Wilderness Permit Reservations
To make a reservation, you will need to know the name the permit will be under, mailing address, daytime telephone number, number of people, number of stock (horses, mules, llamas), start and end dates, beginning and ending trailheads, principal destination (to help clarify trailhead), method of payment ($5 plus $5/person): credit card, check, or money order. You may only begin your wilderness trip on the start date and at the trailhead indicated on your wilderness permit. Please plan your trip before you make a reservation. It is your responsibility to research trails and trail conditions to decide which trip is right for you and your group. Park rangers will not plan your trip for you.
Reservations are now available up to 26 weeks (182 days) in advance when the wilderness permit reservation office is open (typically, late November through September; this year, the reservation office will reopen on December 1, 2014).
Note: Due to very high demand, approximately 90% to 95% of all John Muir Trail through-hike permit applications are denied. On a typical day, the park receives between 300 to 500 reservation requests and sometimes over 600. Of those requests, approximately 80% to 90% are for the John Muir Trail while the other 10% to 20% are for all other routes in the park. The number of requests is more than double than that of last year.
Three Ways to Make a Reservation
Please complete this reservation form [324 KB PDF] on your computer, then print and fax it to 209/372-0739. (You can fax 24 hours/day, seven days/week.) For detailed instructions on how to fill out the form please see this instruction sheet [205 KB PDF]. Do not email this form (never send credit card information by email).
You may send a fax intended for the next day beginning at noon (however, there is no advantage to sending a fax at noon compared to 7 am, other than what is convenient for you, since all faxes and letters are sorted randomly). Faxes (and letters) received by 7:30 am are processed before phone calls. Faxes received during business hours are processed on first-come, first-served basis along with phone calls.
If you provide a legible email address, you will receive an email within one to two business days stating whether your request was confirmed or denied. If you do not provide an email address, it may take up to two weeks to receive a confirmation or denial letter by mail. If you would like to request a reservation for a departure date within the next two weeks, it is best to apply by phone.
Please complete and print the reservation form [324 KB PDF] (For detailed instructions on how to fill out the form please see this instruction sheet [205 KB PDF]), or send a letter with the information requested above, along with payment, to:
PO Box 545
Yosemite, CA, 95389.
Only apply once for each request: If you apply twice for the same request, you will be charged a non-refundable, non-transferable processing fee for both reservations.
If your itinerary will include hiking to Half Dome, please be sure to specify this when you make your reservation request. Half Dome permits have a separate quota and additional fee.
If space is available within the same season, you can request a change to your existing reservation's date or trailhead for an additional processing fee of $5. If you have questions regarding your reservation or would like to make changes to an existing reservation, please call 209/372-0740. We are unable to correspond by email or fax. Processing fees are non-refundable and non-transferable.