Yosemite in April: Gushing Waterfalls and a Peaceful Valley

Yosemite in April: Gushing Waterfalls and a Peaceful Valley

We spent a week in Yosemite in April and fell in love with the special vibe of Yosemite valley in the spring. The waterfalls were raging and the number of tourists roaming around Yosemite was a far cry from the packed summer months. Visiting Yosemite in April is a great time of year to explore the national park, but it does have a few cons along with all the pros. Nevertheless, we will certainly be coming back to Yosemite in April for future visits in years to come.

↓ Keep reading to for the full story + pics ↓

Yosemite in April

Yosemite in April: The Good

Less Crowds

Visiting Yosemite in April is a great idea for a bunch of reasons. But the biggest and most noticeable advantage to exploring Yosemite in April was the lack of crowds. Don’t get us wrong, there are definitely still a lot of tourists that come to Yosemite during the spring time, but it’s practically a ghost town compared to peak summer months. While driving around the Yosemite Valley loop can take several hours in July and August, the lap only took us a mere 20 minutes in April. Not having to worry about getting stuck in crawling traffic as you explore all the stunning viewpoints around the valley is a huge advantage. And when you do stop to go for a hike and explore by foot, it isn’t hard to escape other people altogether and find your own private peace and tranquility in Yosemite.

Easier Camping

You’ll still want to plan ahead if you want to guarantee a campsite in Yosemite in April, but if you’re up for a little spontaneity and don’t mind switching spots every night or two, you can probably book a site upon arrival. Weekends are still tough, but we noticed lots of open sites during the week. We managed to book spots with our 27 ft trailer in North Pines and Upper Pines last minute. Moving sites a couple times was totally worth it to stay in the Valley. We still recommend making reservations far in advance though if you’re planning a trip to Yosemite in April. Reservations open up 5 months ahead on the 15th of the month at 7am PST, so set your alarm now! Pro Tip: Upper Pines has better cell service than North Pines (not sure how Lower Pines is). Learn all about Yosemite campground reservations here

Or stay at the Autocamp Yosemite Glampground

Autocamp Yosemite is a luxury glamping experience at the entrance of Yosemite National Park. You can stay in one of their brand new Airstreams, their tiny-home cabins, or a luxury tent. The entire property is absolutely beautiful, providing one of the best lodging experiences in all of Yosemite.

Check out our Autocamp Yosemite Review

 

Epic Waterfalls

Possibly the best part of seeing Yosemite in April is the epic show the waterfalls will be putting on. Unless California suffers an unseasonably dry winter, Yosemite Falls and Bridalveil Falls will be gushing. We arrived in mid-April, right after a huge storm, and the waterfalls seemed to be putting on an especially spectacular display. If you visit in the late summer or fall, these waterfalls aren’t nearly as impressive and sometimes dry up altogether. But in April, you can hear the water crashing from anywhere in the Valley.

Related: Oregon has some pretty epic waterfalls too

Yosemite in April Yosemite Falls Ice

Yosemite in April: The not so good (but not that bad either)

It still kind of feels like Winter

For the most part, the weather in Yosemite in April is pretty great. However, it’s not uncommon for a heavy rain (or even snow) storm to blow through. In the course of our 5 days in Yosemite, we experience both sunny days in the upper 70s and a small storm that brought below freezing temperatures and frozen ice around the waterfalls. Honestly, we loved experiencing Yosemite in these vastly different phases and the weather never stopped us from exploring the park. And while the views of Yosemite will always be gorgeous no matter what, the photographer perfectionists inside us couldn’t help commenting on how the views would be just a little bit better if the trees had their leaves back.

Road Closures

This is definitely the biggest downside to visiting Yosemite in April. The road to Glacier and Taft Point, two of the most remarkable views in Yosemite, is usually closed for most of April. Tioga Pass, the continuation of Highway 120 that takes you over the Sierras to the east, is also closed at this time. But if you’re up for the hike, Four Mile Trail will lead you up from the valley floor to Glacier Point (it’s actually 4.7 miles up to Glacier Point) and you’ll probably get the view to yourself and just a few others, which will never happen during the day in summer. Glacier Point road usually opens by late April, however, so if you’re visiting Yosemite later in the month, you just might get lucky. Keep in mind though that if the preceding winter saw especially heavy snowfall, expect road opening times to be pushed back up to an extra month or more. See current road conditions and past year opening/closing dates here.

