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Re: Camp 4 availability

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Camp 4 availability
May 07, 2012 08:03PM
I'm thinking about trying to stay at camp 4 (much closer to our trailhead than the backpacker camp) the night before our hike this summer and I'm reading conflicting information on getting a spot. I understand that we'll have to line up in the morning prior to the ranger getting there at 8:30, but I'm confused on how many people are given spaces. There are supposed to be a total of 210 spots, but I've heard that the first 210 people in line may not get spots. I've read in a couple of places that when the rangers open up in the morning they announce how many spots are available for that night.

So if I get to the line and there are say 75 people ahead of me, am I guaranteed to get a spot? I don't want to waste a couple hours in line just to find out that they only gave spots to the first 65 people.

thanks
avatar Re: Camp 4 availability
May 07, 2012 09:31PM
There are no guarantees. Theoretically there could be no sites available although I'd guess it's unusual.

You probably already understand that Camp 4 is assigned per person and not per site with six people assigned per site. Even if people are theoretically in a group and together in line, they could be split up into different sites. It might not be a great idea to bring just one tent for a group of 4 if people are going to be split up. That generally wouldn't be an issue at the backpackers campground where you just show up and if it gets packed people just keep on adding themselves to occupied sites without any person officially making assignments.

I remember meeting a large group that was staying at Camp 4 in the winter. I'm not sure why they did that, although it was at a time where it was self-checkin. Upper Pines wasn't even close to being full, and they could get it for $20 per site.

If you don't get a site, then if you're going backpacking anyways - just use the backpackers campground. The shuttle runs starting at 7 AM.
Re: Camp 4 availability
May 08, 2012 10:45AM
I made the incorrect assumption that because camp 4 had no reservations, everyone had an equal shot of getting in on any given day. Evidently once you get in you can reserve the spot for multiple days.

Thanks for the reply.
Re: Camp 4 availability
May 08, 2012 11:12AM
Yes, it depends how long the previous campers are staying. During peak season, it is pretty brutal. Make backup plans because you may not get a site.
Re: Camp 4 availability
May 08, 2012 02:38PM
Yeah, there is a 7 day limit for Yosemite Valley camping this time of year, so technically, if everybody who booked the day before you arrived booked for 7 days, there would be no availability for 7 days. This doesn't happen of course, there is always some turn-over each day, but it is in no means the entire campground becoming available each day....
Re: Camp 4 availability
May 08, 2012 03:21PM
If I'm trying to get some Camp 4 spots, then I don't risk it and get there at 4 am and get in line. You're not allowed to sleep or camp outside the kiosk, but you can just sit right outside. I'm always the first one when everyone awakens from their cars to get in line.

Never had a problem securing a spot, even in peak summer days.
Re: Camp 4 availability
May 08, 2012 04:14PM
Quote
sactown23
I'm always the first one when everyone awakens from their cars to get in line.

That leads me to my next question. Where do you park when waiting in line? I thought the camp 4 lot required a permit.
Re: Camp 4 availability
May 09, 2012 05:55AM
Quote
DB1
Quote
sactown23
I'm always the first one when everyone awakens from their cars to get in line.

That leads me to my next question. Where do you park when waiting in line? I thought the camp 4 lot required a permit.
Not to mention it being illegal to sleep in your car in the park.
avatar Re: Camp 4 availability
May 09, 2012 06:17AM
Quote
hotrod4x5
Quote
DB1
Quote
sactown23
I'm always the first one when everyone awakens from their cars to get in line.

That leads me to my next question. Where do you park when waiting in line? I thought the camp 4 lot required a permit.
Not to mention it being illegal to sleep in your car in the park.

I don't believe that's technically correct. Once could secure a campsite and just sleep in the car. It wouldn't be illegal to sleep in a car while someone is driving, although the rules aren't clear. It would also be unusual for there to be any kind of action against someone for napping in a car during the day.

I remember going to Pinnacles NM with someone who was tired and just wanted to take a nap during the day. I asked a ranger if this was OK, and was told it was fine.

I know this says that one can't sleep in a car outside of a campground, but it's not the actual regulation.

http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/where.htm

If you read the park compendium, it only states that camping must occur in designated areas. They'd be hard pressed to kick someone out for "camping" for simply taking a nap during the day. The same goes for being out in the wilderness. Theoretically one wouldn't need a wilderness permit if they never set up a tent or slept (there are some rare people who never sleep) but it would be interesting trying to enforce that.

My kid easily falls asleep during the day. I doubt I'm getting a fine if a ranger sees my kid dozing off on a bench in Yosemite Valley. They're going to apply a certain amount of common sense.
Re: Camp 4 availability
May 09, 2012 10:19AM
Quote
y_p_w
Quote
hotrod4x5
Quote
DB1
Quote
sactown23
I'm always the first one when everyone awakens from their cars to get in line.

That leads me to my next question. Where do you park when waiting in line? I thought the camp 4 lot required a permit.
Not to mention it being illegal to sleep in your car in the park.

I don't believe that's technically correct. Once could secure a campsite and just sleep in the car. It wouldn't be illegal to sleep in a car while someone is driving, although the rules aren't clear. It would also be unusual for there to be any kind of action against someone for napping in a car during the day.

I remember going to Pinnacles NM with someone who was tired and just wanted to take a nap during the day. I asked a ranger if this was OK, and was told it was fine.

I know this says that one can't sleep in a car outside of a campground, but it's not the actual regulation.

http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/where.htm

If you read the park compendium, it only states that camping must occur in designated areas. They'd be hard pressed to kick someone out for "camping" for simply taking a nap during the day. The same goes for being out in the wilderness. Theoretically one wouldn't need a wilderness permit if they never set up a tent or slept (there are some rare people who never sleep) but it would be interesting trying to enforce that.

My kid easily falls asleep during the day. I doubt I'm getting a fine if a ranger sees my kid dozing off on a bench in Yosemite Valley. They're going to apply a certain amount of common sense.
I forgot two words to make it more accurate, " over night." I am pretty sure that a park LEO Ranger is going to ask you to leave the park if he discovers you sleeping in you your car in a parking lot or pullout.
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