Campground Reservations FAQ
Why is it so hard to get a reservation?
While it may be hard to believe, it's difficult to get a reservation simply because the demand is extremely high. Reservation availability decreases rapidly once reservations become available because the website has a virtually unlimited capacity to accept reservation requests from the thousands of people submitting them. (In contrast, when the system was run primarily by telephone, there were a limited number of phone lines available.) There have been very limited cases of people misusing the reservation system, and we've taken steps to eliminate this (and actively continue to monitor and eliminate this misuse). However, even at its peak, misuse of the online reservation system accounted for a very small fraction of reservation transactions.
I made a reservation for an RV nonelectric campsite but only have a tent. Can I still use the campsite?
Some campsites are listed on recreation.gov as "RV nonelectric." This means the campsite is best suited for RVs and trailers. While you aren't required to use an RV in one of these campsites, they are listed as RV only because they generally do not have adequate or level space to pitch a tent. If you arrive and find that the campsite doesn't work for you and/or your tent, we will not be able to move you to a different campsite. You should always read the site alerts and book a site that is appropriate for the equipment you will be camping in. If you have questions about a specific campsite, you can call the campground office at the phone number listed in your reservation.
I made a reservation for a tent-only nonelectric campsite but have an RV or other vehicle I sleep in. Can I still use the campsite?
RVs are not allowed in tent-only campsites. These sites only have space for tents and, in many cases, the parking is a short distance away from the campsite (and you're required to camp in the campsite). You should always read the site alerts and book a site that is appropriate for the equipment you will be camping in. If you arrive with different equipment than allowed in the site you reserved, we will not be able to accommodate you.
I made a reservation for a standard nonelectric campsite. What does this mean?
Most reservable campsites in Yosemite are listed on recreation.gov as "standard nonelectric." These campsites are suitable for both tents and RVs (or a combination of both). But be sure to read the site alerts and book a site that will accommodate your specific equipment. Many large RVs and trailers will not fit into many standard campsites.
In May and June, why are so many campsites in North Pines and Lower Pines not available for reservation?
Spring floods are common in Yosemite Valley in May and June, with portions of Lower Pines, and, especially, North Pines Campgrounds becoming inundated. As a result, we don't make the affected campsites available for reservation until we are sure the river will be at a safe level. Depending on conditions, these campsites may be available for reservation a few weeks (less likely) or just a few days (more likely) in advance via recreation.gov. If water levels are high, these sites may only be available in the park on a first-come, first-served, daily basis.
We have more than two vehicles arriving at our campsite. Where can we park the additional vehicles?
Up to two motorized vehicles are allowed in each campsite (not including trailers), as long as all the wheels on both vehicles (and trailer, if any) can fit on the parking pad without obstructing traffic. Each campground has overflow parking available either at the campground (usually near the campground entrance) or nearby.
When can I check in? Can I check in after hours? What if I'm late?
Checkin (and checkout) time is noon. If you arrive after the ranger has left the campground, proceed directly to the campsite indicated on your reservation. (At Tuolumne Meadows Campground, check the kiosk to find out which campsite you're assigned to.) You must check in at the campground kiosk or the reservation office the next morning to ensure we know you're here. If you plan to arrive later than the arrival date on your reservation, please call the campground office number listed on your reservation paperwork. If we don't hear from you by noon after the first night on your reservation, and you have not checked in, you will forfeit your entire reservation. The person whose name is on the reservation must check in with valid photo identification.
How can I cancel or change my reservation?
Call 888/448-1474 to change or cancel your reservation. You can also log in to recreation.gov to cancel your reservation.