Yosemite National Park Celebrates Arrival of Hybrid Tractors Used in Yosemite Valley Floor Tours
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held in Yosemite Valley today to commemorate the arrival of four hybrid (electric/diesel) tractors that will be used in the popular Yosemite Valley Floor Tours. Acting Superintendent Dave Uberuaga and DNC Parks and Resorts at Yosemite, Inc. Chief Operating Officer Dan Jensen cut the ribbon as 60 park visitors were embarking on their tour of Yosemite Valley.
The state of the art tractors, purchased by DNC Parks and Resorts at Yosemite, Inc., at a cost of $150,000 each, pull trailers for the two-hour tour narrated by a National Park Ranger. The tractors and engines were manufactured by the International Harvester Corporation and the hybrid power systems were manufactured by Eaton Corporation. The new vehicles replaced propane powered vehicles used to pull the trailers.
“We are very proud of these new vehicles and take great pride in leading by example. Going green is incredibly important to the park,” stated Uberauga.
The new tractors will reduce emissions by 85 % and get 800 % better fuel economy than the previous vehicles. This addition complements Yosemite National Park’s fleet of 16 hybrid shuttle buses (also electric/diesel) that are used in Yosemite Valley and Wawona. Approximately 70,000 Yosemite National Park visitors take the Yosemite Valley Floor Tour each year.
Did You Know?
In Yosemite Valley, dropping over 594-foot Nevada Fall and then 317-foot Vernal Fall, the Merced River creates what is known as the “Giant Staircase.” Such exemplary stair-step river morphology is characterized by a large variability in river movement and flow, from quiet pools to the dramatic drops of the waterfalls themselves.