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 »
National Register in Yosemite
The National Register of Historic Places (or simply the National Register, for short) is the official list of the nation’s historic places worthy of preservation. Within the National Register are National Historic Landmarks, which is the highest distinction possible within the National Register framework. Authorized by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Register coordinates and supports public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect America's historic and archeological resources. More than 80,000 properties accounting for 1.4 million individual resources have been listed on the National Register, with approximately 2,500 properties listed as National Historic Landmarks. In order to be listed, properties must meet conditions related to significance, integrity, and age. The property must be associated with events, developments, or people that are significant in the past; the property must retain its historic integrity by maintaining a preponderance of its historic appearance, design and materials; and, with few exceptions, a property must be at least 50 years old. To be officially listed in the National Register, the nomination must first receive concurrence from the State Historic Preservation Office and then from the Keeper of the National Register.
Many of Yosemite's properties are significant for their rustic architecture. In fact, Yosemite can be said to be the birthplace of the NPS Rustic architecture style. The first NPS Landscape Design Office was established at Yosemite in 1920. This office conducted planning, design, and design review of all Western parks. It was here that the first NPS designers developed a unique style specifically for park structures. Designers were influenced by the architectural movements of the time period but also found inspiration in structures that already existed in Yosemite, such as the LeConte Memorial Lodge (1903), Parsons Lodge (1915), and Curry Village buildings, including the Lounge building (1904). Many of Yosemite's structures are classic examples of the NPS Rustic style and are inconspicuous, in part, because they were designed to blend seamlessly with the natural setting.
Yosemite's historic properties are managed by professionals within the Resources Management and Science Division's branch of History, Architecture & Landscapes and branch of Anthropology. Collectively, Yosemite's personnel have backgrounds in historic architecture, historic landscape architecture, history, historic preservation, archeology, and cultural anthropology. Ongoing work related to managing Yosemite's historic properties includes advocating for the preservation of historic character within historic areas, identifying and nominating properties that have not been evaluated for listing, and mitigating impacts when non-historic modifications are necessary within historic areas.
National Register Trivia
Yosemite’s National Historic Landmarks
Read profiles of Yosemite’s National Historic Landmarks from Architecture in the Parks: A National Historic Landmark Theme Study by Laura Soullière Harrison, published in 1986:
Websites for More Information
Did You Know?
At the east end of El Portal, just west of Yosemite National Park’s boundary, changing river gradients, glacial history, and powerful floods have created a boulder bar with boulders much larger than typically found in such deposits. This is no ordinary boulder bar, however, for it contains massive boulders over a meter in diameter and weighing many tons.