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20349
California

Magical Yosemite With Your Grandchild: Trains, Gold & Robots

Create lasting memories on a uniquely Californian adventure with your grandchild as you ride a steam engine, pan for gold, construct robots and learn the story of Yosemite.
Rating (4.75)
Program No. 20349RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,399 / ADULT
999 / CHILD
California

Magical Yosemite With Your Grandchild: Trains, Gold & Robots

Create lasting memories on a uniquely Californian adventure with your grandchild as you ride a steam engine, pan for gold, construct robots and learn the story of Yosemite.
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,399 / ADULT
999 / CHILD
Length
6 days
Rating (4.75)
Starts at
1,399 / ADULT
999 / CHILD
Program No. 20349RJ

Your well-being is our #1 priority

To make your experience as safe as possible, we require all participants to be fully vaccinated. See our Safety Roadmap

Enroll with Confidence

We want your Road Scholar learning adventure to be something to look forward to—not worry about. Learn more

Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
climate
Plan ahead.
What kind of weather can you expect? Take a look!
itinerary
Please Note:
The itinerary for this program is different on certain dates.
Age 8 - 12
ROOMING OPTION PRICING
The figures below indicate the rooming options available.
DATES
Jul 10 - Jul 15, 2022
Per Adult
1,399
Per Child
999
Select
Itinerary Note

Yosemite National Park will be closing Glacier Point for a road rehabilitation project in 2022, no hikes or excursions to Glacier Point or its surrounding areas will be scheduled during this program.

+ More
Jul 10 - Jul 15, 2022
1,399
/ Adult
999
/ Child
1,399
/ Adult
999
/ Child
1,699
/ Adult
999
/ Child
SOLD OUT
Itinerary Note

Yosemite National Park will be closing Glacier Point for a road rehabilitation project in 2022, no hikes or excursions to Glacier Point or its surrounding areas will be scheduled during this program.

+ More
Jul 17 - Jul 22, 2022
Per Adult
1,399
Per Child
999
Select
Itinerary Note

Yosemite National Park will be closing Glacier Point for a road rehabilitation project in 2022, no hikes or excursions to Glacier Point or its surrounding areas will be scheduled during this program.

+ More
Jul 17 - Jul 22, 2022
1,399
/ Adult
999
/ Child
1,399
/ Adult
999
/ Child
1,699
/ Adult
999
/ Child
Limited Space
Itinerary Note

Yosemite National Park will be closing Glacier Point for a road rehabilitation project in 2022, no hikes or excursions to Glacier Point or its surrounding areas will be scheduled during this program.

+ More
Jun 18 - Jun 23, 2023
Per Adult
1,549
Per Child
1,249
Select
Jun 18 - Jun 23, 2023
1,549
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
1,549
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
1,899
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
Select Date
Jun 25 - Jun 30, 2023
Per Adult
1,549
Per Child
1,249
Select
Jun 25 - Jun 30, 2023
1,549
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
1,549
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
1,899
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
Select Date
Jul 9 - Jul 14, 2023
Per Adult
1,549
Per Child
1,249
Select
Jul 9 - Jul 14, 2023
1,549
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
1,549
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
1,899
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
Select Date
Jul 16 - Jul 21, 2023
Per Adult
1,549
Per Child
1,249
Select
Jul 16 - Jul 21, 2023
1,549
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
1,549
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
1,899
/ Adult
1,249
/ Child
Select Date

At a Glance

The best stories are the ones told around a camp fire – roast a marshmallow beside your grandchild and hear stories of Yosemite National Park and the pioneers who first explored this great wilderness. On this epic adventure, you’ll use your imagination to become a park ranger, prospector, train conductor and engineer as you pan for gold, ride a steam engine and build an underwater robot. Plus, hike through the magnificent domes, granite cliffs, meadows and Sequoia groves of Yosemite as you get to know this beautiful national park.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walk up to two miles daily on varied terrain. Elevations of 3,100-7,000 feet.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 13 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Board a steam engine train for a ride through the sugar pine forest to learn about the gold rush and the area’s logging history.
  • Explore Yosemite from the spectacular cascading waters of Bridalveil Fall to the giant sequoia trees — the oldest and largest species on earth!
  • Head to the Baker Swim Complex to learn to create and manipulate a real underwater robot, and spend some swim time in the pool yourself!

