Merced River flows by peacefully, and offers some great white water rafting. Also camping by the river gets you up close and personal with nature, but without all the crowds. Hike up Hite’s Cove Trail to view nature how it’s intended to be. You will get a taste of history too, in El Portal. It has a long past of gold mining and logging.
Easy Access to Yosemite
Only two miles from the entrance to Yosemite, it makes for easy access to the park. While here, of course, you can’t miss out on the wonders that exist in Yosemite National Park. Drive to Yosemite Village on Highway 140. Stop along the way to take in the sights. It will take your breath away.
Lodging is convenient in El Portal, so you should stop and stay a while. There are plenty of outdoor activities to keep the whole family occupied for weeks! You still have the ability to get groceries, since there is a small market. Naturally you’ll find the popular gift shops available so you can stock up on gifts for friends at home.
Climate around El Portal and Yosemite
The best time to come is the summer. The weather is mostly dry and warm. Most of the rainfall happens from January through March. Beware in the spring and fall, as wonderfully sunny and mild days can become suddenly stormy. And the storms can be quite violent.
Get into Yosemite National Park
The high Sierra is quite awesome, particularly the sights you’ll see in Yosemite. Many visitors prefer to see the waterfalls while others prefer the monolithic rocks towering overhead. Get out there and explore.
Some places to see while you’re here:
- Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias: Travel only about one hour south of Yosemite Valley near the south entrance to the park to see this huge stand of giant sequoias. Best time is May through October when the roads are definitely open.
- Tioga Road: This scenic drive takes you on a wonderful trip past lakes, granite domes and soft meadows. Take the turnouts provided for spectacular views. Don’t forget the camera!
- Tuolumne Meadows: A sub-alpine meadow with the Tuolumne River running through it. You’ll have to come here from mid-June to October; otherwise it’s only accessible with skis or snowshoes.