My family stayed in a Meadow Yurt at Yosemite Lakes April 8-11, 2012 as our "home base" for forays into Yosemite National Park, as Yosemite Valley itself is about a 35-40 minute drive from Yosemite Lakes via Highway 120. We chose the yurt because it offered two key features that appealed to members of my family--a fire pit for roasting marshmallows and indoor plumbing!
From what I can tell, all the yurts are identical; it's the setting that determines the price level. River yurts command the highest price by virtue of location along the South Fork of the Tuolumne River, while Hillside yurts are the least expensive. In between price-wise are the Meadow yurts, which are literally across the road from the River yurts.
The River and Meadow yurts are located on the eastern end of the Yosemite Lakes property. Access is controlled by a gate that requires a code number to be entered. Behind the River and Meadow yurts are many tent sites, but these were closed and unoccupied during my stay. I'm sure these will be filled up during summer, so you may want to keep that in mind if you stay during peak season.
Physically, the yurts are about 30 feet in diameter. Half of the interior space is devoted to the living/sleeping area, one-quarter to the bathroom, and one-quarter to the kitchen/dining area. Because of the shape of the yurt, the ceiling is very high, and a skylight caps the dome. A locking entry door leads to a small deck equipped with a gas grill (grill brushes for cleaning are provided) and two screened windows equipped with venetian blinds on the inside permit additional light. The "window panes" are secured with velcro and can be removed to permit additional ventilation. Storm flaps over the window exteriors can be lowered if needed. (Tip: bring a small stepladder to help with these.)
The yurt is very well stocked. Linens provided include bed sheets, pillows, pillowcases, blankets, comforters, bath towels, wash cloths, and a shower mat, but you need to provide your own soap and shampoo. Kitchen appliances include a full-size refrigerator/freezer, two-burner electric stovetop, microwave oven, two-slot toaster, and 10-cup coffeemaker. A full range of utensils and cookware is also included, as well as a cutting board, colander, and dishrack (dish soap and a sponge are provided). Creature comforts include a gas heater, air conditioner, and small television with DirecTV. For sleeping, there is a queen size futon and a bunk bed (single upper and double lower).
Please note that the river can be quite loud if the current is strong. In addition, if it rains like it did during our last night's stay, the raindrops hitting the yurt's walls and ceiling can be noisy. I'd recommend bring earplugs, just in case. Also cell phone coverage for me at least was non-existent. In addition, the nearest restaurant is about 20 minutes away in Buck Meadows.
All in all, I enjoyed my stay. There's no way I would call it camping, but I think it's a good bridge for anyone who wants to transition from a hotel/motel experience to a different accomodation experience. While the distance to Yosemite Valley may put some people off, you're paying less as a result.
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- Also Known As:
- Yosemite Lakes Cabins And Hostel
- Yosemite Lakes Cabins Hotel Groveland