Yosemite Valley open from around mid-April to mid-November. 

Nearby Curry Village and Yosemite Village offer convenient access to food and groceries.

These three campgrounds, with a daily fee of $36, are perfect for a family tent or RV camping night.

Camp 4, located near the base of granite cliffs, serves as an unofficial base for rock climbers. The per-person fee at the camp is $10.

Get more information on the Pine campgrounds and a map of Yosemite Valley campgrounds to better plan your trip.

South of Yosemite Valley

Wawona and Bridalveil Creek are two Yosemite National Park camping grounds in the southern part of Yosemite to try. 

Located along the South Fork Merced River, the Wawona campground is a short drive from the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias. 

Bridalveil Creek Campground is open from July to the end of September, with breathtaking views from Glacier Point at 7,200 feet (2,200 m) and minimal facilities nearby.

North of Yosemite Valley

  • Hodgdon Meadow

The Big Oak Flat Road’s Hodgdon Meadow is accessible all year round with a daily fee of $36.

At an elevation of 4,900 feet (1,219 m), this campground has flush facilities and seasonal staff. Yosemite Valley is about 45 minutes away.

  • Crane Flat 

A petrol station and a few basic conveniences are available at Crane Flat, which lies west of Crane Flat along Big Oak Flat Road.

The campsite, open from mid-June to mid-October, is well-situated for anyone wishing to visit the Merced and Tuolumne groves of giant sequoias.

The daily fee is $36.

  • Tamarack Flat

This campground is near Tamarack Creek and is usually open from late June to around mid-October with a daily fee of $24.

Situated off the Tioga Road just east of Crane Flat, this more primitive campground at an elevation of 6,300 feet (1,900 m) offers no running water.

  • White Wolf 

White Wolf campground, located at 8,000 feet (2,400 m) along the Tioga Road, is accessible from mid-June to early September.

The campsite offers seasonal portable water, staff, and cell phone reception, and you can also enjoy breakfast or dinner at the nearby White Wolf Lodge.

The per-day fee is $30.

  • Yosemite Creek 

At 7,700 feet, the Yosemite Creek campsite along the Tioga Road opens sometime in July and is open until early September (2,300 m)

The campsite is next to Yosemite Creek, the only water supply that needs to be purified, treated, or boiled before it can be consumed. 

With a daily fee of $24, it has no mobile coverage and no local tourist facilities.

  • Porcupine Flat

Porcupine Flat, near Porcupine Creek and Porcupine Creek Trailhead, is an hour from Yosemite Valley.

The campground opens around mid-July and closes around early October. 

It offers no running water, and you must filter, boil or treat water from the creek for cooking and drinking. 

The daily fee is $20.

  • Tuolumne Meadows 

The campsite provides great summer access to treks, lakes, and noteworthy overlooks at 8,000 feet (2,600 m) off the Tioga Road near Tuolumne River.

Yosemite’s largest campground will likely be shut down until 2024 or 2025 for substantial improvements.

Yosemite Camping in Winter

Yosemite Camping in Winter
Image: NPS.gov

Four Yosemite National Park camping grounds remain available in the winter: Upper Pines in Yosemite Valley, Camp 4 in Yosemite Valley, Hodgdon Meadows, about 45 minutes from Yosemite Valley and Wawona south of Yosemite Valley. 

You can try the seven-mile (11 km) one-way strenuous hike to Snow Creek Cabin and camp overnight with appropriate skills and knowledge.

Discover more about Yosemite camping cabins and other winter activities here.

RV Camping Yosemite

Nine Yosemite campgrounds can hold different-sized RVs and trailers, including fifth wheels. 

Yosemite National Park RV camping is allowed in Upper, Lower and North Pines in Yosemite Valley, with RV lengths of up to 35 feet, 40 feet and 40 feet, respectively. 

Other Yosemite National Park camping grounds that accommodate RVs include:

  • Wawona (upto 35 feet) 
  • Bridalveil Creek (upto 35 feet) 
  • Hodgdon Meadow (upto 35 feet) 
  • Crane Flat (upto 35 feet) 
  • White Wolf (upto 27 feet) 
  • Tuolumne Meadows (upto 35 feet) 

Campground Reservations

Yosemite Valley’s vehicle campgrounds require reservations year-round.

Yosemite National Park camping reservations are required in Hodgdon Meadow, Crane Flat, Wawona and part of Tuolumne Meadows from July through October.

You can make Yosemite camping reservations on the 15th of every month at 7 in the morning (Pacific time).

For Yosemite campgrounds, reservations are available in batches of one month at a time but up to five months in advance. 

Almost all campsites are booked immediately, within seconds or minutes after 7 am from May to September.

You can make the reservations online or call 877/444-6777. 

Call 877/833-6777 for TDD, and if you are calling from outside the US & Canada, use 518/885-3639. 

There is a maximum of two reservations per website or phone call, but you can make additional reservations by starting over or calling again. 

