Yosemite Cinema in Oakhurst offers a breathtaking VR experience of the park

OAKHURST, Calif. (KFSN) — While flames from the Washburn Fire continue to burn parts of the Yosemite National Park, Yosemite Cinema owners in Oakhurst found another option for visitors to experience the national gem – virtually.

It’s a fun outing even for families who live nearby.

“We’ve seen Yosemite a million times and it was amazing,” said Oakhurst resident Joe Leucero.

Added another resident, Ceagin Leucero:
“It’s fun, you learn a lot about the people who helped make Yosemite a thing.”

It’s an escape from reality.

The immersive technology allows you to be transported into the world of the Yosemite National Park – with angles and heights you probably wouldn’t see on a normal visit.

“You can experience hiking Mount Everest, you can experience flying through Yosemite National Park, climbing El Capitan, things you can’t do in the real world because of danger or cost. You can do here and have those adventures without leaving the cinema, ” says Yosemite Cinema co-owner Matt Sconce.

So, we took a test ride ourselves.

It was simple – we got in one of the 16 Positron voyagers or chair pods,
put the goggles on, and voila!

The 17-minute Yosemite experience is narrated by actor Bryan Cranston of Breaking Bad fame.

It felt like you were gliding over the iconic scenery.

“You smell the pine trees, you smell the campfire. You see the sparks from the campfire, as Teddy Roosevelt talks to John Muir. You see the cave paintings you fly through the valley with the mist and the waterfalls. And all of that happens in an educational and adventurous way,” says Sconce.

While the pandemic may have deprived the cinema industry, Sconce says they are excited to get more people back to the theater.

Workers will disinfect after each screening.

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