Yosemite Bouldering Logistics
Yosemite National Park is open all year, but the northeastern entrance, Highway 120 west over Tioga Pass, can be closed from November to May due to snow. There are three other entrances: Highway 120 east, Highway 140 east, or Highway 41 North. YARTS offers a bus service from major cities outside the park for those flying into Fresno, Sacramento, or San Francisco. In the park, a shuttle bus provides transportation close to most of the bouldering destinations.
Yosemite features a few different options for visitors, with 13 campgrounds; some are reservable and others, like Camp 4, operate on a first- come, first- serve basis. Visit
recreation.gov to make reservations, join the long early- morning line at Camp 4 for a spot in the historic climber campground, or drop $ 560 a night to stay 500 feet from the Ahwahnee Boulders at the Majestic Hotel.
The boulders in Yosemite are climbable year- round, though the middle of summer can be hot and filled with tourists even on the south side of the Valley. November through March offer the best conditions, though it can be wet. October through early December and late February through early April offer the best windows.
The Yosemite Village store offers food and groceries, with everything from malt liquor to organic produce. On the west end of the Valley, Half Dome Village, by the Curry Boulders, provides a showering facility for $ 5. The nearest gas station is 14 miles away in El Portal, out the West Entrance, and usually costs $ 1 more per gallon than the average. Crane Flat, 16 miles away, and the Wawona Gas Station, 27 miles away, also offer overpriced gas. It’s best to fuel up outside the park. The Yosemite Lodge, Half Dome Village, and the library offer Internet.
Shannon Joslin and I will be printing The Yosemite Valley Bouldering Guide in early 2018, available for purchase online and in stores in and around the Valley. Matt Wilder’s Yosemite Valley Bouldering, published by SuperTopo, will also be available in the Mountain Shop in Half Dome Village.