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    Yosemite

    National Park California

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  • Road Closures Due to El Portal Fire

    The Big Oak Flat Road between Crane Flat and the El Portal Road is temporarily closed. There is no access to Yosemite Valley via the Big Oak Flat Road or Highway 120. Tioga Road is open and accessible via Big Oak Flat and Tioga Pass Entrances. More »

  • Campground Closures Due to Fire

    Crane Flat, Bridalveil Creek, and Yosemite Creek Campgrounds are temporarily closed. More »

  • Yosemite National Park is Open

    Yosemite Valley, Glacier Point, and Wawona/Mariposa Grove areas are open and accessible via Highways 140 and 41. Tioga Road is not accessible via Highways 140 and 41 due to a fire.

Yosemite National Park Scales Back Search for Missing Hiker

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Date: June 23, 2011

Park Makes Transition to Limited Continuous Searching After Nearly One Week

Yosemite National Park has scaled down the search for missing hiker George Penca. After nearly one week of extensive searching, Park Rangers have not found any clues as to Penca’s whereabouts. Penca, from Hawthorne, California, has been missing in the area of Upper Yosemite Fall since Friday, June 17, 2011.  

Initial search efforts began on Friday night, June 17, after Penca was reported missing when he failed to return from a day hike he was on with members from his church. A full-scale operation was initiated on Saturday morning, June 18, including approximately 105 Search and Rescue personnel from around the state.  

Starting today, June 23, search efforts will transition to a limited continuous search in the area Penca was last seen. The change in search strategy was implemented after review of the continued risk of exposure for Search and Rescue personnel, as well as the lack of clues as to Penca’s whereabouts.  

Yosemite National Park is asking anyone who has been in the area of the Upper Yosemite Fall Trail who may have information on George Penca to please call the Yosemite Emergency Communication Center at 209-379-1992. Penca is 5’ 10” tall, weighs 240 pounds, and has dark brown hair, blue eyes, a stocky build. He was last seen wearing gray sweatpants with white stripes, a black t-shirt that says “D&B” across the chest, or a black tank top, and gray/blue running shoes.  
 
Agencies involved in the search for Penca include: Yosemite National Park Search and Rescue, Inyo County, Mono County, Mariposa County, Marin County, Fresno County, Tuolumne County, China Lake, Los Angeles County, Nevada County, Sierra Madre, Yosemite Search and Rescue Dog Teams, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, and California Explorer Search and Rescue.

For more information and to view a flyer on George Penca please visit: www.nps.gov/yose/upload/penca.pdf

Did You Know?

Sign language interpreter

Yosemite has a full-time sign language interpreter in the park every summer? The Yosemite Deaf Services Program began in 1979 and provides a variety of services to make sure the park is accessible for all of Yosemite's D/deaf and hard of hearing visitors. More...