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Re: Rafting

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avatar Rafting
July 14, 2011 01:45PM
Rafts are available to rent at the Curry Village Recreation Center from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. daily.
Re: Rafting
July 14, 2011 03:37PM
I'll add that the last bus at the end of the 3 mile course leaves at 6pm.

If you have your own raft, you have a couple options. 1.Car shuttle. 2.Get out at Swinging Bridge, deflate and walk to the shuttle stop on the north side of the river. 3.Or rent life jackets, which are your tickets on the bus. You'll have to deflate your raft, but they have a place for them under the seats in the luggage storage area. Buying your own raft may seem expensive, but each person costs $26. So if 4 of you want to raft, that's over $100. You can get a decent 5 man raft for not much more than that. Then you have it for future visits. I got a 5 person (800lb capacity) Sevylor raft for about $150 5 years ago and have used it several times (wish I could visit more in rafting season, but it never works out that way) Although it says 5 man, it comfortably carries 3 adults in reality. Raft two or three times in your visit and it pays for itself.

Anyone happen to know the distance from the launch point to Swinging Bridge?



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 07/14/2011 03:40PM by hotrod4x5.
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 08:20AM
Quote
hotrod4x5
I'll add that the last bus at the end of the 3 mile course leaves at 6pm.

If you have your own raft, you have a couple options. 1.Car shuttle. 2.Get out at Swinging Bridge, deflate and walk to the shuttle stop on the north side of the river. 3.Or rent life jackets, which are your tickets on the bus. You'll have to deflate your raft, but they have a place for them under the seats in the luggage storage area. Buying your own raft may seem expensive, but each person costs $26. So if 4 of you want to raft, that's over $100. You can get a decent 5 man raft for not much more than that. Then you have it for future visits. I got a 5 person (800lb capacity) Sevylor raft for about $150 5 years ago and have used it several times (wish I could visit more in rafting season, but it never works out that way) Although it says 5 man, it comfortably carries 3 adults in reality. Raft two or three times in your visit and it pays for itself.

Anyone happen to know the distance from the launch point to Swinging Bridge?

Via the road it's just under a mile from Stoneman Bridge to Swinging Bridge. But add the curvature of the river and you are probably adding about another 1/2 of a mile. Usually takes about 1 1/2 hours to float.

Definitely get your own raft if you are going to float the river more than once.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/15/2011 08:22AM by mtn man.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 08:36AM
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mtn man
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hotrod4x5
Anyone happen to know the distance from the launch point to Swinging Bridge?

Via the road it's just under a mile from Stoneman Bridge to Swinging Bridge. But add the curvature of the river and you are probably adding about another 1/2 of a mile. Usually takes about 1 1/2 hours to float.


A quick check on TOPO! shows the river distance from Stoneman Bridge to Swinging Bridge as 2.1 miles.
(Southside Road distance between those points is 1.7 miles. It's 1.0 mile from Stoneman Bridge to Sentinel Bridge.)
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 09:00AM
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szalkowski
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mtn man
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hotrod4x5
Anyone happen to know the distance from the launch point to Swinging Bridge?

Via the road it's just under a mile from Stoneman Bridge to Swinging Bridge. But add the curvature of the river and you are probably adding about another 1/2 of a mile. Usually takes about 1 1/2 hours to float.


A quick check on TOPO! shows the river distance from Stoneman Bridge to Swinging Bridge as 2.1 miles.
(Southside Road distance between those points is 1.7 miles. It's 1.0 mile from Stoneman Bridge to Sentinel Bridge.)

OOOOOOOPS, you are right. I was accidently measuring from Sentinel Bridge to Swinging Bridge. I think I need reading glasses.......
Re: Rafting
July 18, 2011 09:29AM
Quote
hotrod4x5
I'll add that the last bus at the end of the 3 mile course leaves at 6pm.

If you have your own raft, you have a couple options. 1.Car shuttle. 2.Get out at Swinging Bridge, deflate and walk to the shuttle stop on the north side of the river. 3.Or rent life jackets, which are your tickets on the bus.



FYI - Last year we floated down the river on our own tubes (many times) and we were able to ride the shuttle back for free - no questions asked. We had to deflate our tubes and put them under the bus. We stay in Housekeeping so getting dropped off at Curry works perfectly for us.
Re: Rafting
July 23, 2011 09:23PM
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TinaD
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hotrod4x5
I'll add that the last bus at the end of the 3 mile course leaves at 6pm.

