Visitor Center – Tuolumne County

Half Dome – Yosemite Musing

Get or Give Half Dome permits<HERE>

     There are several Gateway cities to Yosemite including Groveland, Mariposa, Oakhurst, Sonora and Lee Vining. Each has Visitor/Tourist Centers that cater to the businesses surrounding the park. When arriving from the Bay Area via Hwy 120/108, you will make a hard right turn just south of Sonora onto Hwy 120. If you were to continue straight on 108 the road heads over the Sonora Pass. Just after you make the turn to Yosemite, look to your left. You will see the Tuolumne County Visitor Center building.

     It is a seasonal facility with the main office being in downtown Sonora.  This county boasts the Gold Country towns of Sonora, Columbia, Jamestown, Twain Harte, Angel’s Camp, Murphys and Groveland. One of my favorite things to do is spelunking (caving) in the foothill caves. The visitor center can link you up with everything about Yosemite and the surrounding area. Stop by and tell them Mr Half Dome sent you.

Pat Newton is a wealth of information

Other news:  Yosemite Fire & Rescue is holding an open house at their Crane Flat Helitack base on Saturday and Sunday Sept 25 & 26. 


Unrelated thought worth quoting: “Perhaps the truth depends on a walk around the lake.” – Wallace Stevens

*MrHalfDome – Rick Deutsch –


10 Responses to “Visitor Center – Tuolumne County”

  1. kathy Says:

    Very cool! Pat Newton is a personal friend of mine and it was such a fun surprise to see her here. She is one of a very small staff for the Tuolumne County Visitor Center staff. She is usually the one who works this small summer only site. There is also a Visitor Center as you come into Sonora on 49 on the right as you come into town. Also a weath of info for all season stuff for Tuolumne County and Yosemite including events, hiking, camping, caves, and rafting etc.

  2. kathy Says:

    Rick just emailed me and told me to look closer at the picture – and sure enough this Pat Newton is a guy and not my friend who is a “she”, so I guess there is two Pat Newton’s with the Visitor Center. The info on the Visitor Center in Sonora remains true and who knows you might be the female Pat Newton!

  3. john Says:

    I love Oakhurst and the cheap gas, plus wealth of hotels and restaurants for such a small town. Two thumbs down for Lee Vining… old gas stations with some of the most expensive gas in the country. Make sure to fill up in Fallon or Carson City!

  4. kathy Says:

    To follow up on John’s gas comment – he is correct about Oakhurst, if you come in that way. If you come in through Groveland, make sure you get gas in Oakdale. I love the Sonora area, but gas is high in Sonora and Jamestown and really high in Groveland.

  5. Dean Says:

    Gas? Expensive? Hah…try $7 a gallon here in the UK… ;o)

  6. kathy Says:

    OMG, Dean! OK, everyone, don’t get gas in the UK before going to Yosemite! Although, Dean, rumor has it that the UK gives more vacation time to employees than we get here in the US.

  7. Andy Says:

    You know the vistor center you speak of on the corner used to be a brothel back in the day servng Jamestown and Chinese camp. The history in the foothills is amazing if you take the time to learn about it.

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