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Permits Tuolumne Meadows

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Permits Tuolumne Meadows

Postby OzSwaggie » Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:30 am

Hi All

We've got a dramatic change of plan, as we are unable to complete our original end-to-end eight day trip. The new plan involves trying to initiate a couple of 3 - 4 day hikes starting at Tuolumne Meadows. Dates span 29July to 6 August. There are no reserved permits to be had at this late stage, so we're thinking about the "walkup" option. The information I've found so far has me confused, and I'm hoping someone can tell me from personal experience what actually happens on the ground!

The NPS site says that walkup permits are available after 11am. One person (on this website) says he always gets a TM walkup permit in the Valley, the day before, in the early afternoon (?). Other people talk about lining up at 4am to try to get a permit... but I'm not sure whether that is for the same day or the next day ...

Can any one advise - if we arrive on the YARTS bus at 10.30 - 10.45 in TMeadows permit centre, what are our chances of picking up a permit for that day or the next day?



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Re: Permits Tuolumne Meadows

Postby The Other Tom » Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:40 am

You don't need a permit for a day hike. Perhaps you're looking for a wilderness permit so you can camp somewhere?
Having said that, I've had good luck getting a walk up permit for the next day as late as 2-3 pm. It might not be for the trail head you want, but they are generally available

Another option is the ranger station in Mammoth (yarts goes there as well). Of course you won't get a Yosemite permits there, but you generally can easily get one for one of the many trail heads in that area.
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Re: Permits Tuolumne Meadows

Postby sparky » Sun Jul 14, 2013 8:04 am

Walk up permits are available as "same day" and "next day". To get a "same day" you get in line at 4am. You can get "next day" permits after 11am the day before your hike.

So you show up july 28th at 11am for your hike on july 29th. If you show up at 4am on july 28th for a permit to start on july 29th, you will wait until 11am.

Clear as mud?

What are your chances? You would need a crystal ball to find out. Lets just say I never make reservations and I have never had any siginifact issues
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True happiness is the absence of striving for happiness.
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Re: Permits Tuolumne Meadows

Postby maverick » Sun Jul 14, 2013 10:46 am

Getting next day permit on the date you indicated should should not be a problem, if
it were a Thurs or Fri then things would be different.
With that said, you wrote "day hikes" in your post, and for day hikes no permit are
required, but you will need a campsite at TM which is a whole different matter, so
please clarify whether you intend to day hike and camp, or do a backpacking trip
out of TM.
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Re: Permits Tuolumne Meadows

Postby tomba » Sun Jul 14, 2013 11:25 am

I think OzSwaggie meant 4-day hikes, not 4 day-hikes.

When the wilderness office opens in the morning, especially up to a couple of days before weekend, all south-bound trails in Tuolumne Meadows region are likely to be full or almost full (1 spot left), with the exception of Mono/Parker Pass and possibly the two cross-country trails (Budd & Nelson). Of northbound trails, Young Lks via Dog Lk fills up before Y.L. via Glen Aulin. Murphy Ck is easiest to get.

Getting permits when the office opens got harder when they allowed getting permits at 11 the day before the hike. :(
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Re: Permits Tuolumne Meadows

Postby BigMan » Sun Jul 14, 2013 12:07 pm

If you don't mind some easy cross country, you can get a same day permit for Reymann or Nelson Lake via the Elizabeth Lake trail. From Reymann, you can cross country over to the Rafferty Creek trail.
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Re: Permits Tuolumne Meadows

Postby ncalsurfer » Mon Jul 15, 2013 11:12 am

I just returned from my Tuolume Meadows -> Devil's Postpile hike. Our plan was to arrive to the Meadows at 8am on Tuesday to get a permit to leave Wednesday. When we got there the Ranger Station was already open and there were a number of wilderness permits for various trails still available for that same day. Had our permit in hand by 8:30am and were on the trail by 9:30am! I'm not sure how they decide what time to open the Ranger Station, but it seems they do open earlier than 11am on some days. Good luck!
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Re: Permits Tuolumne Meadows

Postby OzSwaggie » Tue Jul 16, 2013 12:45 am

Thanks everyone that is very encouraging! Three days till we fly out from Australia, my heart is there already! Thanks again to everyone who has given so much helpful advice and suggestions while we are planning our 2013 visit to the Sierra! :)
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