December 31, 2017
Whether you’re a climber or a hiker, Camp 4 is the place to stay in Yosemite Valley. Not only is it located near El Capitan for the convenience of climbers, Camp 4 is also a short walk from trails like the Four Mile Trail, Yosemite Falls Trail, and the Mist Trail.
View of Yosemite Falls from Camp 4
The process for getting a spot for this tent-only campground can be exhaustive in the warmer months, including but not limited to getting in line during early morning hours to secure your place in line when a Ranger shows up to hand out sites at 8:30am. I’ve only ever camped here in winter when the sites are abundant and covered in snow.
The history of Camp 4 is quite interesting, and worth diving into if you have the time. Many of the world’s best climbers slept below the granite cliffs of Yosemite Valley and called Camp 4 their home in the 60’s and 70’s. The Stoneman Meadow Riot in 1970 sparked a clash between park rangers and campers for years to come, as some of the more laid-back rules around camp become heavily enforced.