Best town to live in close to Yosemite

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mts4602

Mountain climber
Louisville, KY
Topic Author's Original Post - Mar 18, 2013 - 03:53pm PT
I've often thought of making the move to California to be closer to Yosemite and the Sierras, but I have no idea where I'd live. I was just wondering where some of you live and how far you have to drive to get to the valley. I've been there a few times and it seems like there isn't much civilzation until 2 or 3 hours outside the park. Bascially I'm looking for a decent sized town where a younger person like myself wouldn't go crazy from the lack of people my age. Also I work as an accountant so some place likely to have jobs would be good. I don't know much about it, but Fresno seems like it might fit the bill. I just don't want to drive 4 hours from San Fran everytime I want to go climbing.

So in short, where is a good place to live?

Matt
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Mar 18, 2013 - 03:57pm PT
Fresno....not great (i'm super picky) but probably you're best option.
Much the best choice of Valley towns.
squishy

Mountain climber
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:09pm PT
I wouldn't move any closer than Sacramento, all other central valley cities suck big butts..
10b4me

Ice climber
Happy Boulders
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:11pm PT
Four hours to the Valley isn't bad. I drive six.
michaeld

Sport climber
Sacramento
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:14pm PT
I wouldn't move any closer than Sacramento, all other central valley cities suck big butts..




+1. Smells like sh*t the more south on 99 you go.
JEleazarian

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:16pm PT
I grew up in Fresno, Spent four years at Berkeley, then nine in the Los Angeles area, and moved back to Fresno 31 years ago specifically because i wanted to be closer to the mountains. I wasn't disappointed. I even met my wife after I moved back here.

There are certainly plenty of opportunities for competent accountants here. It averages about two hours to Yosemite Valley from here, although I've gotten there as quickly as an hour-and-a-half. It's about the same to Courtright, the Balls, and several other excellent areas. While there's not a lot of outdoor bouldering within a short drive, we have a pretty good climbing gym. There's also a decent network of bike paths, and rather convenient cycling in the foothills and mountains east of here.

The downside is that we have about a million people in the greater Fresno area, with the mentality of a town of 50,000. If you're expecting cosmopolitan city attractions, you'll be disappointed. My summary would be this: If you like entertainment, you might want to look elsewhere and drive farther to the mountains. If you like supplying your own entertainment, or don't mind driving three or four hours for a first-rate, sophisticated atmosphere, you'll love it here.

John

Melissa

Gym climber
berkeley, ca
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:22pm PT
If you want to live close to Sierra climbing in a somewhat happening town, it's worth asking whether or not Yosemite is the only part of the Sierra that will do.
adikted

Boulder climber
Tahooooeeeee
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:26pm PT
Reno??
mts4602

Mountain climber
Louisville, KY
Topic Author's Reply - Mar 18, 2013 - 04:27pm PT
Thanks John. That helps a lot.

No, Yosemite is not the only place that will do, but it is my primary motivation for moving there. I just wanted to see if what I was thinking was even possible.
squishy

Mountain climber
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:28pm PT
From Sacramento I can be in the Valley in about three hours depending on touron traffic...

I can reach Lovers Leap in about 1.5 hrs...and the beaches in about the same time...
ontheedgeandscaredtodeath

Social climber
SLO, Ca
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:35pm PT
I know this will come as a surprise, but no towns fit your description. You'd think in a massive state with 30+ million people that there would be some options, but nope.

jghedge

climber
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:46pm PT
"I know this will come as a surprise, but no towns fit your description. You'd think in a massive state with 30+ million people that there would be some options, but nope."

Agreed. Bishop is the best option between being relatively close (3 hours) and not living in a hellhole (Fresno).
Dapper Dan

Trad climber
Menlo Park
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:49pm PT
My first choice would be the little town of Auburn north of Sacramento .

Second would be Placerville .

Tied for third is Fresno or Sacramento .

You should calculate distance to Tahoe skiing also ...

... beware of Bakersfield

The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:49pm PT
Oakhurst might be worth considering, Mariposa is similar, but smaller, and Sonora is about the size of Oakhurst, all about 1 1/2 hrs from the Valley Floor. I always liked those towns and their outlying communities, but never lived in any of them. They're all within 1/2 hr commuting distance of big Central Valley towns like Fresno, Merced and Modesto.
Jeremy Ross

Gym climber
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:50pm PT
North Fork.

Duh.


-JR
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:50pm PT
Bishop is too small for gainfull employment for most and too far away from the Valley when Tioga Pass is closed. Does have the wonderful option of the Eastern Sierra!!! If you can find decent work thefe do it! The Pass is open when the weather is best in the Valley.
PS Not a cultural hub.
Jon Beck

Trad climber
Oceanside
Mar 18, 2013 - 04:54pm PT
If you live in the foothills (Mariposa Oakhurst) you will find yourself going to Fresno for a good time. Really kind of a sad fate :) j/k. I like the foothills, a good compromise.
paul roehl

Boulder climber
california
Mar 18, 2013 - 05:03pm PT
Santa Cruz! Yeah, it's a bit of a drive, but Silicon Valley is booming again (good jobs); interesting university town; rated one of the best ART cities in America; great surf; good climbing gym; lots of nearby hiking. Sure your carbon footprint will enlarge with commuting and all but it's worth it... just don't paddle out at Sacramento Street.
jghedge

climber
Mar 18, 2013 - 05:03pm PT
"Bishop is too small for gainfull employment for most and too far away from the Valley when Tioga Pass is closed. Does have the wonderful option of the Eastern Sierra!!!"



More than a few medical professionals commute to LA from Bishop to work 36 hour shifts, believe it or not

Also being an accountant, as the OP stated, might not necessarily entail being physically present anywhere in particular (working online).

You could try being an accountant in the park itself for that matter...
Brandon-

climber
The Granite State.
Mar 18, 2013 - 05:18pm PT
Reno.
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