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Re: Backpacker camps and buses

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Backpacker camps and buses
June 09, 2020 09:00AM
There was one statement in the Yosemite re-opening which confused me a little. From the reopening FAQ, under the question "Are any areas of the park closed?":

Quote

Open with modifications:

Backpackers campgrounds are not open to people arriving in the park by bus (wilderness permit holders arriving by bus can stay in backpackers campgrounds)

I thought you always had to have a wilderness permit to stay in the backpacker campground. Did some exception exist pre-COVID where people arriving by bus could stay in the backpacking campground without a wilderness permit?
avatar Re: Backpacker camps and buses
June 09, 2020 11:51AM
Quote
FatFlatlander
There was one statement in the Yosemite re-opening which confused me a little. From the reopening FAQ, under the question "Are any areas of the park closed?":

Quote

Open with modifications:

Backpackers campgrounds are not open to people arriving in the park by bus (wilderness permit holders arriving by bus can stay in backpackers campgrounds)

I thought you always had to have a wilderness permit to stay in the backpacker campground. Did some exception exist pre-COVID where people arriving by bus could stay in the backpacking campground without a wilderness permit?

The rule has been there for quite some time. I remember seeing some earlier official NPS web pages mentioning it, but it was mentioned inconsistently. It's in the current description of the Backpackers Campgrounds.

Quote

https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/bpcamp.htm
Visitors arriving to Yosemite by bus, bicycle, or foot may also spend one night in each backpackers campground.

There's someone official about this in the Superintentent's Compendium of Regulations.

https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/management/upload/yosecompendium.pdf

However, this is really confusing because the statement says that the Backpackers Campgrounds won't be open to people arriving by bus but then says they will be allowed in parentheses. I think what they meant to say was that "wilderness permit holders arriving by bus can NORMALLY stay in backpackers campgrounds". This sounds like a rule meant to discourage crowding in the Backpackers Campgrounds. I've stayed there before, and it wasn't too crowded. However, I understand there are no real limits. They have designated campsites, but people pay per camper and can basically just crowd into the campsites when space is needed for more people. I can't really imagine a lot of people take advantage of the bus/bicycle/foot method.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/09/2020 05:32PM by y_p_w.
Re: Backpacker camps and buses
June 09, 2020 01:06PM
Thanks for the reference. I had never seen that bus/hiker/bicyclers were allowed to stay in the BP camps before.

And as a bonus, I now know how large a kite I can legally fly in Yosemite! : )
Re: Backpacker camps and buses
June 09, 2020 01:30PM
Quote
FatFlatlander
And as a bonus, I now know how large a kite I can legally fly in Yosemite! : )
Nice! Didn't know that they are so specific about it.

Btw got the confirmation email that TM campground will be closed for the season. Had a group site there for September and I can live without it. As you said, it's good to get some clarity
Re: Backpacker camps and buses
June 09, 2020 12:40PM
I think they might have thought about stating it explicitly since the people coming by bus do not need to buy a day use permit
avatar Re: Backpacker camps and buses
June 09, 2020 05:35PM
Quote
nwhkr
I think they might have thought about stating it explicitly since the people coming by bus do not need to buy a day use permit
It's only a vehicle permit. At other NPS sites where there's some sort of vehicle or parking reservations, someone walking in or on bicycle can typically get in without restriction.

However, I read it over again, and I misinterpreted what they meant. They're saying that wilderness permit holders can stay in the backpackers campground regardless of the method of entry. I wonder what the rules are on bicycles or motorcycles.
avatar Re: Backpacker camps and buses
June 09, 2020 05:45PM
I just wanted to clarify that it was always a backdoor way to stay in Yosemite without a reservation or waiting in line, as long as I remember. I think the entry ticket is supposed to be the method to prove it.

The wording is a bit confusing. I don't know exactly if it restricts those arriving by foot or bicycle. Entry by bicycle, foot, or horseback is allowed without a permit, but I'm not sure where a horse could be kept overnight now that the stables are gone.
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