Upper Pines Campground is located in breathtaking Yosemite National Park in Central Californias rugged Sierra Nevada Mountain Range at an elevation of 4,000 feet. The site is situated in the heart of Yosemite Valley, an awe-inspiring landscape containing many of the famous features for which Yosemite National Park is known.
Within Yosemite, visitors can gaze upon waterfalls, sheer granite cliffs, deep valleys, grand meadows, ancient giant sequoias, vast wilderness areas and much more.
Yosemite Valley is forested with a diverse mix of California black oak, Ponderosa pine, incense-cedar, White fir, and Whiteleaf Manzanita, which offers a pleasant combination of sun and shade. Through the trees, Yosemites telltale granite cliffs peek through, and the gentle, refreshing Merced River flows nearby.
Yosemites trails, cliffs, roads and rivers provide endless recreational activities for any kind of visitor. Hiking, biking, rock climbing, fishing, horseback riding, rafting, auto touring, cross-country skiing and photography are all very popular activities within the park.
Hiking trails range from the easy paved, two-mile roundtrip walk to Mirror Lake/Meadow, to the grueling but rewarding 14- to 16-mile trek to Half Dome (permit required). Both of these trails begin near the Pines Campgrounds, and there are many additional trailheads within Yosemite Valley.
Rafting the Merced River is a fun way to cool down on a summer day when water levels are sufficient. Yosemite Valley also offers numerous guided bus tours, educational programs, museums, ranger-led activities and an art center with workshops.
Upper Pines Campground is the largest of the three reservation campgrounds in Yosemite Valley It offers paved roads and parking spurs, flush toilets, and drinking water. Each campsite contains a picnic table, fire ring, and a food storage locker. Yosemites free shuttle bus stops near the campground entrance.
Nearby historic Curry Village offers a general store, restaurants and bar, amphitheater, coin showers, and tours and activities desk.
Glacier Point offers sweeping views of Yosemite Valley, Little Yosemite Valley, Half Dome, Vernal and Nevada Falls, and Clouds Rest, among other notable landmarks.
The Tioga Road offers a 39-mile scenic drive past forests, meadows, lakes and granite domes. Beautiful Hetch Hetchy Reservoir is home to spectacular scenery and numerous wilderness trailheads.
This is my third time here and wont be my last. This campground is one of the popular one and I recommend making reservations for you or your group weeks ahead. the site here is 26 dollars a night which is on the more expensive side but is totally worth it. The sites here are back to back so you are very close to your neighbors. Each site comes with a fire ring table and a bear box. At night it is a must you put your scented items in there. Most people don't know but toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant and water bottles can attract bears so you should put it in there. The restroom is fairly clean but some times it runs out of toilet paper like I experienced my first time here. Some people stay here for weeks at a time so they can explore the entire Park. This site is a must come if you have never been to Yosemite before.
I guess that's the trade in when you go somewhere so established as one of the most beautiful places in the U.S. They have everything you need, firepit, table, food storage bit we were basically camping with two other families because they were so close. The hiking I'm the park is incredible bit do your research as we didn't know that some of the trails require permits. We did the Upper Yosemite Falls trail it was very difficult but extremely rewarding.
We visited here again last year. Our campsites were in different loop every night but worth the move! No hookups but you get a bear box and fire ring here. There are bathrooms and some even have an outlet to charge phone or dry your hair! I don't even care that there aren't showers. Bathe in river or go to housekeeping for a pay shower. Located on Merced River so plenty of activities. Bike, swim, hike…everything for outdoor adventure junky!! Located close to all the action. YOu can take buses around park or bike to curry village.
site: small with little or no privacy. some tree cover and a stream near. amenities: not very clean facilities- a lot of people are using them! attractions: in the middle of everything Yosemite has to offer. close to shuttle stops. I would choose to camp at another campground in the park (just drove through checking out the campground).
Upper Pines is not a place you go to for relaxation and solitude - but then neither is Yosemite Valley. Upper Pines is a great home base for seeing all of the sights of Yosemite Valley. The valley shuttle runs from right outside the campground. If you manage to get a spot a bit further back in the loops, these seemed quieter. But it's a nice, reasonably priced location for what it is. The amenities weren't great, though - there are no dishwashing stations, so if you're tent camping, you best bring a bin or something to do your dishes back at your site.
Yosemite is the golden gem of the National Parks system. It's one of a kind landscape and unmatched beauty is something that has to be experienced, not just seen.
Getting there: The drive down into the Yosemite is grueling… you WILL be stuck behind someone who goes 10 mph under the speed limit, its taking picture on their phone while they are driving, and has a turn signal on the entire time. These people are the unavoidable demon of a place so famous and beautiful that every gaper out there wants to come and see it for themselves.
Campsites: Upper Pines sits along the Merced River and just on the North edge of the campgrounds for the valley. It location is great for access to the trailheads for Half Dome, Mirror Lake and Nevada Falls. The whole campsite has a great view looking up at Half Dome. The river is a perfect spot to wash off or cool down after a hike. WARNING: Because Upper Pines sits along and is so exposed to the forest there is HEAVY BEAR ACTIVITY. Keep your campsite clean, keep all food/toothpaste/sunscreen/anything that smells (even canned beer or alcohol) in the Bear Bin. I have stayed at Upper Pines about a dozen times and about half of those trips there will be a bear incident someplace in the campsite. If you're not prepared to chase a bear away from your tent, your car, or your family… stay someplace else.
The Park: Yosemite is awesome.
What to do: I'm sure this will be covered more in-depth in a different review.