Family Lovers Delight: The Pines Resort on Bass Lake

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Want to bring the kids to a kid-focused resort among nature and family fun? The Pines Resort on Bass Lake is a stone’s throw to Yosemite National Park making it a great option if you want a reasonably priced option that is nearby the southern entrance.
Located within the vicinity of Fresno Flats Historical Park and Children’s Museum of the Sierras, the Pines Resort offers both rooms and cabins and as we mentioned, its conveniently based only 17 miles outside of Yosemite‘s south gate.

You have the option to choose between 84 mountain chalets, 20 deluxe lakefront suites or two private, fully-furnished houses, all equipped with cutlery, dishes, cooking utensils and pans, as well as coffee, tea and other basic amenities.

A large bear greets you upon entrance to Registration. Note that they are Covid-compliant and doing check in through a large glass window and all the staff are wearing masks.

Rooms & Chalets

They have 105 guestrooms featuring refrigerators and LCD televisions with either private furnished balconies or patios. During our stay, we opted for a chalet so we could cook ourselves, which is a great option in the middle of growing Covid cases nationwide.

For example, they offer one King Bed Cabins, which are located on the hilltop, near the playground. Each king bed chalet features a fully equipped kitchen with living room on the entry level and a bedroom with bathroom downstairs. Each chalet is a part of an adjoining duplex, so it can be shared by larger families or parties. And, each unit has its own private deck, with a picnic table and BBQ as well as wood burning fireplace in the living room upstairs.

Above and below, the one king bedroom chalet, which is what we stayed in during our October visit.

If you’re traveling with another couple, they have two bedroom chalet options as well. Each bedroom features a king size bed and a bathroom. In addition, the upstairs bedroom comes with a gas burning fireplace and opens up to a patio deck with tables and chairs, overlooking the forest.

Their Conference Chalet is ideal as a hospitality room for groups or for families who enjoy dining out, and are not planning on cooking. This cozy two-story cabin, features spacious living room with a large, 6 people dining table, a pull-out sleeping couch, and adjacent kitchenette. It opens up to a private patio. Downstairs, there is one bedroom with 2 Queen Beds and a bathroom.

Our balcony had a great view of Bass Lake below making it a great place to soak in the sunset at the end of a day out hiking or touring the park.

Below, inside our chalet.

The kitchenette in our chalet

The Views

The views are stunning from both the chalet patios as well as the patio where you dine (Ducey’s on the Lake). There are also outdoor tennis courts and an outdoor pool.

Above: a view of Bass Lake from the restaurant patio and below: a view of Bass Lake from our chalet

Sunset as we walked from our chalet to grab dinner on the patio of Ducey’s below.

The Country Store

Adjacent to registration is their ever so fun country store.  I’ve always been a fan of country stores because they bring back the magic of my childhood in the Adirondacks. If you grew up with Target and Amazon Prime, then country stores may seem limited or old fashioned at best. But truthfully, I still love them since they often reflect the culture of the area.

They house everything from basic food supplies and every day sundries to regional-specific items. I have a soft spot for country stores in the mountains or near a national park because they tend to offer things related to nature, like the pine-filled pillows in the Adirondacks and here near Yosemite, all things bears. Of course, Madera County is swimming with eagles, kingbirds and owls as well.

Above and below: inside the country store.

Dining at The Pines

There are two restaurants and a coffee shop/café on-site. We opted for Ducey’s On the Lake because they offered outdoor dining on the patio with views of the lake and you could bring your own wine for a $15 corkage fee, which is incredibly reasonable. We noticed that several tables had also brought their own wine along, so perhaps a ‘known thing’ in the area if you stay here.

Above and below, Pork chops with vegetable medley

Salmon with rice pilaf and veggies

There was also live music playing nearby when we dined there, but far enough away where we could still talk and think during our meal. The staff were friendly and all wore masks, honoring people’s need for social distancing.

It makes for a great option if you have kids in tow — the marina at the base of the resort offers canoes and kayaks and other boating options. The resort itself sits on the North Shore of Bass Lake, and it is indeed within the Sierra National Forest at 3,300 feet elevation. If you’re not used to high elevations, bear this in mind. It took us a day or so to get used to the higher altitudes which may mean you’ll be a tad more tired than you normal.

Be sure to read our travel guide on Yosemite, which includes both cultural options and fun things to do in nature.


The Pines Resort

54432 Road 432

P.O. Box 90

Bass Lake, CA, 93604 

For more information including how to book, be sure to visit their website.


Note: we were hosted by the resort/tourism board but all opinions expressed are entirely our own.

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