Renting a Bear Canister

You must use allowed bear-resistant food containers throughout the Yosemite Wilderness to store all your food.
Two rangers holding bear canisters stand in front of the Valley Wilderness Center

Bear Canister Rentals

You can rent a Garcia Backpackers' Cache 812 canister from any staffed wilderness permit station. The cost is $5 per week with a $95 deposit (cash or credit card accepted, but you must pick up the cash deposit at the location where you rented the canister during business hours). Reservations are not available, nor are they necessary.

Garcia Backpackers' Cache canisters are 12 inches (30 cm) tall, 8.8 inches (22.4 cm) in diameter, have a volume of 615 cubic inches (10 L), and weigh 2 pounds, 11 ounces (1.2 kg).

You may be able to rent other allowed bear canisters by directly contacting a manufacturer.

Rental Locations

  • Yosemite Valley, all year, at either the Wilderness Center (summer) or Valley Welcome Center (winter).
  • Wawona Visitor Center at Hill's Studio (summer only)
  • Tuolumne Meadows Wilderness Center (summer only)
  • Big Oak Flat Information Station (summer only)
  • Hetch Hetchy Entrance Station (all year, although availability may be limited November through March; call 209/379-1922 to check availability)

(Check current hours for these wilderness centers.)

To Return a Canister in Yosemite

Please empty and clean your canister before returning it (a $15 fee may be charged for canisters not cleaned prior to return).

You can return bear canisters 24 hours per day to any wilderness permit station.

If the station is open, please return to the front desk for quicker processing. If the station is closed, you can find a drop box outside the permit station.

Return Locations:

  • Yosemite Valley Wilderness Center (all year) or Valley Welcome Center (winter)
  • Wawona Visitor Center at Hill's Studio
  • Tuolumne Meadows Wilderness Center
  • Big Oak Flat Information Station
  • Hetch Hetchy Entrance Station
  • There are no return locations outside Yosemite

To Return a Canister by Mail

Simply place the bear canister in the mail with a mailing label and appropriate postage. Please place the mailing label on the side of the canister and not on either the top or bottom of the canister. (A label on the bottom obscures our tracking number and labels on the lid interfere with the canister locking mechanism.) Also, do not place any tape or stickers over the lid or latches on the lid as they too may interfere with normal usage (if the lid gets lost in transit we will not revoke your security deposit).

Mail canisters to:

Yosemite Conservancy
PO Box 545
Yosemite, CA 95389

Last updated: December 4, 2023

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