Tioga & Glacier Point Roads Closed for the Winter
The Tioga Road (Highway 120 through the park) and Glacier Point Road are closed due to snow; they usually reopen late May or June. You can check on current road conditions by calling 209/372-0200 (press 1 then 1). More »
Winter Wind Valentine
February 15, 2013
Some travelers to Yosemite this winter may be surprised to find something besides snow in the air. Pollen from the incense cedar (Calocedrus decurrens) is flying far and wide this February. All conifers are wind pollinated, but the incense cedar is our early leader in this annual love fest. The strategy of wind pollination requires the production of massive amounts of pollen to get the job done. This is why the vast majority of airborne allergens are pollen. However, the reactions associated with incense cedar pollen are typically mild if noticed at all. The pollen is produced in the yellow-green male cones which developed on the tips of some branches in the fall. They should be easy to spot along any trail in Yosemite Valley. The goal is for the wind to carry some of this pollen to the inconspicuous female cones which grow on the same trees and will mature by late summer.
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Did You Know?
Natural fires in Yosemite are often no more than a single burning snag (standing dead tree) or a slow moving, low intensity fire that cleans underbrush from the forest floor. These fires prevent unwanted fires by removing accumulating forest debris that can fuel a larger fire in hot, dry conditions.