Daily Report – Yosemite National Park
Thursday, November 2, 2023
Yosemite National Park Zone Forecast
Today: Mostly sunny. Highs 50 to 64. Southeast winds up to 10 mph shifting to the west in the afternoon.
Tonight: Partly cloudy in the evening then becoming mostly cloudy. Lows 32 to 46. Southeast winds up to 10 mph.
Tomorrow: Mostly sunny. Highs 48 to 62. South winds up to 10 mph shifting to the west in the afternoon.
Additional Point Forecast Weather Links:
Yosemite Valley | Wawona | Tuolumne Meadows | Glacier Point | Big Oak Flat | Hetch Hetchy | El Portal | Mariposa | Badger Pass
NEW & HAPPENING TODAY
Dia de Los Muertos at Sals’s Night Nov 2nd
Come celebrate Dia de Los Muertos at the EP Community Hall this Thursday November 2nd! The festivities start at 5pm with access to a community ofrenda table where you can celebrate loved ones who have passed. Please bring a photo of them if you would like to place them on the ofrenda. There will be other activities like face painting, crafts, and a piñata! Hosted by Yosemite Employee Association (YEA) and BIPOC Employee Resource Group. ¡Nos vemos! (M. Gutierrez)
Shakespeare in Yosemite Auditions
Interested in acting? Singing? Dancing? Hanging out with great people? Then come out to the Curry Village Amphitheater on Saturday, December 2nd, at 10AM to help plan Shakespeare in Yosemite 2024.
The show will be Midsummer Night’s Dream. Our Yosemite crew will play the locals who put on a small play-within-the-play. Our UC Merced partners will work on the main show, though there will be opportunities for overlap. Yosemites can rehearse in the Valley, El Portal, Mariposa – whatever makes sense for whoever ends up joining. Performances will be April 25-28, 2024.
Meet Saturday December 2nd, 10 am, Curry Village Amphitheater.
Be ready to read scenes from the play. If you are musical, prepare a short song to sing or play on your instrument.
Go to https://yosemiteshakes.ucmerced.edu or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. (M. Roubal)
Kudos to Kyle Arsenault
We really appreciate Kyle Arsenault and high voltage staff getting a large piece of equipment on top of the archives to fix our HVAC. Like all YOSE projects, the way was blocked, required going above and beyond just to get the lift close enough to lift the piece. And Mark Jones lent us an industrial dehumidifier for several months to bring down the relative humidity in the collections. Thank you all for your help. (P. Rogers)
Property/Fleet Branch Chief, Reed Wilson, has accepted another job and will be leaving Yosemite. If you would like to sign his arrowhead it will on the service counter in the warehouse. (L. Perez)
Yosemite Medical Clinic
We continue to scale down our service between now and new year to accommodate staff vacation, training and system changes.
For primary care patients who needs to be seen soon, please either make an appointment to be seen this week or the 2nd week of December when Dr. Irwin-Warren returns to Yosemite Medical Clinic.
Between Nov 9 – 17, there will be only urgent care service for out of pocket fees.
More details will be provided next week.
Please call our Nurse Manager, Santhana Webb with any questions or concerns. Thanks for your understanding. (S. Webb)
Yosemite Valley Welcome Center is Open
We are excited to announce the opening of the Yosemite Valley Welcome Center (aka “the welco”) as the primary visitor information station for Yosemite Valley. The welcome center, located at the south end of the Village Store complex (in the space formerly containing the Village Sport Shop) is open 9 am to 5 pm daily. NPS rangers and volunteers will staff an information desk while YC employees will staff a bookstore and provide information about YC programs.
The Yosemite Valley Visitor Center is in the process of transforming into the Yosemite Exploration Center. The exploration center will contain YC’s bookstore as well as expanded exhibits. The bookstore is open daily 9 am to 5 pm. The first portion of exhibits will open in late November.
