A lot depends on the season you are traveling. In the winter and early spring, Tioga Pass Road on the east side of the park is closed by snow (open around end of May or early June) so you have to take the long way.
The long way is out Hwy 41 to Fresno, then down to bakersfield and east. This is nowhere near as scenic as the Tioga Pass and 395 route, but it's the most direct way this time of the year.
Either way, it is a long drive for one day and you should try to make at least one stop, to make the trip more relaxing and to see more. Especially if you can take Tioga Pass and go down along the east side of the Sierra Nevada and through Death Valley, don't rush because you will miss a lot.
Once we know when you are traveling, we can give you more details.
we went in the opposite direction near the end of June going through Death valley but stopped off at Mammoth for a night. It is a long journey for one day but can be done even stopping for a bite to eat .
One way isn't all that much faster than the other, about 7.5 hours +/-
Scenic, absolutley Tioga Pass!
Sorry forgot to tell you. We will reach yosemite via San francisco on 16th april and wil leave for Las Vegas on 18th april.
Pls suggest the best routes (with total time it will take and stops for lunch etc)
a) San Francisco to Yosemite
b) Yosemite to Las Vegas
The car that we will take has a GPS. Can I go to mapquest.com and get the routes ????
Many thnks in advance
We're thinking about doing the same trip in September, san fran->yosemite->vegas.
Did you ever find out how long it takes?
Thanks in advance!
In April Tioga Pass will not be an option (winter closure) Tioga Pass is open in September.
And if we take tioga pass, it's still almost 8 hours?
To reiterate, in April - the Tioga Pass is not an option. You have to go back down to Fresno and on to Bakersfield. There's a cut off road from Bakersield to the I15 that shortens your trip a bit.
The date the road closes in fall depends on the first big snowfall.
It is sometimes still closed through May or even early June, as we found out in 2007.
And yes, it's still almost 8 hours over Tioga Pass.
First, the first part of Tioga Road has strict speed limits (almost all of it does, actually), usually 45 mph. Then, it's a bit curvy in places. The 395 is not a freeway - it is 60mph most of the way, but you have to slow down for each town (they do all have traffic cops whose only job is to nab speeders).
Once you get to I-15, though, everyone is going at least 75mph.
The plan's to go in September.
So hopefully the pass will be open then. Thanks much for your time!