Sentinel Beach in the Yosemite Valley is the second of three places I recommend for picnics and swimming and family fun. It is located just down the valley loop road from the Cathedral Beach picnic area as you enter the valley. The picnic area is named for Sentinel Falls, which becomes a spectacular “stairstep” waterfall in the spring when it is cascading down into the valley.
It is also easy to miss Sentinel Beach as it is only marked by a very small sign and the turnoff to a dirt road does not look very promising.
Sentinel Beach for Secluded Fun
These facts also means relatively few people will bother to stop at this delightful beach. The area is not well developed so just find a place to park under the trees and enjoy.[sam id=1 codes=’false’]
The trees in the area means you won’t see as much of the surrounding cliffs, other than El Capitan across the Merced, but don’t let that discourage you from stopping here. This is both a great place for children to run, play and swim and for people of all ages to explore and commune with nature.
Sentinel Beach Is Somewhat Primitive
Sentinel Beach offers a few picnic tables and the standard chemical toilets to be found everywhere in the Park. It’s just too bad they can’t come up with a more pleasant smelling chemical for these devices.
- Yosemite Trail Restoration Completed (yosemite.lodgingandthingstodo.com)