Despite the road to Glacier Point being closed, you can still find awe-inspiring viewpoints all over Yosemite in April. Arguably the most famous viewpoint in all of Yosemite, Tunnel View, is still easily accessed. We took advantage of multiple sunrises and sunsets to soak in this incredible view of the valley. It seriously looks like a painting, with El Cap looming on one side, Bridalveil Falls tumbling hundreds of feet on the right, and Half Dome popping out in the distance.

Yosemite in April Tunnel View

Tunnel View Sunset // Yosemite in April

Yosemite in April sunrise at Tunnel View

Tunnel View Sunrise // Yosemite in April

Yosemite in April El Cap Bridalveil FallsYosemite in April Sentinal in clouds Sentinel in the clouds // Yosemite in April

Yosemite in April Valley Panoramic

Yosemite in April

Yosemite in April Half Dome

Yosemite in April Half Dome

Yosemite in April Sunrise El Cap

Yosemite in April: The Main Takeaway

We’d go back to Yosemite in April in a heartbeat. The weather is mild, the crowds are thin, and the views are epic. We’re looking forward to going back in September though to explore Glacier Point Road and the Tuolumne area. If you’ve never been to Yosemite before and you’re saving up for one big trip, you might be better of waiting until the fall so you can explore all the park has to offer. But if you’re okay with sticking to valley, or just looking to climb, Yosemite in April is a fantastic time to go. In between capturing epic landscape shots, we managed to snap a few with ourselves in the frame too. So we’ll close out this blog post with a few of our favorites.

See more of The Foxes Travel Photography

Yosemite in April

Epic views and butt grabs // Yosemite in April

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Yosemite in April Three Brothers Sunrise

Three Brothers on a frosty morning // Yosemite in April
 

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Yosemite in April Valley View Airstream

How good does that Airstream look in Yosemite?? Good. Real good.

The Foxes are Brandon and Gabi Fox, an adventurous husband and wife elopement photography team living and traveling in their DIY renovated 1972 Airstream. They are loosely based in the Pacific Northwest, but travel for work and play throughout the western states and beyond. Their elopement photography is award winning and is described as candid photography that captures couples as they are, where they are, blending images of love and natural beauty in the great outdoors. 

CUSTOM PHOTO ALBUM AGREEMENT

THE FOXES PHOTOGRAPHY, LLC

These Terms and Conditions are a legally binding agreement is between you (“Client”) The Foxes Photography, LLC (“Photographer”) (collectively the “Parties”, or in the singular “Party”), for the purpose of Client purchasing a custom photography album from Photographer. This Agreement shall become effective upon the date you complete the checkout process.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

  1. Fees & Retainer

Client shall commit to a custom album package by signing and returning this Agreement along with the initial payment for album service. Photographer will not begin its custom album services until the Agreement is signed and the album design fee is received. No final album will be printed until the full payment is made. In the event Client fails to remit payment as specified, Photographer shall have the right to immediately terminate this Agreement with no further obligation and retain any monies already paid as liquidated damages. Full payment must be completed by Client within 60 days of this Agreement’s date.

The fees in this Agreement are based on Photographer’s current album pricing at the time of booking. The price list is adjusted periodically, and any changes to custom albums will be charged at the prices in effect at the time.

  1. Album Design Procedure

The following outline indicates the general procedure of a custom album design. Client understands and agrees to this procedure.

  1. Photographer will use photos and album specifications to create their first custom album design.
  2. Photographer will send Client first draft of album design.
  3. Client will approve or send in revisions to album design.
  4. Photographer will make edits to album design. Only two rounds of edits are allowed.
  5. Client will approve final album design.
  6. Photographer will send in album for printing.
  7. Album is printed and shipped.
  8. Client receives final printed album.
  1. Album Spreads

Albums will include 35 spreads and no less. The definition of a “page” is one side of a spread in an album (for example, a 70-page album contains 35 spreads). If Client requests more than 35 spreads, additional spreads are $50.00 each. 

  1. Revision Rounds

The first draft will include photos selected by the photographer and will be sent to Client for approval. Client may request modifications to be made. Photographer shall complete modifications and send the second draft of album design to Client. Client may then accept the design or request one more round of modifications. Photographer will complete this second modification request and send the final draft of album to Client. After these two rounds of revisions to the album design, no further revisions are allowed. Any additional revisions are invoiced at a rate of $75.00 per round. All additional revision rounds must be paid before the revision is made by the Photographer. Photographer requires up to 10 days to complete a revision request. Client has 50 days to send Photographer any and all revision requests. Any revisions requested by Client more than 50 days after this Agreement’s date will not be accepted by Photographer.

