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Re: Campsite reservation rush

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avatar Campsite reservation rush
February 15, 2009 02:55PM
Yosemitecampsites.com campground rankings by number of hits:

Upper Pines is in first by a lot
North Pines
Lower Pines
Tuolumne
Hodgdone and Wawona are tied
Crane Flat is last by a mile

avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 15, 2009 06:24PM
eeeek:>>Crane Flat is last by a mile<<

HA! That would explain why that is the only campground that I have ever been able to reserve...!

B
Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 17, 2009 01:53PM
After striking out in the Valley (what a screwy system!) I tried Crane Flat - it only showed four campsites, and none available! :-/ I got one at Hodgdon, and there were plenty left.





Wilderness forever,
Bruce Jensen
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 17, 2009 11:01PM
I plan on entering the Valley this Friday at around 3:00ish in the afternoon. After parusing my AAA Campbook and the www.recreation.gov site I found out that Upper Pines this time of year is first come first serve (everyone else probably knows this) Do I have a any chance of checking in straightaway and getting a site (I have never done Yosemite in the Winter so this is all unfamiliar) Otherwise, I will have to have back-up plans (are there any park and stay facilities close by) I have had great luck elsewhere just dropping in in Winter, but this IS Yosemite.

B
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 08:49AM
Bee wrote:

> I plan on entering the Valley this Friday at around 3:00ish in
> the afternoon. After parusing my AAA Campbook and the
> www.recreation.gov site I found out that Upper Pines this time
> of year is first come first serve (everyone else probably knows
> this) Do I have a any chance of checking in straightaway and
> getting a site (I have never done Yosemite in the Winter so
> this is all unfamiliar) Otherwise, I will have to have back-up
> plans (are there any park and stay facilities close by) I have
> had great luck elsewhere just dropping in in Winter, but this
> IS Yosemite.

You should have no problems. Very few people opt to camp when it's cold and there may be snow on the ground. I've seen Camp 4 in the winter with maybe 2 or 3 tents total.

I remember trying to find a place to stay in the winter. The Ahwahnee and Yosemite Lodge are typically pretty full. I saw unheated cabins in Curry Village available too, although that might have changed with the recent rockfall.

During Feb 2007 I had one of two rooms booked on a Sunday night at the Best Western in Mariposa. It was odd going to the complimentary breakfast Monday morning and seeing the bored attendant just sitting there and telling me I was the only person left. It was also a bit odd getting a pizza in Mariposa (in time to watch the Oscars) and seeing the same ranger (wearing street clothes) who just led a guided hike a few hours earlier. I guess Degnans Pizza is closed for the winter.
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 09:02AM
YPW:>>You should have no problems<<

I was hoping this to be the case!

>>I had one of two rooms booked on a Sunday night at the Best Western in Mariposa<<

Staying in Mariposa is my alternate. I have a camper shell, so I wont be on the ground, but it still gets chilly!

B
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 09:27AM
I use something similar to this in the tent (or back of the Bronco) when I'm feeling a little too chilly. They work great! Last time I needed it, the temp outside the tent was around 29 degrees and the heater kept the inside of the tent at 62 degrees!

avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 09:34AM
Looks nifty! Maybe something that REI would carry (too late for the usual internet sources)

No problem using it in closed environment? (exhaust)

B
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 10:16AM
Bee wrote:

> Looks nifty! Maybe something that REI would carry (too late for
> the usual internet sources)
>
> No problem using it in closed environment? (exhaust)

Coleman manufacturers a variety of catalytic heaters. The picture is of the Coleman SportCat Perfectemp. That's not one of the higher output ones. Here's one with twice the output:

http://www.coleman.com/coleman/colemancom/detail.asp?product_id=5033-750

I've seen some of them sold at Big 5 Sporting Goods. You might also be able to find them at discount stores. The one I saw was a free-standing one designed primarily for hunters waiting hours at a time in hunting stands.

I don't think it's recommended to use them for long periods of time in a small enclosed area like a tent. Tents require ventilation, and if your venting is blocked a little bit by snow you won't want something else using up your precious oxygen. Like Vince said, you can use it to get your area warm, and then turn it off. I've heard of some tents that have heater openings, such that the oxygen needed for the catalyst comes from outside.

avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 01:02PM
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 09:42AM
It is catalytic, so it puts off H20 and CO2. Leave the tent door open a small crack so the heater can breathe, and there you go. You don't want to run it all night while you're sleeping, the CO2 might build up too high, but by the time you've got your mummy bag all warmed up it won't matter!
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 09:48AM
Vince<<It is catalytic>>

I have a lot of catching up to do; I used to have the type that would kill you if you used it inside!

