Re-Opening April 1: The Wawona

The Mariposa Grove-close landmark says hello to warmer weather.

DNC Parks & Resorts

SPRINGTIME DEBUT: So many marvelous things begin to bud and flower and get leafy and get green come the early days of April. Walk through any garden or along any nature path and you're bound to see stems pushing through soft earth, awakened by the season for awakening and, just perhaps, a few rain showers and promising weather events, too. But other non-leafy, non-flowery things zing into spring, too, and some of them happen to be made of wood and brick and carpeting. We speak of those businesses that take the wintertime off, or rather shutter for the colder months. Some venues still do this, following the more old-fashioned tradition of observing a season for being open. It's quaint, it charms, and it doesn't follow the path of this get-it-all-any-time world (and that's okay; we must ask if we need it all all the time in this day and age).

ONE OF THE MAIN DESTINATIONS... to keep to a warm-weather schedule is the landmark Wawona Hotel, of Yosemite National Park. Yes, you're right -- Theodore Roosevelt did stay there, back in the day, and a host of nature-minded luminaries. And, yes, you're right again -- Mariposa Grove, that stately expanse dotted with sequoias, is the Wawona's nearby neighbor. So do you desire some history and some looking up -- way, way up -- when the white, porch-lined, multi-building hotel re-debuts? Then mark your calendar for...

APRIL 1: No fooling -- that's the opening date, which we love, because vacations should be lighthearted, or at least often are. There are a few packages to eye, like the Wawona's Make History Package (you'll definitely hear tales of Teddy Roosevelt and more greats who've stayed), or you can simply make for the sequoias. Or, further afield, of course, Yosemite Valley, which is apiece up the road ("apiece"=about an hour). Note that restoration projects are going on around Mariposa Grove, which may close partially or fully later in 2015. Want to take a peek before that? Get there before July 2015.

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