  1. Final Approval

Photographer will not place an album order with the album Manufacturer until Client approves the design draft, and the balance is paid on any upgrades or additional spreads. Client agrees to check the final album design very carefully before giving final approval. Once final approval is given, Photographer is not responsible for typos, image defects, duplicate images, or other errors that may have been missed. 

  1. Parent/Duplicate Albums

Parent/duplicate albums cannot be altered from the original designs. All parent/duplicate albums shall be ordered at the time of final approval of the original album design and will be invoiced and must be paid prior to Photographer sending in album for printing. No parent/duplicate albums are available after the original album ordering phase is complete.

  1. Album Delivery

Client understands and agrees that Photographer’s album manufacturer (“Manufacturer”) generally takes 6-8 weeks to print and manufacture the album. While every possible precaution is taken and Manufacturer has been selected by Photographer for its superb quality, Photographer assumes no liability for the loss or damage of album while in possession of Manufacturer. 

  1. Ordering Date

Client shall agree to final album design within 60 days of this Agreement’s date. Any delay by Client in approving final album design will result in termination of this Agreement and no further obligation by Photographer.

  1. Retouching and Edits

Photographer will use the final edited images delivered to Client to make the album design. Photographer will not re-edit or retouch any images.

  1. Returns

Client understands and agrees that once final approval of album design has been given to Photographer, no returns or refunds are allowed whatsoever. In the event Client receives the printed album and sees any manufacturer defects or dislikes the album quality, Photographer will work with Manufacturer to the best of their ability to remedy the situation. Client is responsible for any additional fees associated with returning or reprinting the album.

  1. Album Archiving

Photographer shall keep a copy of final approved album design for 90 days but does not permanently archive the final album design. Client understands that after 90 days the album design will not be available to order additional copies and a new agreement must be signed to start the process over.

  1. Photographer Copyright

The final album design by The Foxes Photography, LLC is their property, will remain their property, and are protected by United States Copyright Laws (USC Title 17). Client hereby waives any claims for ownership, income, editorial control, and use of the images and album design. Violations of this federal law will be subject to its civil and criminal penalties.

  1. Reproduction

Client and Client’s agents agree to acquire the album design and product directly from Photographer through their professional album company. Client and Client’s agents agree not to scan, copy or reproduce the album design in any manner without written permission, including using the custom album design to create other albums. Photographer may seek damages for any illegal reproduction. Client and Client’s agents further agree not to supply the album to any third-parties.

  1. Communication

Photographer’s office hours are 9:00am – 5:00pm PST Monday through Friday. Photographer’s primary source of communication is through their email [email protected] Photographer will respond to Client’s emails within those office hours.

  1. Indemnification

Client shall indemnify, release, discharge and hold harmless Photographer, its heirs, legal representatives, assigns, employees, contractors, or any persons or corporations acting under permission or authority of the Photographer from and against any and all losses, damages, liabilities, and expenses and costs, including reasonable legal expenses and attorneys’ fees, to which Photographer may become subject as a result of any claim, demand, action or other legal proceeding by any third-party to the extent such losses arise directly or indirectly out of activities performed by Photographer pursuant to this Agreement, except to the extent such losses result from the gross negligence, willful misconduct, or intentional acts of Photographer.

  1. Maximum Damages

The sole remedy for any actions or claims by Client shall be limited to a refund, the maximum amount not to exceed the total monies paid by Client under this Agreement.

  1. Limitation of Liability

If, during the production and/or before the album(s) are delivered to Client, the media has been lost, stolen, or is unusable because of defect, damage, equipment/platform malfunction, processing, or other technical error caused by Photographer or by forces outside the control of Photographer, Client agrees to relieve and hold Photographer harmless and will not impose any additional liability.

In no event shall Photographer be liable under this Agreement to Client or any other third-party for consequential, indirect, incidental, special, exemplary, punitive, or enhanced damages, arising out of, relating to, or in connection with any breach of this Agreement, regardless of (a) whether such damages were foreseeable, (b) whether or not Client was advised of such damages, and (c) the legal or equitable theory (contract, tort, or otherwise) upon which the claim is based.

