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Seasons of Magic in Yosemite: Splendor in the Sierra Nevada

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Road Scholar
Program #1197RJ
6 Days | 5 Nights
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
See all of our Most Popular programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Sharon from Longmont, CO Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 05/11/14 - 05/16/14
Interested in nature? Beauty of same. Preservation of same. History of same. This is your program.

Lynn from Bridgewater, VT Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 04/20/14 - 04/25/14
This program demonstrated the "value" of combining a learning experience with travel. Without the didactics the experience would not have been anywhere near as exciting. The didactics alone would have been similarly "cold". The combination was "awesome".

Edward from Northbrook, IL Number of programs attended: 8
Date attended: 04/20/14 - 04/25/14
This was a wonderful national park program with good accommodations and excellent food. I can't add to what everyone else says about Shirley; she is a top-notch naturalist and instructor.

Lenore from Arlington Hts, IL Number of programs attended: 9
Date attended: 03/30/14 - 04/04/14
If Shirley Spencer is the program instructor, sign up now.

Hal from Indianapolis, IN Number of programs attended: 6
Date attended: 03/30/14 - 04/04/14
Try to visit Josemite when Shirley Spenser is the primary presenter. She is so good she makes the whole program fantastic.

Beth from Port Townsend, WA Number of programs attended: 16
Date attended: 03/30/14 - 04/04/14
This Road Scholar program was memorable . Gayle was constantly pleasant and supportive . The kitchen staff outdid themselves in good food and service. Enthusiastic kudos for Shirley Spencer our instructor and guide. She was very knowledgeable , a gifted lecturer , fun and funny with her animal sounds and expression ! Her passion for the critters and sites of Yosemite was contagious. How can we bottle her energy ?Truly an expert lecturer and advocate for the environ- ment , kind and multitalented. We will strongly recommend this program to our friends.

Patt from San Ramon, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 03/30/14 - 04/04/14
I knew it would be a beautiful week to engage and learn more about Yosemite and the Sierra Nevadas. The experience surpassed my expectations. Shirley Spencer, the naturalist-teacher extraordinaire, presents classes introduced with visuals and hands on opportunities that are enhanced by her astounding personal experiences. I was continually eager for the next class, the next day and the next field trip. This was my first Road Scholar trip, and I will do many more. The facility is placed in a beautiful setting and their staff were accommodating and helpful. I met people who had stories to tell and experiences to share. I know I made a good choice.

Ruth from Redding, CA Number of programs attended: 7
Date attended: 03/30/14 - 04/04/14
This will be a program like no other because of the instructor, Shirley Spencer, who basically does the whole thing. She has the experience and knowledge, friendliness, and a unique way of presenting, that entrances everyone. She does 2 1/2 days of lectures and 3 hours on bus trips, and keeps your interest continually. The accommodations are adequate; the park is spectacular.

George from Rochester, NY Number of programs attended: 20
Date attended: 10/20/13 - 10/25/13
Every American should see and participate in the phenomenal beauty of Yosemite. The current guide (Shirley Spencer) is a phenomenon herself, not to be missed!

Marilyn from Rancho Cordova, CA Number of programs attended: 8
Date attended: 10/20/13 - 10/25/13
The time spent learning about and visiting Yosemite will be the best gift you can give to yourself or your family. Shirley Spencer will amaze and delight you with her vast knowledge and expert instructional classes. This is a MUST trip for all. Put it at the top of your "bucket list".

Joyce from Monument, CO Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 10/20/13 - 10/25/13
Shirley Spencer is an exceptional presenter and guide! The rooms at ECCO are small and Spartan but clean. The food was not good and will hopefully improve. Yosemite was wonderful!

Patricia from Berkley, MI Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 10/20/13 - 10/25/13
The program we chose for our first Road Scholar trip was Yosemite in the fall. It was advertised as a magical season and it was a magical program. We always wanted to visit Yosemite and are so happy that we did it with Road Scholar. Our enjoyment was multiplied by the knowledge we gained from the program. Highly recommend this program!

James from Colorado Spgs, CO Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 09/29/13 - 10/04/13
This was an excellent Roads Scholar activity when Yosemite is available.

Steve from Deland, FL Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 09/29/13 - 10/04/13
You will never see the sights and splendors that Yosemite has to offer with a better guide than Shirley Spencer. Great experience!

Amber from Redlands, CA Number of programs attended: 11
Date attended: 09/29/13 - 10/04/13
Shirley Spencer is a phenomenal instructor. A.C.

Wilhelmina from Sunnyvale, CA Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 08/18/13 - 08/23/13
Yosemite is a magical place indeed. The program covered all the areas of interest in the park, along with informative instruction. A very good combination for a great experience.

Jessie from Napa, CA Number of programs attended: 62
Date attended: 08/18/13 - 08/23/13
This program was so enjoyable I attended it for a second time after having gone two years ago.! I was not disappointed. The experience of visiting the park--two days- the lectures, and the accomodations and food are maintained at a high level. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to visit and learn about Yosemite Park.

Mary from Los Alamitos, CA Number of programs attended: 12
Date attended: 06/09/13 - 06/14/13
...good introduction to Yosemite. Lots of good information in a very interesting presentation. Anytime you catch me sitting on the edge of my chair fascinated by local geology, you know it has to be good.

Nancy from Sonoma, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 06/09/13 - 06/14/13
One less item on my bucket list. Thoroughly enjoyed every moment! This was the perfect way for a senior to visit Yosemite.

