YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, CA

WHEN: You pick the dates! (Read below for info)

COST: $500-3,500 (dependent on length, group size, season, etc.)

DEPOSIT: 20% of workshop cost

GROUP SIZE: 1-8 people

Over the years we have found that everyone wants something different from Yosemite. Some want to explore the valley, others the high Sierra, while some want to examine the small details that make this park wonderful. Because Yosemite has so many brilliant seasons, colors, and moods, we have decided to make this a "trip by demand" where you decide what you want to see and photograph. Whether you want to go in spring for the waterfalls and dogwoods, autumn for the colors, or winter for the solitude and snow, this park can offer more than most others! Let us know what you want to see and photograph and we can help plan the perfect visit and tour to Yosemite National Park!

 

Because of this flexibility in planning, you can decide how long you want to spend in the park. Whether you want to come for 1 day or stay for 5, we can help! We will spend the majority of our trip exploring every nook and crevice in Yosemite Valley while learning to better use our cameras and take more spectacular images that will pop.

We will also be looking out for some of the magnificent Sierra Nevada wildlife such as black bears, deer, bobcats, owls, and more! Whether you're a Yosemite veteran or it's your first time, this will be a fantastic few days exploring one of the world's most spectacular places while improving your photography skills!

Below is a brief synopsis of every season to help you decide which one is most appealing:

Winter: Between December through early March, the Sierras become white with snow and quiet with a lack of crowds. This can be one of the greatest times to visit, especially after a snowstorm blankets the valley floor with all that soft white powder. A big draw in mid-February as well is the famous Firefall.

Spring: Arguably the most popular time to visit, the valley comes alive with greenery, growth, and roaring as the waterfalls are reborn. On years where the winter snows are high and the spring rains persist through April, the valley floor becomes flooded, creating wonderful opportunities to photograph reflections. There are also excellent opportunities to photograph the dogwoods along the Merced River.

Summer: While not our favorite season, summer can still offer a lot to those who can withstand the higher crowds. As the snow has completely melted away, there is the chance to drive the high elevation roads to see Yosemite from above. From up top, the view over the valley and the afternoon and evening storm clouds make for dramatic subjects.

Autumn: Things begin to wind back down towards mid-September as the crowds thin out and the colors begin to emerge. This is usually when the waterfalls are at the lowest or nonexistent as the summer months can be very dry, leading to a low Merced River, which helps create beautiful scenes with the exposed river rocks. Colors typically emerge around mid-October and stay through early November.

WHY TOUR WITH ME?

  • Having lived in close proximity, I have visited Yosemite numerous times

  • 14+ years of experience out in the wild with a wide variety of wildlife

  • Thorough understanding of the biology, geology, history, and ecology of Yosemite National Park and surrounding area

  • Degrees in both Organismal Biology and Zoology to give up to date information about the wildlife we encounter

  • Deep knowledge and experience with guiding and photographing in the Sierra Nevadas

  • Knowledge of many secret scenic and wildlife locations that many tourists would not know of

  • Small group size to make sure you get a lot of on-on-one instruction and information

  • Extensive knowledge of cameras and how to further your photography skills in the field

  • Huge passion for nature, photography, and helping others get the best shots possible!

HIGHLIGHTS

What you can expect on this trip:

  • Watching the sunrise over Yosemite Valley

  • Finding black bears emerging with their cubs of the year

  • Listening to the roar of Yosemite Falls at full power

  • Photographing the reflections of the mountains in the flooded meadows

  • Witnessing a sunset on the face of Half Dome

  • Photographing wildflowers blooming along the Merced river

  • Watching rainbows form after a spring storm

  • Gazing up the stars and milky way while practicing our night photography skills

COSTS

INCLUDED

  • Photography and post-processing instruction

  • Transportation within the park (carpool)

  • Park entrance fees (under 4 people)

  • Snacks

DOES NOT INCLUDE

  • Transportation to the park

  • Lodging

  • Meals Beverages

  • Park fee (if over 5 people; one time fee of $25 when you enter)

SUGGESTED GEAR

  • DSLR camera body

  • Wide angle lens (e.g. 16-35,mm 24-70mm, etc. Mostly used for landscapes)

  • Mid range lens (70-200mm)

  • Telephoto (300mm+)

  • Flash

  • Tripod

  • Polarizing filter

  • UV filter

  • ND filter

  • Graduated ND filter

  • Camera bag capable of carrying gear and daily necessities

LODGING

There are many great options for lodging in and around Yosemite National Park. We usually recommend staying in El Portal, located just outside the main park gate to Yosemite Valley. The lodging is much more affordable here than inside the park. 

Inside the park and valley, there are 2 hotels and some camping options. Please let us know if you need help picking your lodging.

TRANSPORTATION

If the group is 5 participants and under, we can all fit in one car. A large rental car can be obtained upon request if your group is looking at staying together.

 

If group becomes too large, then we will use multiple cars to transport around the park. 

DINING

Meals are not included, but we will have the option to eat together in groups.

REGISTRATION FORM

When I receive your registration information, I will respond within 24 hours with a registration packet and more information. Once the deposit is paid for, you will be asked to sign a liability waiver. The remaining amount for the safari must be paid in full 30 days prior to your departure. Tour fees can be paid through PayPal and will be asked to cover the 2.9% PayPal fee. 

If you wish to speak to me directly, feel free to call: (425) 301-1757, or email: chasedekker@ymail.com

MORE INFO

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CHASEDEKKER@YMAIL.COM | MONTEREY, CALIFORNIA

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