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Re: Airport

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Airport
April 23, 2011 04:34PM
Which airport has easiest access to Yosemite? Which airport is more affordable? Are there public transit between any airports and the valley?
avatar Re: Airport
April 23, 2011 04:55PM
Fresno-Yosemite Airport may be the closest major airport, but there aren't too many good flight options. There are flights to Mammoth Yosemite Airport, but Yosemite may not be terribly accessible if Tioga Road is closed. Merced Airport supposedly has access to YARTS, but the airport barely has commercial service. Amtrak also runs a bus service to Yosemite from Merced, but that's from the Merced train station. You might also be required to take a train segment (it's saying something about a state law that requires that this service includes one train travel segment).

http://www.amtrakcalifornia.com/index.cfm/destinations/yosemite-national-park/

Really - I would think the Bay Area airports are pretty good if you're looking to rent a car. There are far more flight options.
avatar Re: Airport
April 23, 2011 04:59PM
Sacramento is a good choice. Lots of flights, rental cars, right on I5, easy in and out, about one hour from 120 east off of 99 at Manteca.

Oakland or San Jose are a bit futher away but still not too bad.



Old Dude
avatar Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 12:52AM
By an off chance, you're a pilot (or might want to charter a private flight), the two closest general aviation airports would be Mariposa-Yosemite Airport, just north of Mariposa on CA Hwy 49, and Pine Mountain Lake Airport, east of Groveland off of Ferretti Road (which connects to CA Hwy 120). Again, these are general aviation airports with no commercial flights, but air charters can fly in and out of them.

As others have mentioned, for commercial flights, Fresno (FAT), Sacramento (SMF), or the Bay Area Airports (SFO, OAK, or SJC), are the best bets, but it couldn't hurt to check the few flights that are available out of Modesto (MOD) and Merced (MCE) too.
avatar Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 01:12AM
Quote
plawrence
By an off chance, you're a pilot (or might want to charter a private flight), the two closest general aviation airports would be Mariposa-Yosemite Airport

I flew there once.
avatar Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 02:07AM
On the Eastside, there is a general aviation airport at Lee Vining.
Further south along US395, the Mammoth Yosemite Airport is also served by a couple commercial carriers.
avatar Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 01:45PM
Reno is a 2.5 hour drive to Lee Vining if you are going to the east side, Tuolumne Meadows, etc. Mammonth has 1 flight a day half the year, 2 flights a day the other half of the year, all from LA.
Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 02:29PM
One of the major issues with closer airports is flight availability. My family and friends usually fly into sfo or oak. There might be public transit from Merced?
avatar Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 02:34PM
Quote
Marksm
One of the major issues with closer airports is flight availability. My family and friends usually fly into sfo or oak. There might be public transit from Merced?

YARTS and Amtrak bus service. However - Amtrak bus service apparently requires that one actually take a train leg and use the bus as a connector. I know one can fly into Oakland and then take the shuttle to the Coliseum BART station, then walk along the ramp to the Coliseum. The Amtrak station is halfway along that ramp. I don't know what trains go from there to Merced.

Frankly - the cost of public transportation starts getting high if you start throwing in lots of legs. It would be more cost effective and convenient to rent a car at that point - especially if there are several people in the party.
Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 04:28PM
That is our plan. We have booked flights into Oakland airport and getting a wheelchair friendly rental van. We plan on exploring San Francisco for a day or two, and then head straight into Yosemite. I hear the drive is quiet pleasant.
avatar Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 06:18PM
Quote
y_p_w

YARTS and Amtrak bus service. However - Amtrak bus service apparently requires that one actually take a train leg and use the bus as a connector. I know one can fly into Oakland and then take the shuttle to the Coliseum BART station, then walk along the ramp to the Coliseum. The Amtrak station is halfway along that ramp. I don't know what trains go from there to Merced.

Frankly - the cost of public transportation starts getting high if you start throwing in lots of legs. It would be more cost effective and convenient to rent a car at that point - especially if there are several people in the party.

If you are flying into the Bay Area and want to take Amtrak from the Bay Area to Yosemite, the way to do it would be to fly into either Oakland (OAK) or San Francisco (SFO) and then take BART to the Richmond BART Station, which is adjacent to the Richmond Amtrak Station. At the Richmond Amtrak station board the Amtrak San Joaquin to Merced, where a connecting AMTRAK Thruway Bus will take you to Yosemite.

The Amtrak fare from Richmond to Yosemite (it includes the cost of the Amtrak Thruway bus service) is $33 one-way. Note, if you belong to AAA you can receive an additional 10% discount on the fare.
avatar Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 10:14PM
Quote
plawrence
Quote
y_p_w

YARTS and Amtrak bus service. However - Amtrak bus service apparently requires that one actually take a train leg and use the bus as a connector. I know one can fly into Oakland and then take the shuttle to the Coliseum BART station, then walk along the ramp to the Coliseum. The Amtrak station is halfway along that ramp. I don't know what trains go from there to Merced.