Richard from Marina, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 06/09/13 - 06/14/13
If you want an incredible learning experience, visit Yosemite with the "Splendor in the Sierra Nevada" program.

Peter from Kingwood, TX Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 05/19/13 - 05/24/13
Just returned from Yosemite national park with Roads Scholar! I hesitate to pay a tour price to see a park I can see free with my senior pas;?however this trip was worth every penny! Shirley Spencer was our lecturer/ guide and she makes the tour! We spent two days in class learning about the parks and I was hanging onto every word she said! We had some down time; so if you have a car it is easier to use free time to see area .

Thomas from Lebanon, IN Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 04/21/13 - 04/26/13
This program is well planned and very enjoyable. Shirley, our guide, is a treasure. Seeing Yosemite through her eyes and with her passion was fantastic.

Fred from Ashburn, VA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 01/20/13 - 01/25/13
Some people think the only time to visit Yosemite is during the summer months. However, that's when people come to the valley in droves, and traffic and sightseeing can be problematic. Yosemite in the winter is another experience altogether. One can see the waterfalls and their "snow cones." The sound of avalanches can be heard throughout the valley. Snow glistens off trees, spotting the tops of the granite monuments, and the winter quiet at times is pierced only by the sound of rushing water. And the crowds are virtually non-existent. There is ample opportunity to photograph (Ansel Adams himself made wonderful winter portraits of the park in winter), and with a knowledgeable instructor, the entire region can come alive with history, geology, botany, biology and humanity. Come see Yosemite in winter!

Tamara from Lancaster, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 11/26/12 - 12/01/12
Wonderful program. Would do again. The program people were terrific. The attendees were interesting and in the mood to learn and have a good time. Our group totaled 10 and it was nice to be part of a smaller more intimate "tribe". Lodging and meals were good. Had a fantastic time and learned a lot. Enough free time to be more active individually as desired. That was nice.

Edward from Daytona Beach, FL Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 11/26/12 - 12/01/12
All of our classmates really enjoyed Yosemite, and one classmate said she could listen to our instructor, Shirley Spencer, "forever." My wife and I agree. This was my third Road Scholar experience - all excellent, but this one "over the top" excellent. September and October would be wonderful times to see Yosemite and have a great Road Scholar experience.

Sandra from Houston, TX Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 09/30/12 - 10/05/12
This was my first Road Scholar trip. It was very well organized and attended by congenial and interesting people that I enjoyed meeting. The lectures and information were outstanding.

Anthony from Eugene, OR Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 09/16/12 - 09/20/12
We would urge everyone to put this Yosemite experience on their "bucket list!" Our docent Shirley Spencer is a jewel and makes this program inspirational as well as informative!!

Louise from Carlsbad, NM Number of programs attended: 10
Date attended: 09/23/12 - 09/28/12
Seasons of Magic in Yosemite gets a 10+ It is on the top of my list For enjoyment and education. I thought since it was easy we may just sit in a class room - but we did get in some walking in the park. I would like to go back. (the weather was beautiful)Sept.23-28

Stephen from Portland, ME Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/16/12 - 09/20/12
Yosemite, which has been on my "bucket list" for several years, proved to be an exciting and educational experience, which I would recommend to anyone who appreciates the wonders of God's creation.

Raymond from Portland, CT Number of programs attended: 16
Date attended: 08/19/12 - 08/24/12
The program on Yosemite was outstanding---one of the best of the dozen or so Road Scholar programs we have done. The conference center is a bit remote but was excellent and was conveniently located near the Park. Our main instructor was outstanding--well experienced as a Park Ranger Interpreter, and was well organized and most interesting. The evening optional programs added a lot to the program. Overll it was a great experience and excellent value for the money. Highly recommended!!

Philip from Upland, CA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 08/19/12 - 08/24/12
We enjoyed our first time in Yosemite National Park. Since it had not been a rainy Spring, some of the falls were very small & some were completely dried up. I would recommend taking this program in the Spring after lots of rain. It is a gorgeous park and our tour guide was outstanding. We learned so much about the area which made this trip very worthwhile.

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"Bachelor and Three Graces" Uploaded By: Marilyn
"Bachelor and Three Graces" Uploaded By: Marilyn

"The Pond at ECCO" Uploaded By: Marilyn

Uploaded By: Paul

"Mirror Image " Uploaded By: Sandra

"Giant sequoia roots - wow!" Uploaded By: Sandra

"Glacier Point not to be missed!" Uploaded By: Lou

"Shirley Spencer is captivating! Makes it worth the trip!" Uploaded By: Lou

"ECCO Lodge main room" Uploaded By: Larry

"River view" Uploaded By: Larry

"El Capitan" Uploaded By: Larry

"Meadow walkway" Uploaded By: Larry

"Meadow view" Uploaded By: Larry

"Swinging Bridge view" Uploaded By: Larry

"El Capitan and Half Dome from Tunnel View" Uploaded By: Larry

"El Capitan August 2012" Uploaded By: Philip

"Tunnel View of Yosemite August 2012" Uploaded By: Philip

"Grizzly Giant in Mariposa Grove August 2012" Uploaded By: Philip

"Mariposa Grove Museum August 2012" Uploaded By: Philip

"Half Dome from Glacier Point August 2012" Uploaded By: Philip

"Yosemite in August 2012" Uploaded By: Philip

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Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

at no additional cost on this date ...
5 nights of accommodations
15 meals: 5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 5 dinners
5 Expert-led lectures
2 Field trips
3 Performances


Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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