There are numerous sandy spots to splash and swim along the Merced River as it meanders Yosemite Valley, making it a hotspot for some of the best swimming holes in Yosemite – and just outside the park as well! Since none of the indoor museums or visitor centers are open due to the pandemic, we focused on outdoor activities. It's a sure way to have a spectacular ride over the falls when a … Fishing regulations for Yosemite National Park follow those set by the state of California, including the requirement that people 16 or older have a valid California fishing license. Most of the trip, the river was only 1 to 3 feet deep. This hike is a great way to get a taste of the John Muir Trail, if you’ve never done the whole thru-hike. Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite National Park: "Are people allowed to swim in the lake? River and lake swimming is at-your-own-risk. River and lake swimming is at-your-own-risk. Overview. Cathedral Beach is one of the best spots to swim along the Merced River. In Yosemite Valley and El Portal (Happy Isles to Foresta Bridge): In the Tuolumne River from the O'Shaughnessy Dam downstream to Early Intake Diversion Dam. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The Grand Valley Since 1864. Fishing from bridges and docks is prohibited. These iconic scenes seem to appear and disappear with every bend. It’s a popular spot because of its accessibility – and who wouldn’t want to stop here on their way through? Although rockfalls are relatively uncommon, several rockfalls occur in Yosemite Valley each year; they are dangerous and can cause injury or death. There is a book, "Touring California and Nevada Hot Springs" by Matt C Bischoff, This book is the definitive guide to hot springs in this region. Fishing regulations for Yosemite National Park follow those set by the State of California, including the requirement that people 16 or older have a valid California fishing license.The season for stream and river fishing begins on the last Saturday in April and continues through November 15. Take a short walk from Yosemite Valley Lodge and you’ll be standing under the tallest waterfall in North America, dropping 2,425 feet. Lower Cathedral Lake is one of the most scenic spots you could pick to take a dip – the lake has an amazing view of Cathedral Peak. With the weather being warm to hot during the day and chilly at night, it is ideal for camping out among the granite and the stars. The park’s water is 100% safe to drink. Daredevils can jump off some of the rocks above into the icy water. The Lodge food court also serves lunch, you can hit up the Yosemite Village Grill, or the Meadow Grill in Curry Village (temporarily known as Half Dome Village). Bass Lake can be equally fun as a hub to your Yosemite adventures, as well as a vacation destination. Reviews. It’s also safe for bathing and swimming. Swimming in Mono Lake, California written by Sonja Faul Mono Lake is a hyper-saline lake in California, just outside Yosemite National Park. Water flow rates vary throughout the seasons in Yosemite and are different from year to year. Boating, kayaking, and rafting are allowed in the park. Mirror Lake is considered a stream and is only open during stream fishing season. It was 102° out, but the cold river water was wonderful. This trailhead is right off of the highway, and has a small parking lot area. At Tenaya Lake, just south of Tioga Road, you can swim, paddle or lounge in the sand … and see evidence of several years of donor-funded restoration work. From the parking lot, head back through the camp while keeping to your right. Rafting along the Merced River is popular during summer. The Lodge is to the west of the Yosemite Village area, close to Yosemite Falls. Besides the cold water, it is worth it. Hike and Swim at Mono Pass near Yosemite Valley, CA. FOOTWEAR FOR HIKING Lightweight running shoes. If you can stay for a weekend, try the Yosemite weekend getaway planner. The falls are pretty, always lots of people so don't go if you don't like crowds but always fun too. When you’re getting in for your swim, avoid rapids and rushing water and keep out of currents. These are the only places in the park where you can swim with a lifeguard on duty. Backpacking is also perfect in August, but does require a wilderness permit . Most people put in along the Merced River at Stoneman Bridge (near Curry Village) and take out at Sentinel Beach Picnic Area, under the following conditions: This section of river is open to boating and rafting each day when the gage height at Pohono Bridge is below 7 feet at 8 am. There are two major rivers that flow through Yosemite, the Tuolumne River and the Merced River. You’ll be able to see the river and the beach over to the side. River and lake swimming is at-your-own-risk. You may have seen the water crashing down from heights of over 2,000 feet at Yosemite Falls, or maybe you’ve done the iconic Mist Trail to Vernal and Nevada falls. You’ll need to bring your own though as there is nowhere to rent kayaks within the park. Oh my! It’s my life goal to go back for a longer trip and explore more of the park. While your faithful companion splashes around, you can spend time fishing or swimming yourself. The park has relaxing beaches, rivers, lakes and pools in a stunning natural setting you can access at your own risk. Keep in mind that a delayed opening will generally mean that higher elevation trails will continue to have snowpack through the late summer months and prepare accordingly. I too had difficulty finding out information on where I can shower while visiting Yosemite. What makes this Yosemite hike special? The California Department of Fish and Wildlife website lists current sport fishing license fees and regulations. Spring arrives, the sun emerges after rain and snow, waterfalls pick up, wildlife abounds. These high elevation lakes are a favorite spot for backpackers. If you’re looking for something a little more off-the-beaten-path, there are quite a few longer trails to alpine lakes in the high country of Yosemite. In above-average snow years, however, I have seen the opening be delayed through June. This pristine alpine lake is super easy to access. You can swim in this chilly alpine lake. For this old Indiana boy to stand on top of a mountain and look down at other mountaintops was a life-changing experience. Makes a great stop on the way to or from the park. Originally a valley like Yosemite, it was dammed and is now a reservoir for San Francisco. Something