Frequently Asked Questions

How much time does it take to 'see' Yosemite?
If you really want to see Yosemite, we suggest staying a minimum of 4 nights. After a day of transportation to get here, this leaves you 3 full days to see this huge park. Seven days is not too long, particularly if you like to hike or take photographs, or birdwatch. There is so much to see and do! Yosemite is vast! The park is 1,169 square miles, with 800 miles of trails! You could spend a lifetime exploring this majestic natural wonder! Fortunately, all major areas of the park are a reasonable day's drive from Sunset Inn. The key areas to visit include:                                                                                                        

  • Yosemite Valley, roughly the center of the park is where you will find many of the water falls as well as the dramatic granite cliffs, including Half Dome and El Capitan.

  • Glacier Point has a dramatic view overlooking Yosemite Valley, and there are some great hikes off the Glacier Point Road ranging from short, 2 to 3 mile hikes to Sentinel Dome or Taft Point, to longer hikes to Dewy Point, Ostrander Lake, or the Panorama Trail. The Glacier Point road is generally open May through October. If open, it is definitely a 'must do'. If it's not open, or if you are inclined for some strenuous exercise, you can do it on foot. It's a great hike about 9 miles round trip.

  • Giant Sequoia Groves. Of the three groves, the main one, the Mariposa Grove, located at the south entrance to the park, about an hour and a half drive from us, is spectacular with hundreds of trees, but because you can drive right to the grove there are usually hundreds of visitors. Our suggestion is the two other lovely groves, with the same amazing giant Sequoias, but only a handful of them, located much closer to Sunset Inn. You have to hike 2 or 3 miles round trip to get to these groves and consequently there are far fewer visitors. The short hike to either of these intimate groves, the Tuolumne, or the Merced Grove, is highly recommended.

  • The Tioga Road, Highway 120 east takes you to the dramatic Yosemite high country, and is generally open Memorial Day, till the snow flies in October/November. Here you will find White Wolf, Tenaya Lake, Tuolumne Meadows, & Tioga Pass, and numerous trailheads. This drive takes you up through the majestic forest and then above tree line into the granite, to the highest point of 9,900 feet! where the rugged expanse of the Sierra really opens up. The views are spectacular! Summer hiking in this region is outstanding!


Should we bring water, or buy water bottles?

Our mountain water is absolutely delicious. We suggest you bring your own refillable water bottles, and help keep the plastic out of the landfills. Remember to stay hydrated!

Do you have laundry facilities?
The Yosemite River Cabin has a washer and dryer inside for guest use.

What size is the refrigerator?
The refrigerator at the Yosemite River Cabin is full size.

Can we bring our pet?
Unfortunately, we are not able to accept pets. Also, be advised, pets are not encouraged to visit Yosemite, must be kept on a leash at all times, and are only allowed on paved roads and trails. There are a few paved trails in Yosemite, particularly in the valley, but pets would limit your options in visiting the park, especially hiking. However, outside the park in the national forest there are no restrictions. See Yosemite Pet Policy Here...

Bill Nickell
Lauren Nickell
Family Photo
Group Hike