National Park Week would usually see Yosemite packed to the brim with nature lovers in search of tumbling waterfalls, goliath granite cliffs, and David Attenborough-worthy wildlife encounters. Instead, campgrounds are empty, trails are deserted, and coyotes, bears, and even bobcats are roaming the roads.
Is Yosemite National Park open? The COVID-19 pandemic has shut down national parks across the country and forced scores of adventure seekers to stay at home, including those bound for Yosemite. Thankfully, the magic is still well and truly alive. Yosemite may be closed, but that doesn’t mean you can’t show some love for the American icon during National Park Week. From small donations to grand gestures, read on for some ideas on how to put your money where your heart is and support Yosemite National Park as it rides out the pandemic.
Bring home a piece of Yosemite at the online Ansel Adams Gallery
Yosemite’s dramatic landscapes have inspired scores of artists over the centuries, including celebrated landscape photographer, Ansel Adams. In Yosemite Village, the Ansel Adams Gallery showcases evocative black-and-white landscapes snapped throughout the park. Yosemite may be closed, but the Ansel Adams Gallery website is open for business, making now the perfect time to invest in a new piece of artwork. From beautiful dogwood blossoms and sun-dappled sequoia groves to snow-dusted Half Dome and thundering Bridalveil Fall, digitally-mastered replicas not only support Yosemite but also bring the beauty of the park into your home. If you prefer trucker caps, hoodies, retro posters, and playing cards, check out the merchandise at the official online Yosemite Gift Shop.
Show some love for local businesses in Mariposa County
The local communities around Yosemite are the heart and soul of Mariposa County and play an important role in keeping the park open. Tourism has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, and many small businesses are struggling. Whether you’re ordering Yosemite-inspired roasts from the Mariposa Coffee Company or purchasing a gift card from small businesses like Happy Burger Diner or Skydive Yosemite, supporting local enterprises is one of the best ways to ensure that when the park is up and running again, so are the Mariposa County communities that make it tick.
Brighten up your Zooms with Yosemite Web Conference Backgrounds
Digital is the new norm, with platforms like Zoom and Microsoft Teams experiencing a huge surge in demand. Next time you’re joining a corporate web conference or sharing a virtual happy hour with friends, download Yosemite’s gorgeous Web Conference Backgrounds and showcase picturesque scenes of Ahwahnee Meadow, Mariposa Grove, Half Dome, and the Merced River.
Stock up on official Yosemite National Park gift cards
Purchasing official Yosemite National Park gift cards is one of the easiest and most flexible ways to pledge your support. They can be redeemed at all restaurants within the park, including the historic and astoundingly elegant Ahwahnee Dining Room, which has hosted the likes of John F. Kennedy and Queen Elizabeth II. Your future self will thank you as you savor Braised Californian Lamb Osso Buco, White Chocolate Maple Cheesecake, and Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.
Get tagging on social media
In the face of travel restrictions and social distancing, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter have become a lifeline for many intrepid wanderers. Promoting Yosemite on social media during National Park Week is a great way to stay engaged with the park and encourage others to visit when it’s reopened. Follow the official Yosemite National Park Instagram account, share your favorite photos from your previous trips, tag your friends, post YouTube videos, and more. Don’t forget to use the #NationalParkWeek hashtag.
Keep the magic alive with Virtual Yosemite
The gates of Yosemite might be closed, but behind the scenes, the crew is working hard to help armchair travelers discover the park with Virtual Yosemite. Learn about bird songs, star constellations, and moonbows with the educational Yosemite Nature Notes video series, watch dawn break over El Capitan via the live webcam, and download the kid-friendly activity packs. All this takes time and money, so why not make a donation to a national parks charity like the Yosemite Conservatory to show your appreciation? The National Park Foundation is another fantastic national parks charity.
Team Outdoorsy is here to help you along your journey. If you have questions or concerns about your upcoming RV rental, give us a call at 1-877-723-7232, send us an email, or start a chat. And for a continuously updated list of frequently asked COVID-19 questions relating to RV travel, visit our FAQ page.