Yosemite National Park

What to Know: Day-Use Reservation System at Yosemite National Park

Some day-use reservations for the busy summer season have already opened up, with more to be made available on later dates

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Thinking about a day-trip to Yosemite National Park this summer? Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and crowd concerns, you'll need a reservation, which are now available online – at least for the first part of the peak season.

At 8 a.m. Wednesday, day-use reservations for May 21 - June 30 opened up on recreation.gov.

If you weren't able to book a reservation for that time period, don't worry. Day-use reservations for the remainder of the busy summer season will open up soon.

May 21 - June 30April 21
July 1 - July 31April 28
Aug. 1 - Aug. 31May 5
Sept. 1 - Sept. 30May 12

Beginning May 14, some additional reservations will open up at 8 a.m. every day for trips seven days out.

Day-use reservations are required for all visitors, including annual and lifetime pass holders, according to the park. Each day-use reservation is valid for one vehicle for three days.

If you have a reservation for places like The Ahwahnee Hotel, Yosemite Valley Lodge, Curry Village and campgrounds managed by the National Park Service, or if you have a Yosemite wilderness permit or Half Dome permit, you don't need a day-use reservation, the park said.

People entering the park on a Yosemite Area Regional Transportation System bus, on a bicycle, on foot or on horseback don't need a day-use reservation, according to the park.

The day-use reservation system will be in place through Sept. 30, but that date could change if coronavirus numbers improve, the park said.

A similar day-use reservation system was in place last summer. It resulted in Yosemite’s visitation rates dropping by half. 

For a complete breakdown of Yosemite's reservation system and answers to frequently asked questions, visit the park's website.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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