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There's always something fun to do with great events in California's Gateway to Yosemite.  To see what's going on, visit our Calendar of Events

For news and information about what's going on, visit our Press Room. For other news including the latest specials and promotions, visit our Specials Page    or check out the Newsletter Archive. You can sign up for our Newsletter List and we'll send your our monthly mailing with the latest events, news and discounts. For up-to-date information on Yosemite, check out the Daily Report below, straight from the National Park Service.


Daily Report - Yosemite National Park

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

 

WEATHER

Yosemite National Park Zone Forecast

Today: Sunny...breezy. Highs 61 to 69 at 5000 feet...47 to 55 at 8000 feet. Over higher elevations...southwest winds around 25 mph with gusts to around 45 mph in the afternoon.

Tonight: Mostly clear. Breezy...colder. Lows 35 to 45 at 5000 feet...27 to 35 at 8000 feet. Over higher elevations... Southwest winds around 25 mph in the evening. Gusts up to 50 mph over higher elevations.

Wednesday: Sunny. Highs 56 to 66 at 5000 feet...41 to 51 at 8000 feet.

Wednesday Night: Mostly clear. Colder. Lows 32 to 42 at 5000 feet...21 to 31 at 8000 feet.

Thursday: Sunny. Highs 55 to 65 at 5000 feet...38 to 48 at 8000 feet.

Thursday Night And Friday: Clear. Lows 35 to 45 at 5000 feet... 23 to 33 at 8000 feet. Highs 58 to 68 at 5000 feet...41 to 51 at 8000 feet.

Friday Night: Mostly clear. Lows 36 to 46 at 5000 feet...24 to 34 at 8000 feet.

Saturday: Sunny. Highs 59 to 69 at 5000 feet...43 to 53 at 8000 feet.

Saturday Night: Mostly clear. Lows 36 to 45 at 5000 feet... 24 to 34 at 8000 feet.

Sunday: Mostly sunny. Highs 51 to 61 at 5000 feet...36 to 46 at 8000 feet.

Sunday Night And Monday: Mostly clear. Breezy. Lows 35 to 43 at 5000 feet...23 to 31 at 8000 feet. Highs 52 to 62 at 5000 feet... 36 to 46 at 8000 feet.

 

Additional Point Forecast Weather Links:

Yosemite Valley  |  Wawona  |  Tuolumne Meadows  |  Glacier Point |  Big Oak Flat  |  Hetch Hetchy  |  El Portal  |  Mariposa

 

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NEW AND HAPPENING TODAY

 

Ansel Adams Gallery Closed Today

The Ansel Adams Gallery will be closed Monday, March 30 through April 3 while we move out of the Wilderness Center and into our newly rehabilitated building.  We will continue to offer our regularly scheduled camera walks and classes during this time.  Thank you for your support and we hope to see you in the gallery. (TAAG)

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Chris Jefferson's Retirement Party is Today!

Don't forget to join us for a potluck today to celebrate Chris Jefferson's retirement from 11:30am to 1pm in the RMS picnic area outside the El Portal Warehouse (Large Conference Room is reserved in case of rain). Stop by to share some food and wish Chris well on his next adventure. (K. Kirby) 

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New Hetch Hetchy Day Use Hours

Starting April 1st the new day use hours for  the Hetch Hetchy Road are 8am to 7pm. (C. Flores)

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Annual Spring Bear Ceremony in the Village of Ahwahnee, Saturday April 4

The American Indian Council of Mariposa County's Annual Bear Ceremony will be held Saturday April 4 at the Village of Ahwahnee behind the Valley Visitor Center. Please refrain from parking on either side of Village Drive near the cemetery or near the valley gas pumps from Friday afternoon until Sunday morning to facilitate parking for the event. (J. Hoeflich)

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Yosemite West Water Boil Notice

Yosemite West Residents boil your water before using. Failure to follow this advisory could result in stomach or intestinal illness. Due to a water main repair, please expect to experience a water outage on Tuesday March 31, 2015 from approximately 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Upon return of normal water service, the State Water Resources Control Board, Division of Drinking Water in conjunction with Yosemite West Water System are advising residents of Yosemite West Water System to use boiled tap water or bottled water for drinking and cooking purposes as a safety precaution. DO NOT DRINK THE WATER WITHOUT BOILING IT FIRST. Bring all water to a boil, let it boil for one (1) minute, and let it cool before using, or use bottled water. Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking and food preparation until further notice. This is the preferred method to assure that the water is safe to drink. We will inform you when tests show that water is safe to drink and you no longer need to boil your water. We anticipate resolving the problem within 24 to 48 hours.

