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yosemite Daily Report - Yosemite National Park Friday, November 30th, 2018

yosemite Daily Report - Yosemite National Park
Friday, November 30th, 2018
Today: Mostly cloudy. Near the crest, a 20 percent chance of snow showers in the morning, areas of dense fog in the afternoon. A 50 percent chance of snow showers, areas of fog in the morning. Patchy fog in the afternoon, chance of showers through the day. Breezy. Highs 37 to 43 at 5000 feet...28 to 34 at 8000 feet. West winds 25 to 30 mph over higher elevations.
Tonight: Partly cloudy. Patchy fog in the evening. Colder. Lows 23 to 31 at 5000 feet...13 to 19 at 8000 feet. Over higher elevations, southwest winds around 25 mph after midnight.
Tomorrow: Snow showers. Widespread frost in the afternoon. Very windy. Snow accumulation up to 6 inches. Highs 32 to 39 at 5000 feet...22 to 30 at 8000 feet. Southwest winds 35 to 50 mph over higher elevations
Additional Point Forecast Weather Links:
Power Outage Friday
PG&E has sent notification there will be a brief power outage Friday, November 30th at 1500 hours. The outage should last only a few minutes. The outage will affect the El Portal, Foresta, and Yosemite West areas.  (R. Hall)
Mariposa Grove Road Closed
Mariposa Grove Road (including shuttle service) has closed for the season a few days early due to snow. (J. Trust)
Debris On Roads In Ferguson Fire Footprint - Update 11/28/18
A large storm is passing through Yosemite starting today, and continuing through the weekend. Heavy rainfall is predicted between Wednesday evening through Friday. On Thursday afternoon expect periods of heavy rain. Consider planning your day to avoid driving through the Ferguson Fire footprint during this time as more intense rain may bring down significant debris onto roads. Preemptive road closures may occur on NPS and Caltrans maintained roads. Rain of all intensities can bring down loose soils, rocks, and other debris in the Ferguson Fire. Pay attention while driving even after the rain stops as debris roll-out can occur days afterwords. The areas between Cascade Falls Picnic Area to Sweetwater Creek on Highway 140/El Portal Road and between Grouse Creek and Chinquapin on Wawona Road are most prone to debris rollouts.  (G. Dickman)
Bridalveil Fall Well Drilling
Contractors will begin drilling a well for the new flush toilets at the Bridalveil Fall parking area this week. A portion of the parking lot will be closed for contractor use but this will not impact vehicle movement through the lot. This is the first on-the-ground action of the Bridalveil Fall Rehabilitation project. The well drilling should be complete by mid-December. In 2019, crews will begin work on a new accessible trail and the new comfort station.  (B. Lewis)
Tioga and Glacier Point Roads in Yosemite National Park Close for the Winter Season - Yosemite News Release November 28, 2018
The Tioga and Glacier Point Roads in Yosemite National Park are closed for the winter season. There have been several storm systems that have moved through the park over the past two weeks.
The Tioga Road is a seasonal road that closes each season, based on weather and road conditions. The road is closed from Crane Flat junction to park line at Tioga Pass, 5 miles west of Lee Vining and US 395.
The Glacier Point Road is also closed for the season, from the Yosemite Ski and Snow Board Area to Glacier Point. This section of road closes each season, based on weather and road conditions.   
A series of winter storms are expected to pass through the Yosemite Area, beginning on Wednesday, November 28, 2018 and continuing through the weekend. Snow and rain are expected throughout the park. Motorists should be prepared for winter driving conditions and possible delays.   
Yosemite National Park is open year-round with snow removal on all other roads within the park. Highway 120 West, Highway 140, and Highway 41 remain open year-round and provide access to Yosemite Valley. The Hetch Hetchy Road is open for day use throughout the winter months.