Tip: Ensure your clock is set correctly so you can begin the initial stages of the reservation procedure online before 7 am Pacific time and get the best chance of acquiring a reservation.

Check Yosemite tips for more tips to make the most of your visit to Yosemite. 

A few Yosemite camping options to try when you don’t have a reservation include

  • Tents at Camp 4 are on a first-come, first-served basis and are accessible any time of the year. However, it does not allow overnight vehicles, including RVs and trailers.
  • Hodgdon and Meadow Wawona are also open year-round.  

You can also search for cancellations in a campsite that takes bookings in or close to Yosemite on recreation.gov.

Camping Facilities in Yosemite 

Camping Facilities in Yosemite 
Image: NPS.gov

Group Yosemite campgrounds after a reservation are available at Wawona Campground year-round. 

While Hodgdon Meadow, Bridalveil Cree, and Tuolumne Meadows Campgrounds typically offer it during the summer only.

Horse campsites are accessible in the summer at Wawona, Bridalveil Creek and Tuolumne Meadows. However, you must make a reservation. 

You can use a generator but only between 7 am to 9 am, noon to 2 pm and 5 pm to 7 pm. 

Showers are only available at the Curry Village pool shower house. 

Vault toilets are present at campgrounds with stream water, as stated (not regular restrooms). All Yosemite campgrounds with tap water offer conventional facilities. 

Yosemite Camping does not offer electrical, water or sewer connections.

However, dump stations with fresh water are available at

  • Upper Pines Campground (all year)
  • Wawona Campground (summer only)
  • Tuolumne Meadows Campground (summer only)

Note: Tuolumne Meadows Campground is closed till 2024.

The best place to camp in Yosemite National Park is considered to be Lower Pines. North Yosemite Valley and Camp 4 are also good choices.

If you’re looking for free camping near Yosemite National Park, dispersed camping is the way to go. It does not require reservations and there are many good spots.

Some serene spots for camping near Yosemite National Park are 

  • Hardin Flat Road
  • Merced River Recreation Area
  • Summerdale Campground
  • Pine Mountain

Yosemite Camping Regulations

Here are some camping regulations in Yosemite you must adhere to while spending the night outdoors.

  • The camping limit in Yosemite National Park is 30 days in a calendar year. 

However, from May 1 to September 15, the camping limit is just 14 days, of which only seven can be spent in Yosemite Valley or Wawona.

  • Overnight Yosemite camping in an RV is only allowed in designated campgrounds. 

You cannot park an RV overnight by the side of the road or at any parking lot.

  • You can store food in hard-sided RVs and trailers with covered windows, doors and vents or when the food is out of sight. 

However, you cannot keep food in pop-ups, tent trailers, or other soft-sided campers. 

  • All established campgrounds allow pets, with the exception of Camp 4 and all group campsites. However, pets must be leashed and never left alone.
  • You must dispose of wastewater in specified utility drains. You must use Yosemite Valley, Wawona, and Tuolumne Meadows dump stations to discard sewage.
  • You can light campfires in Yosemite Valley only between the hours of 5 pm and 10 pm from May through October. But the rules might vary based on the valley’s moisture content
  • You must not harvest fuel from pine cones and needles; you can buy firewood from stores close to the campsites.

Yosemite Glamping

Yosemite Glamping
Image: Facebook.com(YosemiteNPS)

Glamping is a word that means ‘glorious camping’. It is the new way of camping outdoors. 

Glamping is when you camp outdoors but still enjoy the luxuries and facilities you would at home or a hotel.

This experience is a hybrid between conventional camping outdoors, where you can do without most appliances, and the vacation, where you avail amenities and enjoy the coziness.

Glamping is a way of connecting with nature without experiencing some of the hardships of camping.

Glamping in Yosemite will mean that you take in the beautiful nature while still having the comforts of a top-quality hotel.

Some appealing spots for a glamping experience in Yosemite are

  • Autocamp Yosemite
  • High Sierra Camps
  • Tenaya Lodge Explorer Cabins
  • Yosemite Bug Rustic Mountain Resort
  • Bridgeport Reservoir Campground
  • Hudson and Wendy’s Land
  • Groovy Moon Ranch


Can you camp in Yosemite National Park?

Yes. Camping is possible in Yosemite National Park. 
There are 13 major campgrounds where you can make a reservation between April and October.

How far is the fish camp from Yosemite National Park?

When it comes to Fish Camp, Yosemite National Park is pretty close to it. 
If you are near the South Gate of Yosemite, it is just a few miles away.

Where to camp near Yosemite National Park?

There are many Yosemite National Park camping areas available. Wawona, Yosemite Valley, Bridalveil Creek, and Crane Flat are some of the campgrounds.
There are also campgrounds at Little Yosemite Valley and High Sierra Camps that do not require reservation but you do need a wilderness permit to stay there.

How much is it to camp at Yosemite National Park?

It can cost from $10 to $30 for camping per night. Yosemite camping for groups can cost you up to $50. 
Bringing in a car costs $35, while for a motorcycle, the cost is $30.  

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