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Old 01-21-2013, 10:54 PM   #16
elaine amj
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After a lot of hemming and hawing and reading a lot of trip reports, I think we will skip Yosemite this trip. We love Disney and would really like 5 days there, especially given the crowds will be insane. Also, too much driving just isn't hugely appealing for this particular trip. I just can't see us driving 6-7 hours, then expecting to drive 2-3 hrs per day to sightsee. Not on this trip. We will do Yosemite - but likely some years down the road when my kids are older and can appreciate the stunning scenery more. Plus, it adds substantially to our trip costs.

On top of that, for some reason I'm mostly excited about the trip reports I read of Kings Canyon/Sequoia. I REALLY, REALLY want to see giant trees. Plus we prefer hiking away from the crowds. I really don't care for hiking on crowded trails. Kings Canyon/Sequoia will be much less crowded and it sounds like there are some beautiful hikes there. i've read quite a lot of reviews that say with a bit of hiking, many of the vistas are almost as beautiful as what you get at Yosemite. Hume Lake's activities sound right up our family's alley. My kids will adore the day camp and I'm happy canoeing for hours at a time. DH likes the all-inclusive feel of the place.

So it will be 5 days at Disney, 3 days at Hume Lake, then travel back to LAX for our flight.

Thank you all so much for your thoughts, opinions, and perspectives!
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Old 01-21-2013, 11:52 PM   #17
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I think you will like Hume Lake and Kings Canyon.Hume Lake is where the biggest Christian church in our town sends the youth groups. The kids love their time there.
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Old 01-22-2013, 12:43 AM   #18
Mary Jo
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I think you have made a good decision. (you can see my trip report in my signature link)

My absolute favorite place in the world is Yosemite - absolute favorite.

However, at the end of your vacation I think it would be too much, and you'll want to relax and have a good time. Sequoia is beautiful. When we go for a week camping there, we invariably spend two or three days at Hume Lake. We love Sandy Cove, and the ability to rent the kayaks, etc.

You can also go to Giant Forest - I highly recommend it - see the General Sherman, largest living thing in the world. Crescent Meadow is one of my favorite places, too. You can take an easy walk around the meadow, and make your way up to Bobcat Point, with a view of Moro Rock. You might consider hiking to Crystal Cave, or if you don't want to drive so far, Boyden Cave is nice, too.

I'm going to go ahead and move this to the California board.
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:41 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elaine amj View Post
After a lot of hemming and hawing and reading a lot of trip reports, I think we will skip Yosemite this trip. We love Disney and would really like 5 days there, especially given the crowds will be insane. Also, too much driving just isn't hugely appealing for this particular trip. I just can't see us driving 6-7 hours, then expecting to drive 2-3 hrs per day to sightsee. Not on this trip. We will do Yosemite - but likely some years down the road when my kids are older and can appreciate the stunning scenery more. Plus, it adds substantially to our trip costs.

On top of that, for some reason I'm mostly excited about the trip reports I read of Kings Canyon/Sequoia. I REALLY, REALLY want to see giant trees. Plus we prefer hiking away from the crowds. I really don't care for hiking on crowded trails. Kings Canyon/Sequoia will be much less crowded and it sounds like there are some beautiful hikes there. i've read quite a lot of reviews that say with a bit of hiking, many of the vistas are almost as beautiful as what you get at Yosemite. Hume Lake's activities sound right up our family's alley. My kids will adore the day camp and I'm happy canoeing for hours at a time. DH likes the all-inclusive feel of the place.

So it will be 5 days at Disney, 3 days at Hume Lake, then travel back to LAX for our flight.

Thank you all so much for your thoughts, opinions, and perspectives!
I am glad you are coming to the right conclusions for you. I will throw out a few more things in case you circle back to reconsider.

1. July at DLR will not be "insane". Either four or five days will be fine. But you do not need five because of insanity. It just isn't insane. Busy? Yes, especially in certain places at certain times. Get there early and take afternoon breaks and you will find it very sane.

2. I have tried to put together a Yosemite trip several times. Each time there was a reason to put it off "until next time". Now I have three kids in college and we are not going to make it there as a family. Bummer.

3. Some Yosemite hiking trails are crowded. But it is a big place. I prefer to hike further outside the valley and there it is anything but crowded. Please don't picture Yosemite as this overly crowded place everywhere you go. The Valley is definitely crowded and if you visit Yosemite you must go there. But visit the Valley, see the sites, and then get out of Dodge and head further up. Many great places to see and hike.

Hope your trip is awesome in all ways!

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Old 01-22-2013, 08:02 AM   #20
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I think you made the right decision to skip Yosemite this time.

We did a trip to the California coastline several years ago.
Stayed at Monterry & loved the area. We took several days & drove to Yosemite.
We stayed in a cabin & toured the park.

It was beautiful & my pictures are awesome.
But,it was extremely crowded ... I mean unreal crowded!

We, my family of 4 all left with the same impression.
We're glad we saw it... But don't care to return.
And we are a huge National Park & wilderness loving family.
I think the huge crowds just put a damper on the trip for us.
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:05 AM   #21
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Certainly go see Giant Forest, but Redwood Mountain Grove is absolutely stunning. It's the largest sequoia grove anywhere and contains the tallest known giant sequoia tree. The crowds are lower and off trail is OK unlike much of Giant Forest. You could walk right up to a tree and touch it. I'd recommend the Redwood Saddle loop which is about 7 mostly gentle miles.
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Old 01-22-2013, 04:30 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MagicalMawMaw View Post
It was beautiful & my pictures are awesome.But,it was extremely crowded ... I mean unreal crowded!
Op, I think you are making the right decission. Yosemite is my childhood second home (2 weeks camping every summer atleast) and we love it. We go as often as we can BUT NEVER, NEVER in summer. Good luck findng a parking place and getting something to eat. It has gotten too crowded and most people go to the same area. They bring bus loads of people (tours) into the valley and there they stay. Go when you have time to spend there and when there are fewer people. It is amazing and there are a lot of areas to see.

For your future trip - while we love staying in Yosemite, there is a motel (yosemite view lodge) just outside the park that we really enjoyed. It is a short, easy drive into the valley if you can't get a reservation. It is on the river and has indoor and outdoor pools, plus a pizza place and restaurant on the premises.
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:46 PM   #23
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We're going to Yosemite the last week of June and staying at the Ahwahnee for 3 nights (after 2 nights in SF, 2 days traveling PCH, and 4 nights in DLR).

If we catch a bus to Tuolomne early in the morning, can we beat the bus crowds?
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Old 01-31-2013, 09:13 AM   #24
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You have an ambitious trip...Yosemite is well worth seeing but in my opinion not the way you are doing it.

Jack
Yosemite is awesome, but in your plan it sounds like it's not worth it....I'd skip Kings canyon and do Yosemite if it were me.....actually it was me a couple of years ago,we had to decide what we could fit into 2 weeks, and it wasn't everything!
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