The drive to Yosemite National Park is about 275 miles, approximately 5 1/2 hours.The walk into El Capitan Meadow is on a dirt path in a flat meadow and the distance is about 100-150 feet. The paved trail from Bridalveil Fall parking area to base of waterfall is 1/2 mile roundtrip with approximately 80 foot elevation gain.
Breakfast buffet in hotel restaurant offers a selection of eggs, bacon, sausage, breakfast potatoes, hot and cold cereals, fruit, yogurts, and fresh baked breakfast breads, plus assorted juices, coffee, tea, and water.
Once we check out of the hotel, we will board our motorcoach for Yosemite National Park which is about a 5 hour drive from Brisbane, CA. Yosemite is one of America's most beautiful and most visited national parks. Designated as the country’s third national park in October 1890, Yosemite Valley has been preserved since 1864. For the first time in history, Congress set land aside for the preservation and recreation for all people, and the national park concept was born. There will be one rest stop en route in California's Central Valley.
At The Ahwahnee Hotel, we’ll have a plated 3-course lunch with salad, entrée, and dessert. This hotel opened in 1927 and is a major attraction for Yosemite visitors. Its dining room has a 34-foot-high beamed ceiling, large sugar pine trestles, granite pillars, and floor-to-ceiling windows.
Our on-board instructor will lead us on a field trip through Yosemite Valley which is world-famous for its impressive waterfalls, cliffs and unusual rock formations. We will learn about the valley’s glacial past which carved the grand walls we see today. The first stop is El Capitan Meadow. From the meadow, use your binoculars and scan for climbers on El Cap, one of the world’s most popular climbs. Rising more than 3,000 feet above the Valley floor, it is the largest granite monolith in the world. The first ascent on El Capitan was made by Warren Harding in 1958 and records continue to be broken with Alex Honnold free soloing the rock in 2017. Our second stop is Bridalveil Fall for a walk to the base of the falls. Plunging 620 feet, Bridalveil thunders in the spring but during the rest of the year its light, swaying flow resembles a “bridal veil.” Our last stop takes us to Sentinel Bridge with a classic view of Half Dome framed by pine trees. We will check-in to our hotel after our exploration of the Yosemite Valley floor.
Your group leader will give you a voucher to use at any establishment in Yosemite for dinner. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions or you could use the suggestions listed in your program folder. You have a variety of dining options at Yosemite Valley Lodge, The Ahwahnee Hotel, Yosemite Village, or Half Dome Village.
At Leisure. There are many opportunities to enjoy the park after dark on your own. Use the “Yosemite Guide” to find out what programs are being offered, programs offered by the National Park are free of charge. https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/guide.htm Programs at the Yosemite Theater require a ticket that you can purchase the day of at the visitor center bookstore or on-line at https://yosemite.org/experience/theater/.