We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The Tripadvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?

Zurich, Switzerland
Level Contributor
35 posts
18 reviews
20 helpful votes
Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

Have any of you been to Yosemite NP and the Sequoia and Kings canyon national park in mid-May? Is that a good time to visit (less people etc.) or is it still a bit too cold? We would like to visit the two parks as part of a round trip through California. For other parts of the planned trip, mid-May seems quite pleasant. Thanks for your feedback!

9 replies to this topic
Washington State
Destination Expert
for Yosemite National Park
Level Contributor
92,626 posts
197 reviews
169 helpful votes
1. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

Yes, many of us have been in Yosemite in all parts of May. Waterfalls are everywhere.

Mountain weather is variable. It could be snowing and chilly. It could rain. It could be quite warm and sunny

The Top Questions on the right side of the page, full TripAdvisor website, has tips to help you plan,. Lodging reservations will be the biggest challenge.

For info about jointly managed Sequoia / Kings Canyon NP, please check that forum. After the devastating fire, I don't know what things will be like in 2022. I know more about Yosemite as this is the Yosemite forum.

Redding, California
Level Contributor
1,816 posts
28 reviews
16 helpful votes
2. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

May is a good time to see the waterfalls full, so there are usually a lot of visitors in May. If you seek to avoid crowds, then you would likely be visiting at a time where there’s no/little flow at the falls. Seeing as you’re coming a great distance, I would recommend a May visit, but try to avoid being in the park on a weekend.

Fremont, California
Level Contributor
92,721 posts
8,650 reviews
4,070 helpful votes
3. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

it may or may not be.

If its a major snow fall year, they have evacuated the valley floor area due to flooding if the snow melts too quickly.

But in general, its a good time to visit for valley floor. Its generally not good for hiking in the higher elevations such as Toulumne Meadows.

If just want the valley floor, I'd say the risk is small.

Atlanta area
Level Contributor
1,296 posts
21 reviews
81 helpful votes
4. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

In mid-May your Yosemite visit would focus mainly on Yosemite Valley. Glacier Point Road and Tioga Rd generally don't open until mid-May at the earliest and sometimes later, and in 2022 Glacier Pt Rd won't be opened at all.

San Diego
Destination Expert
for San Diego
Level Contributor
73,929 posts
65 reviews
127 helpful votes
5. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

We loved our visit the 3rd week of May!

Just gorgeous!

Zurich, Switzerland
Level Contributor
35 posts
18 reviews
20 helpful votes
6. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

thanks a lot for your feedback so far! Maybe you can give me even some more advice what do do in May (and also what not to do)

Edited: 28 November 2021, 04:44
Washington State
Destination Expert
for Yosemite National Park
Level Contributor
92,626 posts
197 reviews
169 helpful votes
7. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

The Top Questions on the right side of the page, full TripAdvisor website, has tips to help you plan. Did you read those?

Also use the NPS website and YosemiteHikes.com

Lay out a draft itinerary that sounds good to you and we'll help to modify so it makes sense (one way roads, busy shuttles, etc)

Penn Valley...
Level Contributor
148 posts
12 reviews
6 helpful votes
8. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

5 1/2 years ago (May 9-13, 2016) we camped in Yosemite to celebrate my 70th birthday. It was my choice of places to go, and I got the campsite I hoped for. We spend 5 wonderful days there, and had my birthday dinner at the Ahwahnee to celebrate.

Fast forward 2 1/2 years and it was the DW's 70th BD. Her choice...2 weeks at Villa del Arco in Cabo San Lucas. I still don't which I enjoyed more ;-)

If you have any questions about what it can be like in 'mid-May', here is a link to a small album of pics from that trip: https://photos.app.goo.gl/c2JCwHvTSwCnxfqy2

Penn Valley...
Level Contributor
148 posts
12 reviews
6 helpful votes
9. Re: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Save

I made post #8 on my laptop, and then later tried to open the picture link on my phone and got an error message. It sill opens on my laptop though...weird. Here is another link just in case.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/c2JCwHvTSwCnxfqy2

Reply to: Yosemite NP: Is mid-May a good time for visit?
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted
© 2022 TripAdvisor LLC All rights reserved.

This is the version of our website addressed to speakers of English in Singapore. If you are a resident of another country or region, please select the appropriate version of Tripadvisor for your country or region in the drop-down menu.