If you have your own raft, you have a couple options. 1.Car shuttle. 2.Get out at Swinging Bridge, deflate and walk to the shuttle stop on the north side of the river. 3.Or rent life jackets, which are your tickets on the bus.



FYI - Last year we floated down the river on our own tubes (many times) and we were able to ride the shuttle back for free - no questions asked. We had to deflate our tubes and put them under the bus. We stay in Housekeeping so getting dropped off at Curry works perfectly for us.
I guess it depends on the bus driver. When we were deflating our raft (with our life jackets in hand as our tickets to ride) another couple came up and asked us if we were just going to get on the bus. They also had their own raft. I explained that the jacket was the ticket to ride. I told them that if they walked up the road just a short distance, they could cross Swinging Bridge and catch the regular bus. Just then the girl who was loading rafts came over to them with two life jackets. She said,
"If you will return these for me, I will let you take them as your ticket for the bus."

As we boarded the bus, the driver watched every single person and clicked a clicker for each person/life jacket.

This was my experience, I guess you guys got lucky. Personally, for the 2 bucks it cost to get the jacket, I wouldn't risk not getting a ride back. Oh, and you don't need to stand in the long raft line to get jackets, just go to the bike register to the left and pay for your jackets without waiting in the long line.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 07:21AM
Hmm.... I've actually never contemplated boating the river.

I presume with my own boat I can get jump in and out wherever I want...
Prob. jump in at Clarks and float down to Cathedral Beach... 5 miles o floating... smiling smiley

I also presume I don't really need a life jacket... although you do. wink

Get in before 10am and I got it to myself... hmm....

Comments?



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 08:14AM
Quote
chick-on
Hmm.... I've actually never contemplated boating the river.

I presume with my own boat I can get jump in and out wherever I want...
Prob. jump in at Clarks and float down to Cathedral Beach... 5 miles o floating... smiling smiley

I also presume I don't really need a life jacket... although you do. wink

Get in before 10am and I got it to myself... hmm....

Comments?

Park Service prohibits vessels east of Stoneman Bridge and west of Sentinel Beach Picnic area. They actually have a rope float across the river there and an employee in the water waving you into the beach. You have to have a life jacket in the vessel but don't have to wear it unless you are under a certain age(check the regulations).



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/15/2011 08:15AM by mtn man.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 08:39AM
Bummer... wanted to floaty down to El Cap area... and hang out there...

Buzz kill

tanks for the info



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 08:50AM
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chick-on
Bummer... wanted to floaty down to El Cap area... and hang out there...

Buzz kill

tanks for the info

Years ago (20 or so) you could go all the way to the old El Cap. picnic ground and get out there. Took about 3 hours. Great float ride! And you used to be able to put your raft in at the Lower Pines and North Pines campgrounds.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 11:20AM
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mtn man
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chick-on
Bummer... wanted to floaty down to El Cap area... and hang out there...

Buzz kill

tanks for the info

Years ago (20 or so) you could go all the way to the old El Cap. picnic ground and get out there. Took about 3 hours. Great float ride! And you used to be able to put your raft in at the Lower Pines and North Pines campgrounds.

Why did the Park Service shorten the route along the Merced?

I recall even back in the 1990's one could legally float down past Sentinel Beach and get out of the river at the Yellow Pines campground. And earlier, even farther down at Cathedral Beach.
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 11:26AM
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plawrence
get out of the river at the Yellow Pines campground. And earlier, even farther down at Cathedral Beach.
Yellow Pines?? Is that a defunct site?
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 11:31AM
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hotrod4x5
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plawrence
get out of the river at the Yellow Pines campground. And earlier, even farther down at Cathedral Beach.

Yellow Pines?? Is that a defunct site?

No. It's still an active group campground. But it's usually reserved by groups closely connected to Yosemite. Volunteers working for the Yosemite Conservancy often camp there. I've seen it used year around, including in the middle of winter.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 12:35PM
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plawrence
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hotrod4x5
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plawrence
get out of the river at the Yellow Pines campground. And earlier, even farther down at Cathedral Beach.

Yellow Pines?? Is that a defunct site?

No. It's still an active group campground. But it's usually reserved by groups closely connected to Yosemite. Volunteers working for the Yosemite Conservancy often camp there. I've seen it used year around, including in the middle of winter.


Is it the campground labelled "Muir Tree" seen below just below and left of the center of the scanned image (from an old entrance station handout map)?




Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 07/15/2011 12:42PM by szalkowski.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 01:05PM
It appears so:
https://picasaweb.google.com/yosemite.chick.on/YoseMaps#5561012284569149858

Another neat map is here:
https://picasaweb.google.com/yosemite.chick.on/YoseMaps#5568039070212136674
(include Bear Feeding Platform and Indian Caves)

This one has it on it:
https://picasaweb.google.com/yosemite.chick.on/YoseMaps#5568040142076182866



Chick-on is looking at you!



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 07/15/2011 01:18PM by chick-on.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 02:10PM
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chick-on
This one has it on it:
https://picasaweb.google.com/yosemite.chick.on/YoseMaps#5568040142076182866


Did you notice that the dates on this map and the one that I scanned are the same (April 1968, Revised 1973)? The number on the lower right-hand corner is also the same (the trailing 6 got cut off when I cropped it).

The only differences are that campground name (Yellow Pine vs. Muir Tree) and the medical facility (Hospital vs. Clinic).

The NPS has to do more misdirection than that if they really want to trip up people. (Maybe that's what the switchback straightenings were meant to do.)
Marmot
avatar Re: Rafting
July 18, 2011 02:34PM
Here's an older map (still shows the old gas station) of a portion of Yosemite Valley that clearly shows the location of the Yellow Pines campground:

avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 01:15PM
That's very close, except the campground is between that camp road shown on the map and Southside drive (and not between the camp road and the Merced River to the north). You take the same side road off of Southside Drive that one takes for the Sentinel Beach picnic area, but then hang a left turn on the campground road to enter the Yellow Pines Group Campground instead of continuing on to the Sentinel Beach picnic area.

Besides the Yosemite Conversancy, other volunteer workgroups are permitted to camp there.

Here's a link to a volunteer work "expedition" offered by REI Adventures that will be staying in the Yellow Pines Campground this upcoming September. The cost of this "volunteer expedition" to Yosemite is $295 for five day/four nights: REI Adventures: 2011 Yosemite Volunteer Expedition
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 01:20PM
Quote
szalkowski
Is it the campground labelled "Muir Tree" seen below just below and left of the center of the scanned image (from an old entrance station handout map)?


I just want to note how "streamline" the Four Mile Trail was depicted back then. Not one single switchback at all on the trail!
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 01:37PM
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plawrence
Quote
szalkowski
Is it the campground labelled "Muir Tree" seen below just below and left of the center of the scanned image (from an old entrance station handout map)?


I just want to note how "streamline" the Four Mile Trail was depicted back then. Not one single switchback at all on the trail!

Snow Creek seems a bit straight as well.
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 01:46PM
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szalkowski
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plawrence
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hotrod4x5
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plawrence
get out of the river at the Yellow Pines campground. And earlier, even farther down at Cathedral Beach.

Yellow Pines?? Is that a defunct site?

No. It's still an active group campground. But it's usually reserved by groups closely connected to Yosemite. Volunteers working for the Yosemite Conservancy often camp there. I've seen it used year around, including in the middle of winter.


Is it the campground labelled "Muir Tree" seen below just below and left of the center of the scanned image (from an old entrance station handout map)?

Apparently it at one time in the early 70's was a "backpacker's campground", had to walk in to it.
Re: Rafting
July 18, 2011 11:25AM
Somewhat off topic question: Is the Yellow Pine that this campground is named after the same (now long dead) tree referred to here as "The Giant Yellow Pine of Yosemite": http://www.yosemite.ca.us/library/cone-bearing_trees/western_yellow_pine.html (and also maybe here: http://www.yosemite.ca.us/library/trees_of_yosemite/ponderosa_pine.html )?
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 01:58PM
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plawrence
Quote
mtn man
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chick-on
Bummer... wanted to floaty down to El Cap area... and hang out there...

Buzz kill

tanks for the info

Years ago (20 or so) you could go all the way to the old El Cap. picnic ground and get out there. Took about 3 hours. Great float ride! And you used to be able to put your raft in at the Lower Pines and North Pines campgrounds.

Why did the Park Service shorten the route along the Merced?

I recall even back in the 1990's one could legally float down past Sentinel Beach and get out of the river at the Yellow Pines campground. And earlier, even farther down at Cathedral Beach.

