Yosemite National Park Announces Pilot Program for Day-Use Parking Reservations
Parking reservations in Yosemite Valley available for two upcoming weekends
Yosemite national Park, June 2016 – Yosemite National Park announces a pilot program where visitors will be able to reserve a guaranteed parking space on two upcoming weekends. Visitors to Yosemite National Park will be able to reserve a parking space in Yosemite Valley for the weekend of June 25-26 and July 2-4. 2016. The reserved parking program would benefit visitors by ensuring access to a parking space if they arrive before11:00 A.M. The parking area is located adjacent to shuttle bus stops that will encourage visitors to use the park’s alternative transportation system.
Reservations for 150 parking spaces each day during the upcoming weekends can be made beginning Saturday, June 11. Reservations can be made through Recreation.gov at www.recreation.gov or by calling 1-877-444-6777. There is no charge for the day-use parking reservations, but a reservation fee of $1.50 will be required per transaction. All transactions are final and no refunds or cancellations for those arriving after 11:00 A.M. The designated parking lot is directly west of Yosemite Valley Lodge and South of Camp 4.
These reservations are for day-use parking spaces in Yosemite Valley on the above specified dates. The pilot program is intended to offer the availability of the day-use guaranteed parking spaces and does not affect visitors entering the park who do not have a parking reservation.
Yosemite National Park has been extremely busy this spring, especially on weekends. Visitors in personal vehicles arriving mid-morning through mid-day should expect extensive delays getting into and moving about the park, particularly in Yosemite Valley and Glacier Point. Visitors are urged to enter the park before9:00 a.m. or after 6:00 p.m. in order to avoid traffic congestion and difficulty finding parking. The park also asks visitors to consider using alternative transportation, such as the Yosemite Area Regional Transportation System (YARTS) buses, which serve the park from several gateway communities.
A pilot parking reservation system was suggested under several alternatives for the Merced Wild and Scenic River Comprehensive Management Planwhich became final in 2014. Additionally, the park has engaged with state and local representatives as well as gateway communities to discuss the pilot program. The park received overwhelming support for the pilot program.
The goal of the pilot day-use reservation program is to ensure that all Yosemite Valley parking spaces are utilized to provide maximum availability, encourage visitors to park once and use available free transit to enjoy Yosemite Valley, reduce visitor’s frustration, and increase visitor’s satisfaction. After the pilot program is completed, the park will evaluate the effectiveness of the program as it relates to improving park operations and in improving visitor satisfaction. Based on the results, the park may extend the opportunity for day-use parking reservations throughout the remaining summer season to include Saturdays, Sundays, and holiday weekends.
Yosemite National Park celebrated its 125th Anniversary last year and is currently celebrating its Centennial Anniversary with the National Park Service. The park welcomes over four million visitors from all over the world each year and serves as a strong economic engine for the region and local communities. Yosemite National Park generates $535 million in economic benefit to the local region and directly supports 6,261 jobs. The park is home to Yosemite Falls, the tallest waterfall in North America, iconic rock formations such as Half Dome and El Capitan, approximately 90 different mammal species, and over 1,500 plant species.
Source: Yosemite National Park News