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Crowds and Lodging questions for mid-April

Cc
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26 posts
Crowds and Lodging questions for mid-April
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We're planning to visit Yosemite in mid-April (Easter weekend), 2022. Our main interest is to see the valley, waterfalls and do some short hikes.

Due to budget and availability, our lodging options are limited to a heated tent cabin in Curry Village, or hotel in Oakhurst (we are coming from Socal). We prefer to have wifi and a private bathroom, which has us leaning towards Oakhurst, but how bad would the drive to the Valley be that weekend? We don't mind long daily drives per se (3-4hrs a day is ok) but we would reconsider if the drive via southgate has a lot of traffic jams or is prone to icy/dangerous conditions (ie are there guardrails/shoulder room on the twisty sections of the drive?).

I'm also curious about the peak traffic/parking times throughout the day. I know early morning is best but husband has a strong preference to start the day late, so I'm wondering about traffic patterns between 11a-sunset. Would there be less crowds if we drove in way later, say mid afternoon? Or would the valley be crowded until after sunset?

Also, if we stayed in Curry Village, how crowded would it be at that time of year? Should we expect long queues for food/hot showers/check-in?

6 replies to this topic
Washington State
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for Yosemite National Park
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92,625 posts
197 reviews
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1. Re: Crowds and Lodging questions for mid-April
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Can you do Yosemite View Lodge? But you should still get in the Park early. 11 am is usually a very very busy time

Oakhurst is 90 minutes with no traffic, longer with. It goes up to 6,000', so greater chance of icy roads and unpleasant precipitation. And the shoulder is slim in some places. After many roadside trees burned, the comfort of nearby trees was eliminated (slightly more anxiety producing for folks with a fear of falling ... me!)

Long Beach...
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11,944 posts
2. Re: Crowds and Lodging questions for mid-April
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I would also look at Yosemite Bug Hostel, they have a lot of room configurations. Or even Mariposa, it is a pretty drive along the river.

I haven’t been to Curry Village for Easter Weekend, but I have gone the week after. No lines for bathroom/shower. Food lines can get long, but I would try to eat during ‘off’ times. Bring a cooler with breakfast and lunch options. Maybe bbq or have a picnic lunch.

I would stay in Yosemite Valley and make it an adventure for the family.

Cc
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26 posts
3. Re: Crowds and Lodging questions for mid-April
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Thank you both for the advice! The scary twisty road was just enough to tip the balance away from Oakhurst. I looked into the lodging you guys recommended and found something at the Bug Rustic that fit our budget! So now we will debate a little more about Bug Rustic vs Curry Village...

Washington State
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for Yosemite National Park
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92,625 posts
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4. Re: Crowds and Lodging questions for mid-April
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Hi again

Wawona road is not scary or twisty.... it's just a usual mountain road with curves. Hwy 140 is a much gentler grade than Wawona Road. But it also has curves as it follows the Merced River. In mid April, you might see hillsides of poppies or blooming redbud trees. This is a pretty drive.

The Bug is about an hour from Yosemite Valley, without traffic. How many times do you want to drive this route? As you don't seem to care for traveling on mountain roads, staying in the Valley may be better for your travel style.

Seattle
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for Grand Canyon National Park
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5. Re: Crowds and Lodging questions for mid-April
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You need to consider the parking situation as well as the drive in. Late morning arrival can mean the parking areas are filled. You might find a spot along the road ( where parking is allowed) but that could mean a long walk to the main visitor area and shuttle stops ( if the valley shuttle is running). If you plan to enter the Valley in mid-afternoon in hopes of finding parking, how would you spend the rest of the day?

I realize that the Curry Village tent is not ideal for you, but weighed against the inconveniences of driving in and finding parking each day, might that make it more attractive? The location of Curry is pretty much ideal.

If that is just not an option, keep checking for cancellations at Yosemite Lodge.

Cc
Level Contributor
26 posts
6. Re: Crowds and Lodging questions for mid-April
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Thanks guys for the input! I think it'll come down to whether Curry Village amenities are likely to be very crowded/dirty. If they are, then that is a deal breaker and we'll just have to suck it up and do some mountain driving (we have done some twisty drives, it's just not our favorite especially if there's a lot of traffic on the road).

But if the Curry Village crowds aren't so bad in April then I can see how it would be so much nicer to be right there in the Valley!

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