When they took out the El Capitan picnic area (the old one) which was right along the Merced (they relocated it to the north side of Northside Drive), the rafting concession had to find another place to take out their rafts. I think they used Cathedral picnic area first, but I could be wrong. For many years now they have used Sentinel picnic area. Definitely a shorter float ride than it used to be.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 02:03PM
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mtn man
For many years now they have used Sentinel picnic area.

Something to remember if one is planning a picnic.
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 02:14PM
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eeek
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mtn man
For many years now they have used Sentinel picnic area.

Something to remember if one is planning a picnic.

Good point. Yes that picnic area during raftng season is very busy with buses and large trucks picking up the rafts. For a quieter area in the Valley one might want to go to Cathedral or El Cap. picninc areas. Or just find a place to park and find your own spot along the Merced (don't forget the anti- mosquito stuff).
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 02:33PM
Quote
mtn man
Good point. Yes that picnic area during raftng season is very busy with buses and large trucks picking up the rafts. For a quieter area in the Valley one might want to go to Cathedral or El Cap. picninc areas. Or just find a place to park and find your own spot along the Merced (don't forget the anti- mosquito stuff).

Three weeks ago one could have rafted in Cathedral:


http://yosemitephotos.net/main.php/v/yosemite/cm-dsc_1684.jpg.html
Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 04:29PM
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mtn man
Quote
plawrence
Quote
mtn man
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chick-on
Bummer... wanted to floaty down to El Cap area... and hang out there...

Buzz kill

tanks for the info

Years ago (20 or so) you could go all the way to the old El Cap. picnic ground and get out there. Took about 3 hours. Great float ride! And you used to be able to put your raft in at the Lower Pines and North Pines campgrounds.

Why did the Park Service shorten the route along the Merced?

I recall even back in the 1990's one could legally float down past Sentinel Beach and get out of the river at the Yellow Pines campground. And earlier, even farther down at Cathedral Beach.

The El Capitan picnic area was relocated off the Merced in 1992. The Muir Tree campground was closed around 1983.

When they took out the El Capitan picnic area (the old one) which was right along the Merced (they relocated it to the north side of Northside Drive), the rafting concession had to find another place to take out their rafts. I think they used Cathedral picnic area first, but I could be wrong. For many years now they have used Sentinel picnic area. Definitely a shorter float ride than it used to be.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 08:52AM
Quote
chick-on
Bummer... wanted to floaty down to El Cap area... and hang out there...

Buzz kill

tanks for the info


Dear Chick-on,
Bill-e-g can exit the river with the boat while you use your Model 007 strap-on, anti-drowning, safety apparatus
http://www.fireworkscrazy.co.uk/store/shopexd.asp?id=312
to continue on to El Cap.
(SinceYouDon'tFlySoGoodly Yours)
The Marmots

P.S. Also, see "A happier way to say goodbye": http://www.heavensabovefireworks.com/index.php/self_fired_rockets/
P.P.S. We know, silly chikin, but 'goodly' works so much better than 'wellly' in the valediction.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/15/2011 09:02AM by szalkowski.
avatar Re: Rafting
July 15, 2011 11:28AM
For something different you could take your small boat and legally float down the South Fork of the Merced around Wawona. According to the NPS website, that's also permitted. The website isn't really clear about what constitutes "the Wawona area" though. Its exact quote:

Quote
www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/water.htm

Rafting is also permitted on the South Fork of the Merced River in the Wawona area.
Re: Rafting
July 18, 2011 09:23AM
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chick-on
Bummer... wanted to floaty down to El Cap area... and hang out there...

Buzz kill

tanks for the info

I tried taking my raft out at the end and bushwacking around to get back in the river a few years ago. Ended up with a popped raft and 70 mosquito bites.
Re: Rafting
July 16, 2011 09:39PM
My wife and daughters rafted on Friday - They had a great time and there were some very nice views (that's true from anywhere in the Valley) but they felt it was a little short - It's billed as being 2 hours but you can easily get to Yellow Pines in less than 60 minutes
Re: Rafting
July 24, 2011 06:19PM
I bring my own raft...I usually do this in September. There are some very shallow parts, by this time of the year, so we pull the raft through, a few feet. I wonder if this year, the water level will be a bit higher in Sept..
Re: Rafting
July 24, 2011 10:57PM
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Red Lipstick
I bring my own raft...I usually do this in September. There are some very shallow parts, by this time of the year, so we pull the raft through, a few feet. I wonder if this year, the water level will be a bit higher in Sept..
Basically they say the levels are a month behind. So in Sept, expect August conditions.
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