General Notes

Program is for grandchildren ages 8-12.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Galen Clark: Yosemite Guardian
by Shirley Sargent
Sierra Nevada Natural History: An Illustrated Handbook.
by Tracy I Storer
My First Summer in the Sierra
by Muir, John.
The first of John Muir's books. This inspirational book allows the reader to understand John Muir's desire to protect and preserve Yosemite.
A Sierra Club Naturalist's Guide to the Sierra Nevada
by Stephen Whitney
Little Ty Cooney and the Big Yosemite Race
by Steven Riley
Camping With The President
by Ginger Wadsworth
History of the Sierra Nevada
by Francis Farqhar
Who Pooped in the Park? Yosemite Scat and Tracks for Kids
by Gary D Robson
My Yosemite: A Guite for Young Adventurers
by Mike Graf
Gloryland: A Novel
by Shelton Johnson
The Geologic Story of Yosemite National Park
by King N Huber
Yosemite: The Complete Guide: Yosemite National Park
by James Kaiser
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6 days
5 nights
14 meals
5 B 4 L 5 D
DAY
1
Check-in, Registration, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Oakhurst
D
Episcopal Conference Center Oakhurst (ECCO)

Activity note: Check-in from 3:00 p.m. You are welcome to arrive early if you wish, but you may not be able to check in until the indicated time. Walking about 1 mile around the camp, foothills of Sierra Nevada Mountains; uneven terrain, inclines.

Afternoon: Program Registration 3:00-5:00 p.m. After you check in and have your room assignment, join us at the Road Scholar table in the main meeting room to register with the program staff, get any updated information, and confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arrive late, please locate your Group Leader and let them know you have arrived. We will then gather for a get-acquainted social hour. Orientation. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. We will review COVID-19 protocols and will adhere to local COVID-19 guidelines and requirements throughout the program. This is a Road Scholar Grandparent program. Grandparents are responsible for their grandchildren. If/when separate age group activities are conducted concurrently, program staff will supervise. Minors are never to be left unsupervised. This is also a Road Scholar Retreats program. Programming at Retreat locations includes opportunities for light morning exercise, interaction with members of the local community, a farm-to-table meal, and evening entertainment. Periods in the schedule designated as “Free time” and “At leisure” offer opportunities to do what you like and make your experience even more meaningful and memorable according to your personal preferences. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/current conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. Next, we’ll set out on foot with our Group Leader to explore the camp, see the recreation fields, hiking trails, game room, and much more. We’ll end up in a classroom where we’ll play a short game that will help us get to know each other.

Dinner: In Lyles Hall at the camp.

Evening: We will gather for an introductory video on Yosemite with a group discussion. Continue getting to know your fellow Road Scholars, settle in, and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.

DAY
2
Tunnel View, Bridalveil Fall, Nature Walk, Afternoon Swim
Oakhurst
B,L,D
Episcopal Conference Center Oakhurst (ECCO)

Activity note: Light exercise available prior to breakfast (walking, gardening, yoga, etc.). Getting on/off a bus; driving about 70 miles throughout the day; approximately 3 hours total riding time; country roads. Walking about 3-4 miles throughout the day; mostly flat, paved, or graveled paths. Bring swimwear and towel for afternoon pool activity.

Breakfast: Lyles Hall. We will also prepare sack lunches from a variety of choices to take with us.

Morning: This program is staffed with both a Study Leader and a Group Leader. Both will provide educational content; the Group Leader will also deal with logistics. We will ride to Yosemite and explore the Valley with our Study Leader. We’ll begin at Tunnel View, a picturesque vista right off the road that serves as the first view of Yosemite Valley through the south entrance. Riding on, we’ll reach Bridalveil Fall and set out on a short hike with our Study Leader. We’ll also see other historical sites in the Valley en route to Yosemite Valley Lodge.

Lunch: In the amphitheater area of Yosemite Valley Lodge, we’ll have our sack lunches.

Afternoon: Afternoon Next, we’ll take some time to cool off, relax, and have some summer fun at the swimming pool at Yosemite Valley Lodge. We’ll return to the camp in the mid-afternoon.

Dinner: Lyles Hall.

Evening: Each evening, we’ll gather for a group activity, such as a performance by local musicians or artists, a live animal or historical presentation, or lectures on the human and cultural history of the area, our presenters are all experts in their field and love to share their knowledge of Yosemite with others.

