To celebrate the recent 101st birthday of the National Park Service, the NPS and the National Park Foundation invite visitors of all ages to #FindYourPark with free admission to the more than 400 national parks across the country, including Yosemite. In addition, to have a little fun with the 101st birthday, a special Parks 101 content series is highlighting lesser-known parks, stories, and experiences through social media.
This program will fund 30 free service days through September, 2020.
“One of the amazing things about the National Park System is that there is always something new to learn, something new to experience, and something new to explore,” said Will Shafroth, president of the National Park Foundation. “Parks 101 entices people to get out there and give that ‘something new’ a shot, sparking a lifelong love for our national parks.”
YARTS to provide free service to Yosemite
Yosemite Area Regional Transportation System (YARTS) will provide free transit service to Yosemite National Park on all free National Park Service (NPS) gate days for the next three years.
YARTS will receive funding through the Federal Lands Access Program for a three-year demonstration project to operate free buses to Yosemite on all free NPS gate days.
YARTS staff expects the demonstration project to be highly successful.
“We are excited to assist the park with the management of vehicle congestion by offering an alternative to driving and parking” said YARTS Staff Analyst Cindy Kelly. “We want to give Californians and other visitors the opportunity to experience our nation’s jewel without adding to the congestion problem.”
The Highway 140 service through Merced and Mariposa counties will be the first corridor to offer free service with this new program on Nov. 11 and 12.
Reservations will not be accepted on free service days, which means the service will be based on a first-come, first-served policy.
Seasonal free services from Mammoth Lakes, Fresno and Sonora are planned for summer of 2018.
Free service events will be posted on the YARTS Facebook page at www.facebook.com/rideyarts and website at www.yarts.com.
Free gate days for 2018 have not yet been released.
YARTS is the only public transit to Yosemite, with buses entering Yosemite Valley from Merced, Mammoth Lakes, Sonora and Fresno - as well as many other towns along the way including Coarsegold, Oakhurst, and Bass Lake.
YARTS began service in May 2000, and now provides an alternative to driving to over 120,000 riders per year.
NPS and YARTS