For more information call:Water Utility contact: Mariposa County Public Works Department at 209-966-5356 State Water Resources Control Board – Drinking Water Field Operations Branch- District Office at [(559) 447-3300]. (J. Mock)

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Endangered Sierra Nevada Bighorn Sheep Restored to Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks

Recently Completed Cooperative Effort Included California Department of Fish and Wildlife, National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

 

Media Contacts: Scott Gediman, Kari Cobb, and Ashley Mayer (Yosemite National Park) 209-372-0248; Dana Dierkes (Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks) 559-565-3131; Andrew Hughan (California Department of Fish and Wildlife) 916-322-8944; Deb Schweizer (Inyo National Forest) 760-873-2427; Pete Bartelme (Yosemite Conservancy) 415-664-1503

 

A multiagency operation was recently concluded that returned two herds of endangered bighorn sheep to locations in Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks.  The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), Yosemite, Sequoia, and Kings Canyon National Parks, Inyo National Forest, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, worked together on the complex operation in the Sierra Nevada.  

 

Between March 26 and March 29, 2015, nine ewes (females) and three rams (males) were moved from the Inyo National Forest and Sequoia National Park to the Cathedral Range in Yosemite National Park. In addition, seven ewes were moved to the Laurel Creek area of Sequoia National Park; the CDFW will attempt to move an additional three rams to that area on March 30.

 

The Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep is the only federally endangered mammal in Yosemite, Sequoia, and Kings Canyon.  This animal was listed in 2000 after the population plunged to a low of about 100 individuals.  The population has since increased to over 600, which marks an important milestone towards their recovery.  Prior to the arrival of western settlers, which brought unregulated hunting and diseases in their livestock, bighorn sheep populations likely numbered in the thousands.

 

This latest chapter in the multi-year recovery effort involved the capture of Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep in wilderness areas on these federally managed lands.  CDFW staff and volunteers, as well as veterinarians, biologists, and staff from other agencies, assessed the health and safety of the animals throughout the entire process.  Each animal was fitted with a radio collar and a Global Positioning System (GPS) collar in order to track its movements over the next several years.  

 

The newly released bighorn sheep are expected to thrive in their new homes because both of these historically occupied areas have superb summer habitat with adequate forage, are close enough to other Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep to provide the potential for connectivity among herds, and are far enough from most domestic sheep grazing areas to provide a buffer from potential disease transmission. 

 

“This is a legacy event for Yosemite National Park and the bighorn sheep,” said Don Neubacher, Yosemite National Park Superintendent.  “Additionally, this is one of the Signature Centennial projects for the National Park Service and we are ecstatic to see bighorn sheep in the Cathedral Range for the first time in more than 100 years.” 

 

“This project would not have been possible without the leadership of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and strong interagency cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service,” said Woody Smeck, Superintendent of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. 

 

“With this week’s reintroductions, we now have bighorn distributed throughout all geographic areas identified as critical habitat in the Recovery Plan,” said Tom Stephenson, leader of the Recovery Program with CDFW. 

 

Yosemite Conservancy funded equipment and experts to bring the new herd into Yosemite National Park, as well as the GPS collars to track the animals’ movement and location.  Over the past 20 years, Yosemite Conservancy has funded nearly $630,000 to help protect bighorn sheep by supporting research, translocation efforts, radio and GPS collars.  The Sierra Nevada Bighorn Sheep Foundation and the Wild Sheep Foundation funded the translocation into Sequoia National Park. 

 

“Bighorn sheep are a true symbol of wilderness and represent the need to protect wild lands,” said Frank Dean, Yosemite Conservancy President.  “With the reintroduction, visitors will experience a wilderness similar to that found in the days of John Muir, when large alpine wildlife was abundant.” 

 

Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep are well known for their large size, strength, and ability to negotiate precipitous terrain.  Adult males, called rams, stand over three feet tall at the shoulder and weigh up to 220 pounds; females, called ewes, weigh up to 155 pounds.  Both rams and ewes have permanent horns; rams’ horns are massive and coiled, whereas ewes’ horns are shorter with less curvature.  Bighorn sheep display a range of body coloration, from dark brown to almost white, and have a large white rump patch and a short, dark tail.  Rams live to be 10 to 12 years old, and ewes live to be 12 to 17 years old.  During breeding season (rut), bighorn rams compete for their right to mate with ewes.  Dominance behavior includes kicking, butting, neck wrestling, and dramatic horn clashes that sound like thunder.  Breeding generally takes place in November.  Starting at two years old, ewes give birth to one lamb between late April and mid-June.  Mothers typically wean their lambs by five months of age.  The lambs become independent of their mothers when they are about one year old.  (K. Cobb)

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Wawona Campground Update

On April 3rd, the Wawona campground will open the back loops (B&C) to first come first served campers for the weekend. Starting on April 6th, the campground will go back on reservation for the remainder of the summer season. (C. Barend)

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Symphonic Celebration of Yosemite - Mariposa Symphony Orchestra Press Release

On April 25th and 26th the Mariposa Symphony Orchestra commemorates the 125th Anniversary of Yosemite National Park's 1890 creation with special concerts in Yosemite and Mariposa.  Renowned Cellist Ira Lehn returns to perform with the orchestra as soloist in Camille Saint-Saëns' Cello Concerto #1 in a, opus 33 - the very piece in which Mr. Lehn made his professional solo debut 64 years ago in 1951 with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Maestro Eugene Ormandy.  Mr. Lehn has previously performed the Dvorak Cello Concerto and Brahms Double Concerto with the MSO in 2011 and 2013.