  1. Force Majeure 

No Party shall be liable or responsible to the other Party, nor be deemed to have defaulted under or breached this Agreement, for any failure or delay in fulfilling or performing any term of this Agreement (except for any obligations to make payments to the other Party hereunder), when and to the extent such failure or delay is caused by or results from acts beyond the impacted party’s (“Impacted Party”) control that are unforeseen and unpredictable at the time of contracting, including, but not limited to, the following force majeure 

events (“Force Majeure Events”): (a) acts of God; (b) a natural disaster (fires, explosions, earthquakes, hurricane, flooding, storms, explosions, infestations), epidemic, or pandemic; (c) war, invasion, hostilities (whether war is declared or not), terrorist threats or acts, riot or other civil unrest; (d) government order or law; (e) actions, embargoes or blockades in effect on or after the date of this Agreement; (f) action by any governmental authority; (g) national or regional emergency; (h) strikes, labor stoppages or slowdowns or other industrial disturbances; and (i) shortage of adequate power or transportation facilities. The Impacted Party shall give Notice (as defined in Section 27) within 10 days of the Force Majeure Event to the other Party, stating the period of time the occurrence is expected to continue. The Impacted Party shall use diligent efforts to end the failure or delay and ensure the effects of such Force Majeure Event are minimized. The Impacted Party shall resume the performance of its obligations as soon as reasonably practicable after the removal of the cause. In the event that the Impacted Party’s failure or delay remains uncured for a period of 15 days following Notice given by it, the other Party may thereafter terminate this Agreement upon Notice. The Retainer and all other payments made by Client up to the date of Notice of a Force Majeure Event are non-refundable.

  1. Cancellation of Album Services by Photographer

In the event Photographer determines, in its sole discretion, that it cannot or will not perform its obligations under this Agreement due to circumstances including, but not limited to, injury, illness, death of family member, pregnancy, military orders, religious obligations, other personal emergencies, or total breakdown of communication with Client, it will:

  1. Immediately give notice to Client;
  2. Issue a refund or credit based on a reasonably accurate percentage of custom album services rendered; and
  3. Excuse Client of any further performance and/or payment obligations under this Agreement.
  1. Sales Tax

Should any sale and/or use tax be imposed on any part of this Agreement, such tax shall be collected from Client and remitted by Photographer. All sales tax will be included on invoices.

  1. Entire Agreement

This is a binding Agreement that incorporates the entire understanding of the Parties, supersedes any other written or oral agreements between the Parties, and any modifications must be in writing, signed by all Parties, and physically attached to the original agreement.


22. Venue and Jurisdiction

This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Washington including all matters of construction, validity, performance, and enforcement and without giving effect to the principles of conflict of laws. The Parties agree that any dispute or lawsuit arising out of, or concerning, this Agreement that is not first resolved by arbitration shall be resolved exclusively in a court of competent jurisdiction located in Whatcom County, Washington. The Parties assume responsibility for their own collection costs and legal fees incurred should enforcement of this Agreement become necessary.

  1. Arbitration

Any and all disputes or disagreements rising between the Parties out of this Agreement upon which an amicable understanding cannot be reached, shall be decided by arbitration in accordance with the procedural rules of the American Arbitration Association. The Parties agree to be bound by the decision of the arbitrator(s). The arbitration proceeding shall take place in Whatcom County, Washington, unless another location is mutually agreed to by the Parties. The cost and expenses of the arbitrators shall be shared equally by the Parties. Each Party shall be responsible for its own costs and expenses in presenting the dispute for arbitration.

  1. Severability & No Waiver

In the event that any part of this Agreement is found to be invalid or unenforceable, the remainder of this Agreement shall remain valid and enforceable. Any failure by one or both Parties to enforce a provision of this Agreement shall not constitute a waiver of any other portion or provision of this Agreement.

  1. Transfer

This Agreement cannot be transferred or assigned to any third-party by either the Photographer or Client without written consent of all Parties. 

  1. Headings

Headings and titles are provided in this Agreement for convenience only and will not be construed as part of this Agreement.

  1. Notice

Parties shall provide effective notice (“Notice”) to each other via email at the date and time which the Notice is sent: Photographer’s Email: [email protected]

  1. Counterparts; Facsimile Signatures 

The Parties agree that a facsimile copy (electronic copy) of this Agreement, which contains the Parties’ signatures, may be used as the original.

Signatures

By checking the box on this order form and upon completion of purchase, you confirm that you have read, understood, and agree to the terms and conditions of this Agreement.