DAY
3
Sugar Pine Railroad, Make Underwater Robots
Oakhurst
B,L,D
Episcopal Conference Center Oakhurst (ECCO)

Activity note: Light exercise available prior to breakfast (walking, gardening, yoga, etc.). Getting on/off a bus; driving about 25 miles throughout the day, approximately 45 minutes of riding time plus stops. Walking about 2.5 miles throughout the day; uneven, unpaved terrain. Bring swimwear and towel for afternoon pool activity.

Breakfast: Lyles Hall. We will prepare sack lunches to take with us.

Morning: We will board a bus and take a short drive up to the Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad. A railroad staff expert will teach us how to pan for gold while also telling us about the California Gold Rush. We’ll also hop aboard a steam engine train for a ride with our railroad expert as we learn about the area’s fascinating logging history.

Lunch: At the Railroad, we’ll have our sack lunches.

Afternoon: We’ll jump back on the bus and ride to the Baker Swim Complex. With a local expert, we’ll learn about robotics from our instructor, then experiment with how to make and maneuver underwater robots! Before we go, we’ll have some time to enjoy a swim in the experiment “tank” — a swimming pool.

Dinner: Lyles Hall.

Evening: We’ll gather for a fun group activity at the camp!

DAY
4
Yosemite National Park Free Day
Oakhurst
B,L,D
Episcopal Conference Center Oakhurst (ECCO)

Activity note: Light exercise available prior to breakfast (walking, gardening, yoga, etc.). Getting on/off a bus; driving about 70 miles throughout the day, approximately 3 hours riding time; country roads. Walking and other activities during free time according to personal choice.

Breakfast: Lyles Hall. We will also make sack lunches to take with us.

Morning: We will board the bus and ride along beautiful, winding mountain roads to Yosemite National Park, where we’ll gaze at the woodland terrain through the conifer forest that drops down into glacially-carved Yosemite Valley. We will be dropped off at Shuttle Stop #7. The day is free to explore independently, to see and do what interests each of us most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. You might like to visit areas such as the Ansel Adams Gallery or the Indian Village.

Lunch: Enjoy sack lunches wherever you wish. From the National Park Service: “Picnic areas are available throughout Yosemite on a first-come, first-served basis (reservations are not available) from dawn to dusk. Unless otherwise noted, all picnic areas in Yosemite have picnic tables, vault toilets, and trash and recycling receptacles.”

Afternoon: Continue to enjoy free time before returning to Shuttle Stop #7 for return to ECCO in the afternoon.

Dinner: Lyles Hall.

Evening: Evening performance.

DAY
5
Giant Sequoias, Southern Yosemite, Campfire
Oakhurst
B,L,D
Episcopal Conference Center Oakhurst (ECCO)

Activity note: Light exercise available prior to breakfast (walking, gardening, yoga, etc.). Getting on/off a bus; driving about 35 miles throughout the day; approximately 2 hours total riding time; country roads. Walking about 3-4 miles, approximately 2 hours; paved and unpaved rocky surfaces. Elevation gain about 400 feet.

Breakfast: Lyles Hall. We will also make sack lunches to take with us.

Morning: We will board the bus and ride to the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias. There, we’ll set out on a walking field trip and explore with our Study Leader who will provide commentary as we go. These are some of the largest and oldest trees on earth!

Lunch: In the forest among the enormous Sequoias, we’ll have our sack lunches.

Afternoon: Next, we’ll reboard our bus and ride to Yosemite National Park for a hike with our Study Leader. All the while aboard the bus and on the trail, our Study Leader will provide commentary on the surrounding area and its history. Bring your camera! We’ll ride back to camp after our field trip.

Dinner: Lyles Hall. Share favorite experiences with new Road Scholar friends during our farewell dinner.

Evening: We’ll spend some time with fellow Road Scholars and roast marshmallows around a campfire together. Prepare for check-out and departure in the morning.

DAY
6
Wrap-Up Slide Show, Program Concludes
Oakhurst
B

Activity note: Light exercise available prior to breakfast (walking, gardening, yoga, etc.). Camp check-out 9:00 a.m.

Breakfast: Lyles Hall.

Morning: We’ll gather for one more group session to share a photo slide show of our adventures together with new Road Scholar friends. This concludes our program. If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Don’t forget to join our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram. Best wishes for all your journeys!






Important registration tip:
If you want to attend the live lecture, please do not wait until the last minute to enroll.
If you enroll after a lecture is complete, we’ll send you a recording of the event.