Yosemite National Park Location
Yosemite National Park is located in California, USA. It is in Central California and is part of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. It is perhaps the second most well known American National Park next to Yellowstone.
Spanning an area of 1,169sq miles or 3,092km its safe to say it is not small at all.
At around 3 hours from Downtown San Francisco by car, it is fairly easy to access. Personally we only had time to do a day trip but many people stay for a few nights. Having around 6 hours or so in travel time on a day trip around 4 hours is spent enjoying the park. Having more time we would of most definitely stayed a couple of nights at least.
Where does the name Yosemite come from
An interesting story our tour guide explained to us where the name comes from. Native tribal people living here known Southern and Central Miwok when approached by the invaders would say Yohhe’meti in relation to the people living in the valley. What they did not realize at the time was Yohhe’meti in their language means “they are killers” “those who kill” as a rough translation. Feared by the surrounding tribes they where trying to warn those who wanted to enter the valley.
With staggering, awe-inspiring natural beauty like this though how could not want to explore!
El Capitan, Yosemite National Park
El Capitan or simply El Cap Is a towering monolith made from Granite. Located at the north side of the valley it is a remarkable 3,000 feet or 914m from its base to its tallest summit. Surprising despite the sheer size and verticality of El Capitan it is a very popular attraction for seasoned rock climbers. They can be seen as little specs once you train your eye to look for, hanging off the behemoth in sleeping bags attached to the rock, Crazy if you ask me.
Half dome, Yosemite National Park
Another cool thing our tour guide showed us. See the shape of that rock in the background? Looks the same shape as The North Face logo right? Say no more. Another popular summit but this one is not a sheer cliff like El Capitan and can be hiked even by amateurs or older children. 4,737 ft or 1,444m it is no easy hike though and a decent level of fitness is required.
Yosemite Natural Beauty
Regardless of the park’s most notable serious trails and cliffs, the natural beauty of Yosemite can not be ignored. Just having a stroll around the place feels like you have gone back in time, back in time to before humans came along and the Earth was left to its own devices. Jaw-dropping landscapes are everywhere one looks. Yosemite Falls is the highest waterfall in the park and is easily accessible to capture great views of its towering 2,425feet or 739m majesty. Officially listed HERE as the 6th tallest waterfall in North America.
Yosemite is a World Heritage site and features a broad array of natural wonders and biological diversity. A site to behold a must-see if you are visiting San Fransico – Read about my time in San Fransico HERE. Even if you can only spare a day trip as we did, the place will leave you feeling humble. More connected to mother nature, where we ultimately belong.
If possible I would say try and come in the summer months just so you are more likely to get good weather. Although an experience in the winter months would be something in and of its self, snow-capped mountains everywhere. Crisp cool air filling your lungs as you meander through many trails and pathway – I think a winter visit is needed for me too!