The new Welcome Center and the Yosemite Exploration Center are thanks to the generous support of the Yosemite Conservancy and its donors. (E. Weeks)
Fight the Flu Friday (on-going)
YMC is partnering with Mariposa County Health and Human Services Agency to provide free flu vaccine during the next few Fridays from 9am – 12 noon and 1 – 3pm until the limited doses run out. The free flu vaccine supplied by the county is first come, first served and no appointment needed. The patient should bring an ID that shows date of birth. The county vaccine is approved for use in persons aged 6 months and older. For 65 and older, the Clinic provides high potent flu vaccine with fee. Please check with your insurance or pay out of pocket. Clinic is closed for walk-in during Fight the Flu Friday campaign. (S. Webb)
Roadside Ditch Maintenance Hetch Hetchy
Annual roadside ditch maintenance on Hetch Hetchy road from the park boundary to O’Shaughnessy camp. Traffic control will be in place with one-lane closures around the work areas. Delays will not exceed 10 minutes and average around 5 minutes. (E. Dunlavey)
Remove Vehicles from ESC/gas pump parking
There will be a private ceremony on Saturday, November 4th. Please move all vehicles from the ESC/gas pump parking lot to facilitate parking for the event by 8:00 am the morning of Saturday, November 4th. (K. Owenby)
GIS Day November 6
Join us for Yosemite GIS Day 2023 on Monday, November 6, 1-3 pm on Teams! (This event has been changed to virtual only.) GIS Day is an annual event to showcase geospatial projects and activities at the park to interested staff, partners, and cooperators. GIS Day presentations will cover some new uses and applications of GIS at Yosemite from the past year:
Yosemite Observer Dashboard (Adina Zucker, recent Data Visualization Intern)
Published last spring, the Yosemite Observer Dashboard in ArcGIS Online Experience Builder features live climate, stream, and air quality data from monitoring stations across the park as well as a new map layer for fire danger ratings.
Road Closure & Incident Alerts Application: Streamlining Communications (Erica Cole, NPS Facility Transporation Planner, and Team)
This year Yosemite participated in a service-wide pilot of a road closures data feed published through Department of Transportation and integrated on NPS.gov web maps.
Assessing Rockfall Hazard above The Ahwahnee (Greg Stock, Park Geologist)
To assess a concerning new crack discovered on the cliff above The Ahwahnee in August, geologists used ground-based LiDAR and other geospatial inputs to estimate rockfall runout and determine whether the hotel was at risk.
Presentations will be recorded. Email email@example.com to request a virtual (Teams) invite. (E. Hale)
Mariposa Grove Road Closure Extended for Culvert Replacement thru November 3rd
The Mariposa Grove Road Closure will be extended to all pedestrian and vehicular traffic thru November 3rd to complete the road repairs and then reopen to public traffic on November 4th. However, the Mariposa Grove will remain open to pedestrian traffic, via the Washburn trail which you can connect with at the far back end of the South Entrance parking lot. (M. Pieper)
Wawona Road Hazardous Fuel Removal
Tribal crews and contractors are removing hazardous fuels along Wawona Road from the South Entrance to the park boundary at Mt. Raymond Road. Removing hazardous fuels in the form of small trees and previously downed logs will support fire fighters to implement an interagency prescribed fire that will ultimately lead to better protection of the Mariposa Grove and the communities of Fish Camp and Wawona from high severity fires. Delays up to 15 minutes may be expected. Please slow down and watch for workers along the road. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions. (G. Dickman)
Yosemite Valley Shuttle Bus Stop Improvements
The NPS contractor continues site demolition and preparation in Curry Village (Orchard Parking) and at Upper Pines and Lower Pines campground stops on the Happy Isles Loop. Work sites are being prepared for paving. Disruption and delays in traffic circulation are to be expected. The contractor is authorized to conduct traffic control operations Monday through Thursday. This work will continue until mid-December, weather permitting. (J. Donovan)
Ackerson Meadow Restoration Project
The long-planned Ackerson Meadow Restoration Project, on Evergreen Road, is set to begin. Be aware of potential truck traffic in the area between August 14 and October 31.