 

The concerts will open with Jean Sibelius' Symphony #3 in C, opus 52.   It’s considered one of the Finnish master's most radiantly beautiful symphonies, leading MSO Founder/Conductor Les Marsden to describe the work as “the music of nature unchained.  As such, it’s right at home in Yosemite.”  The concerts will conclude with the world-premiere performances of Marsden’s new large-scale symphonic work Yosemite!, composed to commemorate the 1890 establishment of Yosemite National Park.  The third (of four) orchestral tone-poems in his large-scale “American Anniversaries” cycle to be premiered both in Mariposa and Yosemite, Yosemite! is Marsden’s depiction of the sites and sights, sounds, wildlife – and even historic events of the iconic national park.

 

Major sections of the sprawling 30-minute Yosemite! include “Prelude to Dawn: the Giants of Mariposa Grove” – which depicts not only the majestic sequoias but also human giants such as their protector Galen Clark, “Chickaree, Steller’s Jay and the Black Bear’s Lament,”  “Go West, Young Muir,” and “1962: Yosemite Valley, Late Summer at Twilight” in which Marsden brings the famed Glacier Point Firefall back to life, if only through suggestive musical re-creation.  The “Firefall” section includes the words of the dual callers and hints of the two very famous tunes associated with the nightly experience.  The Firefall ended on January 25 1968, after nearly a century of on-and-off-again displays through the decades.  Introducing, intertwining throughout and concluding the piece are depictions of various aspects of Yosemite’s water – the defining, creating, shaping and attractive source without which there would be no Yosemite.   Included are orchestral portraits of Illilouette Falls, the high country Tuolumne River in late autumn, Yosemite Falls and even “Ke-Ko-Too-Yem and Tissiak’s Tears” – better known as the legend of Sleeping Waters (Mirror Lake) and the tears on Half Dome’s face.

 

The MSO’s Sunday, April 26th 2:00 Ahwahnee Hotel matinee concert is offered free of charge, first-come in partnership with the cooperation of the National Park Service, Yosemite National Park and Superintendent Don Neubacher, Delaware North Parks and Resorts at Yosemite (President Dan Jensen) and the Ahwahnee Hotel (Manager Brett Archer.)  The concert will also be performed on Saturday, April 25 at 7:00 pm in the Fiester Auditorium of Mariposa County High School.  Tickets for that concert only are $6 for adults/$4 for students and may be purchased from the Mariposa County Arts Council (209) 966-3155.  Tickets for the Mariposa (Fiester) Concert (only) are also available from the Mariposa County Visitors Center (209) 966-7081 across from Miners Roadhouse at the north end of downtown Mariposa.  Full concert information: http://tinyurl.com/MariposaSO (L. Marsden)

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Easter Egg Hunt at Valley School Saturday

The Yosemite Lion's Easter Egg Hunt will take place at the Yosemite Valley School this Saturday, April 4th.  The hunt will begin at 10:00AM.  We will have two search areas, one for ages four and under, and the other area for ages five and above.  (J. Gover)

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Welcome to our Acting Cultural Anthropologist and American Indian Liaison, Mike Turek

The Division of Resources Management and Science is pleased to introduce Mike Turek, the Acting Cultural Anthropologist and American Indian Liaison. Mike is on a detail from the Six Rivers National Forest in Eureka, California, where he has worked as the Tribal Relations Program Manager since January 2010.  He previously worked for the Forest Service as the Regional Supervisor for the Division of Subsistence, Alaska Department of Fish and Game in Juneau, Alaska.