Frankly - the cost of public transportation starts getting high if you start throwing in lots of legs. It would be more cost effective and convenient to rent a car at that point - especially if there are several people in the party.

If you are flying into the Bay Area and want to take Amtrak from the Bay Area to Yosemite, the way to do it would be to fly into either Oakland (OAK) or San Francisco (SFO) and then take BART to the Richmond BART Station, which is adjacent to the Richmond Amtrak Station. At the Richmond Amtrak station board the Amtrak San Joaquin to Merced, where a connecting AMTRAK Thruway Bus will take you to Yosemite.

The Amtrak fare from Richmond to Yosemite (it includes the cost of the Amtrak Thruway bus service) is $33 one-way. Note, if you belong to AAA you can receive an additional 10% discount on the fare.

I was thinking the Oakland Airport/Coliseum Amtrak station because of its proximity to the airport. However - apparently the San Joaquin doesn't stop there (does at Jack London Square). I tried looking, and it's $60 one-way from there to Yosemite with the Capitol Corridor, a bus bridge, the San Joaquin from Stockton, and finally the bus to Yosemite. I think you're right that Richmond would be the most convenient, but you gotta remember it's Downtown Richmond.
avatar Re: Airport
April 24, 2011 11:47PM
Quote
y_p_w

Quote
plawrence
If you are flying into the Bay Area and want to take Amtrak from the Bay Area to Yosemite, the way to do it would be to fly into either Oakland (OAK) or San Francisco (SFO) and then take BART to the Richmond BART Station, which is adjacent to the Richmond Amtrak Station. At the Richmond Amtrak station board the Amtrak San Joaquin to Merced, where a connecting AMTRAK Thruway Bus will take you to Yosemite.

The Amtrak fare from Richmond to Yosemite (it includes the cost of the Amtrak Thruway bus service) is $33 one-way. Note, if you belong to AAA you can receive an additional 10% discount on the fare.

I was thinking the Oakland Airport/Coliseum Amtrak station because of its proximity to the airport. However - apparently the San Joaquin doesn't stop there (does at Jack London Square). I tried looking, and it's $60 one-way from there to Yosemite with the Capitol Corridor, a bus bridge, the San Joaquin from Stockton, and finally the bus to Yosemite. I think you're right that Richmond would be the most convenient, but you gotta remember it's Downtown Richmond.

Actually, it's safer to go from the Richmond BART Station to the Richmond Amtrak Station since they're literally adjacent to one another (similar to how the Millbrae BART station is adjacent and connected to the Millbrae Caltrain Station).

This is in contrast to how the Coliseum Amtrak Station is set apart and isolated from the Coliseum BART station. Also, I don't think the neighborhood surrounding the Coliseum BART and Amtrak Stations is any safer than the neighborhood surrounding the Richmond BART and Amtrak stations.
Re: Airport
April 30, 2011 09:20AM
Both are not great neighborhoods, but the Richmond station is a bit closer, for BART and Amtrak.
Re: Airport
April 30, 2011 12:10PM
A friend of mine was mugged at the Coliseum BART last year. The guy claimed he had a guy, so my buddy just gave him his wallet and phone.
Re: Airport
May 09, 2011 09:13AM
I wouldn't be suprise, or anywhere in Oakland. It is not a very safe city.
Re: Airport
April 30, 2011 05:00PM
Thanks guys for all the help. I think we will try for OAK and take a rental car. They have the most availability of flights and prices are pretty competitive.
Re: Airport
May 06, 2011 01:57AM
I have friends flying in to join us, I guess I will suggest this option too.
Re: Airport
May 06, 2011 02:25PM
You will probably want to fly into major airports in Sacramento, San Francisco, or Oakland. Reno is not too far away either.
avatar Re: Airport
May 07, 2011 09:16AM
Don'r rule out San Jose, which has some good rates.
Re: Airport
May 08, 2011 11:31PM
SJ adds like an extra hour tough? Oak is usually price equivalent.
Re: Airport
May 09, 2011 12:38AM
With gas prices so high, that extra hour can add up.
avatar Re: Airport
May 09, 2011 02:33AM
Quote
GreatRafter
SJ adds like an extra hour tough? Oak is usually price equivalent.

No, not according to Google Maps. Departing from San Jose International Airport (SJC) instead of Oakland International Airport (OAK) would only add 15 to 30 minutes to the trip (depending on the traffic conditions).
avatar Re: Airport
May 09, 2011 11:56AM
From San Jose you head south on 101 to Gilroy and then take the pass over by San Luis Reservoir and then straight across the Valley to Oakhurst or Mariposa. The only real traffic is heading south on 101, depending upon time of day. It's worth it if you can get a better airfare rate.
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