It looks like it uses the same screw-in propane cannisters that the stove uses -- convenient.

B
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 10:41AM
y_p_w: that's the model I use (couldn't find it quickly so went to Amazon for the photo of the other model).

I bought mine at REI for $70 several years ago and I've seen them at cheaper sporting good stores (Sprotsmans Warehouse, to name one) for under $50. A 16 oz bottle of propane lasts about 6-7 hrs. (How do I know this? Heated my bedroom at home one night and timed it!)

Anyway, before I make a motel reservation I think I'll peruse the campsites at Upper Pines first thing on Friday. I was going to take all the camping gear out of the truck but now I might just leave it be...
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 10:46AM
I LOVE this site; it assuages all sorts of paranoia over the little things that crop up before a trip.

I have a Wal-Mart just around the corner(gag) and I will start there and move up the food chain. Its great to have the model type/pic to take shopping.

Guess I better get some work done now....

B
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 10:51AM
REI has the SportCat on their website. Not sure about their stores.

http://www.rei.com/product/768721

Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 12:10PM
Wow, this thread sure branched out to cover almost everything.

I have the SportCat also, and couldn't be happier with it. Inside the tent, I turn it on a bit at night while getting ready for bed or to read. In the morning it's great for taking enough of the edge of the cold off, and a great handwarmer. My tent has screen at top, so ventilation is no problem, but I still wouldn't leave it on at night. Easy on fuel too. Walmart, Big5, should have them if you don't want REI's price.

As for getting into Upper Pines, should be absolutely no problem. It was very muddy/snowy last week, so don't expect it to be inviting (this was last Feb.)


Of course there's Camp 4, if you REALLY want privacy:


and plenty of parking there..it's even "official":


Mariposa is nice if you're not staying in the valley; much as I like tent camping there, in winter it's sometimes nice to have a warm place to go. Mariposa Lodge is another nice one, and very reasonably priced in winter. Same in Oakhurst, if you prefer to enter on 41...there are several very decent and resonable motels; Days Inn or Best Western are both good, and no doubt others. Both Oakhurst and Mariposa are similar driving time to the Valley, though often different snow conditions.





Gary
Yosemite Photo Galleries: http://www.pbase.com/roberthouse/yo
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 01:12PM
Since we're venturing way off topic, I'm wondering what nutty, or even borderline illegal stuff have people seen in campsites.

I was at a federally-owned campsite last year and saw someone take a saw to a tree in order to clear a little more space for his RV trailer. It was just brushing against his RV which was a little too big for his space. At the same campsite I saw the group next to my campsite leave a lot of stuff out, and the ravens were having a field day leaving trying to get into what they hoped might be food. We had our stuff in our car (in plain sight), although that included food that wouldn't be allowed anywhere overnight in a car in Yosemite.
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 06:09PM
Vince:>>I think I'll peruse the campsites at Upper Pines first thing on Friday<<

This willl probably be the one and only time I will ever camp in the Valley, so I am hoping to give it a shot.

Sierrafan :>>Wow, this thread sure branched out to cover almost everything.<<

Sorry about that; I seem to be unable to stick to the topic very well sad smiley
BUT, I tried to choose an already active thread that was somewhat related to my question.....!!

Im going heater-hunting tonight and I am hoping to hit it big at Wal-mart...

y_p_w >>I'm wondering what nutty, or even borderline illegal stuff have people seen in campsites.<<

ummm...I saw/smelled a group of folks smoking "the good" stuff on one of my trips

B
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 06:38PM
Gary, was walking through our truck repair shop today, we've been doing "spring cleaning" (meaning nothing else to do lately) and we have this 55 gallon plastic barrel sitting there, with all these wooden sticks sticking out. I looked in and said "Wow, that's a lot of shovels."

I don't think they'll miss one this weekend.
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 06:52PM
YPW:>>REI has the SportCat on their website. Not sure about their stores.

http://www.rei.com/product/768721<<;

I just reserved the last one in town at REI; all the other stores were out or carried a different ($$$) model. Gonna go get it tomorrow and test it out.

B
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 07:01PM
Bee, you won't be disappointed.

Make sure you don't buy any 1# propane there. Go to wal-mart for that
avatar Re: Campsite reservation rush
February 18, 2009 07:15PM
Vince:>>Make sure you don't buy any 1# propane there. Go to wal-mart for that<<

heh heh heh: the girl who helped me on the phone whispered that same bit of info!

Well, I am secure in the fact that dealing with cold has been eliminated from my to-do list

B
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