 

Mike is the coauthor of the book American Indians & National Parks (University of Arizona Press, 1998) which details specific relationships between native peoples and national parks. He is looking forward to working with Yosemite and its traditionally associated American Indian tribes and groups. (B. Lefler)

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Seeking Housemate

Two NPS employees seeking 3rd housemate in Midpines. Large house with mostly new appliances and wood burning stove.  Spacious house with large deck on 7 acres. Room for gardening and storage. 10 min. from Mariposa, off East Whitlock.  $400/month plus electric and internet.  No smokers, pets negotiable.  Credit check. Email:  Brye Lefler at blplantsman@gmail.com (B. Lefler)

 

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RECENT NEWS

 

National Park Service and National Park Foundation Launch #Findyourpark, Encouraging People to Connect with and Celebrate our National Parks and Public Lands - WASO News Release

Michelle Obama and Laura Bush to Serve as Honorary Co-Chairs to Celebrate the National Park Service Centennial in 2016

The National Park Service and the National Park Foundation today announced the launch of Find Your Park, a public awareness and education campaign celebrating the milestone centennial anniversary of the National Park Service in 2016 and setting the stage for the  next 100 years. First Lady Michelle Obama and Mrs. Laura Bush will serve as honorary co-chairs to promote the celebration of the 2016 centennial and to encourage people to connect with their favorite parks and public lands. First Lady Michelle Obama recently filmed her Find Your Park story, highlighting President’s Park, home to the White House, and her family's connection to one of the newest national parks, Pullman National Monument in Chicago.

...

Read more here (K. Oppen)

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Campgrounds Update

Upper Pines returned to reservations on Monday, March 23. 

North Pines will open Monday, March 30. It is on reservations and already sold out.

Lower Pines will open Monday, April 6. It is also on reservations and already sold out.

 

Please send visitors inquiring about the Pines Campgrounds to the Campground Reservations Office to check availability. Do not send people directly to any of the Pines Campgrounds.

 

Camp 4 is currently first come, first served and self-registration at the Camp 4 kiosk.

Hodgdon Meadow Campground is currently first come, first served and self registration at that site.

Wawona Campground is currently first come, first served and self registration at that site.

 

You may refer visitors/staff to the automated Campground Status line: 209-372-0266. You may also provide them with our public line 209-372-8502. (E. Bissmeyer)

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Private Rental

Studio with washer and dryer, propane heat. Nonsmokers only; no pets. $550 month; deposit $300. 4934 Triangle Road (just off from Hwy 140). Call Carole @ (209) 966-6748.​ (Y.Radanovich)

 

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CONSTRUCTION UPDATE

 

Fire Alarm Installation for the Valley and El Portal Daycare Facilities

Starting Monday night March 16th, crews will begin updating the fire alarm system in the El Portal and Valley Daycare Facilities.  So if you see lights on in the daycare, please understand that it will be crews working between March 16th and March 31st.  They will start working in the El Portal Daycare for the first 6 days and then move to the Valley Daycare.  Crews will be working nights and weekends over this 2-week time period to minimize impacts to these operations.  If you have any questions or concerns please contact Michael Pieper (209) 200-1131 or Keasha Blew (209) 325-6386. (M. Pieper)

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Update For Big Oak Flat Tunnel Repairs

Construction crews have had a slow start, but are now planning to start with the actual road delays on Monday morning, March 16th with single lane traffic control. They will be installing portable traffic lights and we are trying to keep the delays to a minimum, so the delays will vary, but should not exceed the maximum delays noted below:

 

Sunday evenings from 10:00 p.m. to Friday afternoons at 4:30 p.m.

-10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m., 2 hour delays

-6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., 15 minute delays 

-8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., 30 minute delays

 

 The project is still scheduled for completion by Memorial Day, 2015. (M. Pieper)

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West Yosemite Lodge Parking Aims to Open by Memorial Day

Starting the week of March 16, 2015, park crews will begin construction of a 300-car parking area west of Yosemite Lodge. This site currently accommodates transit bus and oversized RV parking. The West Yosemite Lodge parking project will provide additional day-use parking and help alleviate traffic congestion and crowding in Yosemite Valley as described in the Merced River Plan.

The parking area design retains vegetated islands between rows of gravel parking spaces. This spring, park crews will import crushed aggregate base rock and facilitate opening the parking area prior to Memorial Day weekend. In 2016/2017, a contractor will install wheel stops and split rail fencing, coat the primary access driveways and outermost circulation loop with asphalt, build hardened pedestrian pathways, and construct a comfort station and bus stop. Temporary portable toilets will be available during the first phase of construction. There are no roadway delays anticipated. Please contact Michael Pieper (209-200-1131) or Jim Donovan (209-379-1450) with questions or concerns. (L. Acree)

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Temporary Safety Closures of Roads After El Portal Fire

In order to maintain the safety of park visitors, community members, and allow fire management operations to continue unimpeded, the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park has closed the following areas until further notice is given.

 

The Old Coulterville Road is closed to motor vehicles from the Flying Spur intersection to the park’s boundary with Stanislaus National Forest.

 

The Foresta Road is closed to motor vehicles at Foresta Falls to the park’s boundary with Stanislaus National Forest.  It is also closed to motor vehicles in El Portal at the intersection of Granite Street to the park’s boundary with Stanislaus National Forest. (K. Killian)

 

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