The project goal is to eliminate excessive soil erosion, slow water loss, and reverse loss of water-loving plants and animals and impacts to endangered species. To do this, a contractor will completely fill the century-old human-caused erosion gully that is now more than 3 miles long, and up to 14 feet deep by 100 feet wide. Revegetation of the area will be completed using more than 425,000 wetland container plants and 700 pounds of native plant seeds. This project is planned for completion in spring 2025, and is a partnership of American Rivers, Stanislaus National Forest, Yosemite Conservancy, and Yosemite National Park. Learn more: https://go.nps.gov/ackerson. For questions, contact email@example.com. (T. Kuhn)
Tioga Road Delays
Crews are continuing to complete intermittent road repairs on the Tioga Road between Tamarack Flat Campground entrance road and Little Blue Slide. Over the next couple of months there will be multiple crews working at various locations along the Tioga Road corridor. The Crews will be working Monday thru Friday, from 6AM to 6PM with alternating one-way traffic control and up to 15-minute delays. These Tioga Road delays will continue thru November. Please contact Michael Pieper, with any questions or concerns at (209) 200-1131. (M. Peiper)
Mist Trail Repair July 10th – November 2nd
The Lower Mist Trail – from the John Muir Trail (JMT) junction (just uphill from the Vernal Fall Footbridge) to the top of Vernal Fall – will be closed Monday -Thursday between 7:00am and 3:30pm.
The trail will remain open on weekends. It is expected to be open overnight, however there may be certain days when trail crew is not able to make it safe to open overnight. In that case, the gates will remain closed, and signs will be posted at the two closure gates that the trail is closed.
Hikers and backpackers headed to Little Yosemite Valley, Half Dome, and points beyond from the trailhead at Happy Isles may hike uphill on the Mist Trail if they reach the Mist Trail/JMT junction by 7:00am, Monday through Friday. Otherwise, they must hike the JMT. (W. Weaver)
The Merced Grove is Closed for Restoration
Giant sequoias are adapted to frequent, low-intensity fire and depend on fire for reproduction. Frequent fires reduce fire intensity by thinning the forest of small and unhealthy trees and reducing the accumulation of dead branches and trees. But over the past century, fires were suppressed, and drought and insects killed millions of trees in Yosemite. In the Merced Grove, there is limited sequoia regeneration and fuel loading has increased to dangerous levels. Currently, we cannot safely introduce fire without first mechanically removing fuels first. Since 2020, wildfires have killed almost 20% of mature giant sequoias across their range due to extreme fuel loading, and we aim to prevent that outcome in the Merced Grove. Therefore, we are removing small diameter conifers, trees posing a hazard to firefighters and containment lines, and dead and downed wood to reduce wildfire risk to the sequoias and firefighters as preparation for the first prescribed fire in and around the grove. The grove will be closed for 2.5 months during the restoration for visitor and worker safety. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or for access. (G. Dickman)
Dispatch Expansion Project
The Dispatch Expansion project is converting most of the El Portal Warehouse lobby into office space for the Emergency Communications (Dispatch) Center. The lobby elevator is off-limits except in case of emergency. The lobby stairs are still blocked off and the rest of the lobby area is closed unless you are involved with the project. Warehouse occupants and visitors need to use alternate means of ingress/egress until the re-construction of the stairs is finished. Do not enter through the RMS building unless you work there. To access the Dispatch office area, follow the signs in through the Trails area door just inside the fence/gate. Apologies for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience. Contact Nicole Belle Isle, Project Manager, for more information. (N. Belle Isle)
Sugar Pine Floodplain Restoration Through November 10
The Vegetation and Ecological Restoration Branch will be conducting restoration work in the floodplain south of Sugar Pine Bridge from August 14 to November 10. This project will excavate fill from historic channels to reactivate the floodplain, provide habitat for aquatic wildlife and plants, and restore natural hydrology. This project is a recommended action from the Merced Wild and Scenic River Management Plan to mitigate the effects of the historic but undersized Sugar Pine Bridge on the Merced River. Earth moving machinery, including excavators and dump trucks, will be operating in this area. Please ask that the public stay out of this area for their safety. To learn more about Merced River restoration visit: https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/nature/mercedriverrestoration.htm (A. Puchkoff)
Y8 Fuel Station Down
The Y8 gas station is currently down. For gas needs in the meantime, please call the garage from 8 am – 5 pm, 7 days a week at 209-372-1060 to schedule a fill until further notice. We’ll update when the station is back up and running. (C. Layman)
Valley Shuttle Construction Impacts
Valley Shuttle stops 19, 4 and 2 are out of service due to construction. (C. Layman)
Road work on Wawona and Glacier Point Road
Park Forestry crews will be working on Hwy 41 Wawona Road North of Henness Ridge Road through the end of November. Crews will also be working along Glacier Point Road intermittently through the end of November. Anticipate 20 minute delays, and please keep speeds slow while traveling through the work zone. Thanks for your patience. (B. See)