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Yosemite National Park Waterfalls Flowing Again

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Date: November 19, 2012

Weekend Storm System Produces Just under 2 Inches of Rain in Yosemite Valley

Yosemite Falls, Bridalveil Fall, and other waterfalls in Yosemite Valley are flowing again after a series of storms over the weekend produced just under two inches of rain in Yosemite Valley. Yosemite Falls, which has been dry for several months due to an exceptionally dry year, is flowing again for the first time since mid-July. The park recorded one of the driest years on record, and the driest winter since 2007.

"To see Bridalveil Fall going so strong is such a beautiful sight," stated Don Neubacher, Yosemite National Park Superintendent. "After such a dry period, seeing the waterfalls flowing again is spectacular."

Snow levels remained high over the weekend, at about the 8,000 foot level. The park experienced the most significant storm of the season so far, which helped saturate extremely dry soils. The level of the Merced River, measured at the Happy Isles Gauging Station, had dipped to below four cubic feet per second (cfs) in October. This low level is very rare, and signified just how low the flow of Merced River had dropped. The storm system over the weekend has not had a huge effect on the level of the Merced River.

Tioga Road and Glacier Point Road within the park remain closed and will be assessed over the next few days. The park is expecting unsettled weather for the remainder of the week, with a chance for more rain, and possibly snow.

Yosemite Falls with fall color
NPS Photo by Ryan Kirtland

Did You Know?

Granite Peaks and Clear Lakes in Torres Del Paine NP

That Yosemite National Park has a sister park in Chile? Parque Nacional Torres del Paine is located among the breath taking scenery of Patagonian Chile. Both parks feature remarkable geology, hydrology, flora and fauna--together the staff of both parks work together to share best practices and care for these landscapes so generations of visitors can revel in their stunning beauty.