of a local treasure in the Provo area, Bridal Veil Falls is a picturesque double cascade waterfall fed by the Cascade Mountain. Is Yosemite water safe to drink? Kayaking is allowed in Yosemite. Swimming is allowed in Yosemite National Park. You may have noticed if you’ve visited the valley in late summer that Yosemite Falls is just trickling down the rocks, or has stopped altogether. An icon of America’s majestic natural beauty, California’s Yosemite National Park welcomes millions of visitors each year—drawn to its dramatic waterfalls, giant sequoias, abundant wildlife, and awe-inspiring cliffs, like Half Dome and El Capitan. Tenaya Lake. Hetch Hetchy Reservoir, and within one mile upstream along any tributary (e.g., Rancheria Falls). A former Yosemite National Park employee, she currently spends her time exploring the eastern Sierra Nevada. Others of us sometimes get needled by members of the first group. Save. Swimming is permitted in pretty much every body of water in the park, except Hetch Hetchy Reservoir and above waterfalls. While so much has changed for humans in recent weeks, it's reassuring to see that nature carries on as it always has," Yosemite National Park wrote. Your guide to outdoor adventure since 2019. Walk down until you reach a bridge across the river. You can also take advantage of the public swimming pools if you’d like to have a lifeguard on duty. It’s no wonder that it’s a favorite! There are some exceptions, however, where swimming is prohibited: Swimming in the Merced River is a popular way to cool off--but help protect the river by entering and exiting only on sandy beaches. Emerald Pool and Silver Apron (above Vernal Fall), Wawona Domestic Water Intake (and 100 yards upstream). There are some special regulations that apply within the park: Check to see where fishing supplies and licenses are available in Yosemite National Park. Probably the biggest benefit of visiting in the summer is that it offers the most activities and almost all the business in the area are open. Can You Swim At Yosemite? Beautiful video peeks into valley, without humans. During the summer months, Highway 120 through the park opens up, and with it comes access to many beautiful lakes. Yosemite National Park offers a range of swimming opportunities—from rivers and lakes to our family-friendly pools, which are the only swimming places in Yosemite with lifeguards. Yosemite National Park offers a range of swimming opportunities—from rivers and lakes to our family-friendly pools, which are the only swimming places in Yosemite with lifeguards. Nestled in the high country and surrounded by granite, it’s definitely a favorite for a quick, scenic swim. Can you drink the water? Walk past this sign and over to your left. There’s a great view of Yosemite Falls from this point, so don’t miss it! You can also cut through the gift shop, exiting through the back doors and taking a right. Maximum size limit of 12 inches in total length. Yosemite Ranch Bass Lake-Ranch-swim . Yosemite Falls Hike & Swimming at the Top (4K) (https://youtu.be/uWR-R5t482U), Vail's 10 Best Winter Activities For Families. Some trails in Yosemite can be steep and rocky and involve walking on granite slabs, which requires good footwear. Look for: Our experience tells us that it’s better to rely on stronger feet than fancy footwear. If you’re visiting Yosemite Valley, there are two swimming pools that are open for public use for a small fee. The season for stream and river fishing begins on the last Saturday in April and continues through November 15. 2 bathrooms. This website is where I share all our adventures along with tips and advice to help you get outdoors too! A bit of caution – The spray from the falls can be so powerful in the spring, it feels like you’ve gone swimming without ever getting in the water. Heavy snowpack means that the snowmelt will continue throughout the late summer, bringing high water levels to the rivers, streams and falls. We took the rubber raft trip down the slow July Merced, not too expensive, and a wonderful experience. Usually at least 80% of the rental rafts reserve the day before. Finding information on where to shower in Yosemite National Park can be difficult, especially if you are trying to look online in advance. I'm a big fan of Rainbow Pools just to the west of the park boundary on the way to Groveland. Half a mile or so past the upper/lower lake trail fork, you'll pass a "No wood fires permitted" sign. Along your route or close to it, you will see a plethora of picturesque backdrops, from giant jaw-dropping trees to truly inspiring waterfalls. The cold can make it impossible to react quickly or swim against a current. One of the best places to swim in Yosemite is Tenaya Lake, swaddled within the high divide between the Merced and Tuolumne basins and easily accessed off the Tioga Road. You can also swim in Merced River across from El Capitan. 3 nights minimum. Overview. Remember that even during the heat of the summer, alpine rivers and lakes can be surprisingly frigid. The pool is located to the side of the Pavilion. More experienced boaters with appropriate equipment have additional opportunities along the Merced and Tuolumne Rivers. As always, mosquitoes will be waiting just for you in wet environments in Yosemite. The Tuolumne river flows through the northern and eastern parts of the park including Tuolumne Meadows, and the Merced flows through the southern part and Yosemite Valley. There is a path on the edge of the campground. And there are places you cannot swim. The Giant Sequoias are not the tallest trees in the world but they are … You may have seen the These are a great option if you want to take a swim but the mountain waters are too cold for your taste, or if you have kids. Then, once you do - you want to come back over and over again. There are some exceptions, however, where swimming is prohibited: Hetch Hetchy Reservoir, and within one mile upstream along any tributary (e.g., Rancheria Falls). So I took 5 minutes to swim before exiting and nobody seemed to mind. Even if you come back for multiple seasons, you’ll experience the park in a new way every time. As the name suggests, the sunrises here are fantastic, too. The trail to the upper lake actually passes about a hundred meters east of the lake rather than going directly to it. The closest shuttle stop is number 13, but stop 14 and stop 20 put you a short walking distance away in the parking lot. 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