Top 200 Places: Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park
California 95389

This 750,000 acre park is one of the most popular national parks in the country. Yosemite’s geology is world famous for its granite cliffs, tall waterfalls and giant sequoia groves. As with most national parks, pets have limited access within the park. Pets are not allowed on unpaved or poorly paved trails, in wilderness areas including hiking trails, in park lodging (except for some campgrounds) and on shuttle buses. However, there are still several nice areas to walk with your pooch and you will be able to see the majority of sights and points of interest that most visitors see. Dogs are allowed in developed areas and on fully paved trails, include Yosemite Valley which offers about 2 miles of paved trails. From these trails you can view El Capitan, Half Dome and Yosemite Falls. You can also take the .5 mile paved trail right up to the base of Bridalveil Fall which is a 620 foot year round waterfall. The best time to view this waterfall is in the spring or early summer. The water thunders down and almost creates a nice rain at the base. Water-loving dogs will be sure to like this attraction. In general dogs are not allowed on unpaved trails, but this park does make the following exceptions. Dogs are allowed on the Meadow Loop and Four Mile fire roads in Wawona. They are also allowed on the Carlon Road and on the Old Big Oak Flat Road between Hodgdon Meadow and Hazel Green Creek. Dogs must be on a 6 foot or less leash and attended at all times. People must also clean up after their pets. For a detailed map of Yosemite, visit their web site at The green dots show the paved trails. There are four main entrances to the park and all four lead to the Yosemite Valley. The park entrance fees are as follows: $20 per vehicle, $40 annual pass or $10 per individual on foot. The pass is good for 7 days. Prices are subject to change. Yosemite Valley is open year round and may be reached via Highway 41 from Fresno, Highway 140 from Merced, Highway 120 from Manteca and in late spring through late fall via the Tioga Road (Highway 120 East) from Lee Vining. From November through March, all park roads are subject to snow chain control (including 4x4s) or temporary closure at any time due to hazardous winter driving conditions. For updated 24 hour road and weather conditions call (209) 372-0200.

Top 200 Places, with tens of thousands of places listed to take your dog to, will be releasing on it’s Dog News blog, Facebook page and on Twitter a list of 200 Top Places that you can take your dog in the U.S. and Canada. This list, while intended to highlight top places that are especially pet-friendly, is not designed to be the absolutely top 200 places that we could find, but a sampling of the top places so that all regions, types of attractions, hotels, B&Bs, vacation rentals, parks, beaches, shopping and more can be considered. No doubt each of you will find many other places not on this list or our full list of dog-friendly places at Please let us know about them by commenting on the blog or emailing us at You can also let us and our readers know if you agree or disagree with the selections, or your experiences there. Please keep in mind that places often change their policies regarding dogs and thus may have different policies at any time in the future.

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