All roads within the park are subject to chain control or temporary closures due to hazardous driving conditions. All motorists are required to carry tire chains, even if their car is equipped with four-wheel drive, while driving in the park during the winter months. Chain control may go into effect at any time. The following chain control guidelines exist:
- “R-1” requires vehicles to have mud and snow tires or tire chains
- “R-2” requires vehicles to have 4-Wheel drive or tire chains
- “R-3” requires all vehicles to use tire chains
For updated 24-hour road and weather conditions for Yosemite National Park, please call 209-372-0200.  (J. Richards)
Yosemite National Park Announces the Release of the Replace Big Oak Flat Welcome Center Complex Environmental Assessment - Yosemite News Release November 27, 2018
Yosemite National Park announces the release of the Replace Big Oak Flat Welcome Center Complex Environmental Assessment (EA). The public comment period for the EA is open until December 20, 2018. The EA describes and analyzes one action alternative to improve visitor experience, address deferred maintenance, improve safety, and increase operational efficiency at the Big Oak Flat Welcome Center Complex. The preferred alternative would:
- Construct a new welcome center to unify visitor services to replace the modular building and trailer that currently house these functions
- Construct a new adequately sized comfort station to replace the aging, undersized one
- Construct a plaza to connect the new welcome center and comfort station buildings, and house visitor orientation information
- Reconfigure the existing parking lot to decrease vehicle-pedestrian conflicts and reduce congestion
- Construct a small, unpaved staff parking area along Tuolumne Grove Road to reduce congestion
- Install a sewer to connect the welcome center complex to the Hodgdon community septic system and decommission the aging septic system currently serving the facilities
-  Provide the option for the addition of a water tank and access road at a later date
Yosemite will host a public meeting on December 5, 2018 from 3 to 5 pm in the Private Dining Room at the Rush Creek Lodge (34001 California Highway 120, Groveland, CA) to provide an opportunity to learn more about the project and environmental analysis. Yosemite will also host a webinar in mid-December (tentatively December 12, 2018 from 12 noon to 1 pm); please refer to the project website identified below for date confirmation and the link to register for the webinar. 
Public participation is an important element of the planning process and we welcome your comments. Please share your written comments by December 20, 2018 via one of the following methods:
- Online (preferred method) through the Planning, Environment, and Public Comment (PEPC) website at:
- You may also mail comments (post-marked by December 20, 2018) to:
Superintendent, Yosemite National Park
Attn: Big Oak Flat Welcome Center Complex
P.O. Box 577
Yosemite National Park, CA 95389
To request printed documents (available in limited quantity) call (209) 379-1221 or e-mail The park will review comments after the public comment period closes and draft a decision document after the conclusion of agency consultation. The final decision document is expected to be completed by February 2019.
Construction for the project is planned to begin fall 2019.  (J. Richards)
Replace Big Oak Flat Welcome Center Complex EA Released
The environmental assessment for the Wawona Wastewater Treatment System project has been released for public comment until December 20th. The EA is available at
The park will host a public meeting on December 5th from 3 to 5 pm in the Rush Creek Lodge Private Dining Room. The final decision document is expected by February 2019 with construction anticipated to start in fall 2019.  (N. Daniele)
YARTS 2019 Free Day Schedule
January 21, 2019 (MLK Jr. Birthday) - Hwy 140 only
April 20 & 21, 2019 (Earth Day weekend) - Hwy 140 only
May 26 & 27, 2019 (Memorial Day Weekend) - Hwy 140 (from Merced), Hwy 41 (from Fresno), Hwy 120 (from Sonora)
July 4, 2019 (Independence Day) - all corridors
August 25, 2019 (National Park Service Birthday) - all corridors
September 21, 2019 (National Public Lands Day-Observed) - Hwy 140 (Merced, Mariposa, El Portal); Hwy 120 (Sonora, Groveland); Hwy 395/120 (Mammoth Lakes, Lee Vining, Tuolumne Meadows)
November 9 & 10, 2019 (Veteran's Day Weekend) - Hwy 140 only
If you use YARTS to commute, please plan ahead. Buses typically leave Merced and Yosemite Valley full on free service days.  (C. Kelly)
Room for Rent
Spacious room for rent in a beautiful, large 4+ bed/2.5 bath home, nestled in the hills off the 140, near the border of Mariposa and Midpines. Home is on 5 quiet acres, surrounded by great views which you can see from the bedroom windows. $450/month per room, plus a portion of utilities. Large kitchen, private bath, fireplace and indoor onsite laundry. Deposit and references required. Email if you're interested.  (K. Indigo)
Mach 8 Biological will be weed wacking and hydroseeding in Yosemite Valley  beginning on Saturday November 31 and continuing until Dec 15.
 Impacts to traffic will be minimized to the extent feasible, but traffic control and one-way traffic will be in effect and cause minor delays. All activities are subject to weather delays. Thank you for accommodating this re-vegetation work.  (T. Kuhn)
Chief Ranger until December 1
Ed Dunlavey 372-0501
Administration Division Chief until mid-February
Brendan Hickey: 379-1042 or
Physical Science & Landscape Ecology Branch Chief until further notice
Greg Stock: 379-1420
Budget Officer (Comptroller) until mid-February
Christopher Vansickle: 379-1872 or
Emergency Services Program Manager until December 9
Chip Griffin (EMS /Clinic): 372-4637, John Dill (SAR/PSAR): 372-0216
Supervisory Exhibit Specialist (Historic Restoration) until December 16
Matt Bablitch 379-1053 or
Park Botanist until further notice
Garrett Dickman: 379-3282