Closures

The superintendent's compendium for Yosemite National Park and superintendent's compendium for El Portal Administrative Site contain most closures and other local regulations. Closures not included in these compendiums are listed below (except for climbing closures).This page shows areas closed and uses limited by temporary regulation and doesn't include closures of facilities and services.

By order of the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park and the under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, the following existing closures, public use limitation and general regulations are hereby modified:

 
 

Visiting Hours, Public Use Limits, Closures, Area Designations for Specific Uses or Activities and Conditions

36 CFR § 1.5 (a)(2) – Designate areas for a specific use or activity or impose conditions or restrictions on a use or activity

August 24, 2022

In response to Executive Order no. 13991 The following conditions apply to all federal employees, contractors, volunteers, park partners, and visitors:

Regardless of vaccination status, when local County COVID-19 community levels are considered “high” by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), all individuals over the age of two years must wear masks, except when actively eating or drinking, in all enclosed public transit, common areas and shared workspaces in federally owned buildings administered by the National Park Service and in office space leased by the National Park Service within the specified County.

“Federally owned buildings administered by the National Park Service” include, but are not limited to, visitor centers, administrative offices, maintenance facilities and shared government quarters; buildings assigned to concessioners or other park partners; and buildings leased for commercial purposes to individuals or entities other than the National Park Service.

All individuals over the age of two, regardless of vaccination status, when local County COVID-19 community levels are “high”, must wear masks in the following outdoor areas when others are present, except when actively eating or drinking, where the Superintendent has determined that physical distancing (staying at least six feet apart) cannot reasonably be maintained:

  • Parking Lots and Viewpoints: Within 100 feet of any parking area or pullout

  • Trails: Lower Yosemite Fall Trail, Mist Trail, trails within Mariposa Grove below the Clothespin Tree, Tuolumne Grove, and Merced Grove, and within ½ mile of any trailhead. 

  • Interpretive Facilities and Programs: Indian Cultural Village and Pioneer Yosemite History Center, and within 50 feet of any park employee speaking to a group, gathering, or people attending an interpretive program. 

  • Buildings: Within 25 feet of any public building, including (but not limited to) visitor centers, entrance stations, wilderness centers, campground offices, and ranger stations.

  • Shuttle stops: Within 25 feet of shuttle stops (during seasons and hours when shuttles are operating). 

  • Gathering Places: Village Mall (including the area from Yosemite Village Parking Area to the Yosemite Cemetery); Glacier Point area, including all trails from the parking lot to the amphitheater, geology exhibit, and main viewpoint area.  

  • Eating Areas: Picnic areas and outdoor food service areas, when not eating or drinking. 

Masks must cover the nose and mouth and fit snugly around the nose and chin with no large gaps around the sides of the face. Masks not designed to be protective, masks with ventilation valves, and face shields do not meet the requirement.

Masks are always required inside the Yosemite Medical Clinic regardless of vaccination status or community transmission level.

This designation rescinds all prior and will remain in place until rescinded or superseded.

 

Public Use Limitation (Horsetail Fall Event)

February 6, 2023

The setting sun backlighting Horsetail Falls on El Capitan is a natural phenomenon experienced in Yosemite Valley, also known as “The Firefall.” This event will last from Friday, February 9 through Sunday, February 25, 2024. To preserve public safety, visitor experience, and park resources, the Superintendent has placed the following limitations on public use.By order of the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park and under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 1.5(a), Section (a)(1) and Section (a)(2):Starting Saturday, February 10, 2024, at 12:01 am, the following use limitations are in effect within Yosemite National Park:

  • A reservation is required for any vehicle to enter Yosemite National Park on a reservation day: February 10, 11, 17, 18, 19, 24, 25, 2024 with the following exceptions:
    • Vehicles with an occupant that possesses a valid wilderness permit; reservation for overnight accommodation within the park or in Yosemite West; proof of Badger Pass Season/Day Pass; proof of participation in an authorized commercial use authorization or special use permit activity; or reservation for participation in an authorized concessioner or partner activity.
    • Administrative traffic, which is defined as: vehicles driven by government employees on official business; park residents; authorized contractors; commercial delivery drivers; park concessioner or park partner employees; individuals conducting official business with NPS, a resident, the park concessioner or park partner; or those who are authorized guests of park residents.
    • Vehicles entering the park at the Hetch Hetchy entrance. Entrance fees paid at Hetch Hetchy Entrance on reservation days do not provide for entrance into the rest of Yosemite National Park on reservation days.
      • The Public Use Limit has been established at 1480 day use vehicles per reservation day.

At time of entry, an occupant of each vehicle, except for administrative use, must have a valid entrance permit. A valid entrance permit is one of the following:

  • Wilderness permit starting on the date of entry

  • Badger Pass 2023/2024 Season Ski Pass or all-day lift ticket for the date of entry
  • Overnight accommodations reserved within the park or Yosemite West for the date of entry
  • Day Use Reservation (Horsetail Fall Ticketed Entry Pass) for the date of entry
  • Commercial Use Authorization for the date of entry
  • Special Use Permit for the date of entry
  • Reservation Confirmation for participation in an authorized concessioner or partner activity

This designation will remain in place until rescinded.

 

Safety Closure—Special Event

January 25, 2024

The setting sun backlighting Horsetail Fall on El Capitan is a natural phenomenon experienced in Yosemite Valley, also known as “The Firefall.” This phenomenon (“event”) will last from approximately Friday, February 9 through Sunday, February 25, 2024. Due to expected winter weather conditions and typical attendance at event viewpoints, area closures and modified traffic flow conditions will be implemented in areas of Yosemite Valley. To provide for public safety and the protection of natural resources, the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park is implementing the following use restrictions until further notice is given. By order of the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park and under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 1.5(a) and Section (a)(1):Starting February 9, 2024, the following areas within Yosemite National Park will have the specified restrictions between the hours of 12:00 pm and 7:00 pm daily:

  • All areas marked as “Area Closed” on the accompanying map entitled “Horsetail Falls Special Event Safety Closure” are closed to entry.
  • Stopping or parking in any manner or location on Southside Drive between El Capitan Crossover and Swinging Bridge is prohibited.
  • Southside Drive including the road surface and shoulder between El Capitan Crossover and Swinging Bridge is closed to pedestrians.
  • All pullouts and road shoulders along both sides of Southside Drive between El Capitan Crossover and Swinging Bridge are closed to stopping or parking.
  • The southernmost (left-hand) lane of Northside Drive between Lower Falls Crosswark and El Capitan Crossover is closed to all vehicles. This lane is reserved for pedestrian traffic only.
  • Stopping or parking in any manner or location on Northside Drive between Camp 4 and El Capitan Crossover is prohibited.
  • All pullouts along the south side of Northside Drive between Camp 4 and El Capitan Crossover are closed to vehicles.
  • All pullouts along the north side of Northside Drive between Camp 4 and El Capitan Crossover are closed to vehicles except those which display an ADA placard.
  • El Capitan Picnic Area is closed to all vehicles except those which display an ADA placard.
  • The speed limit along Northside Drive between Camp 4 and El Capitan Crossover is 25 MPH unless posted otherwise.

Management actions are exempted from this order; this designation will remain in place until rescinded. See attached map entitled “Horsetail Falls Special Event Safety Closure” for more information..

 
Map showing closed area on the south side of the river from the river to the Valley Loop Trail, from Cathedral Beach to Four Mile trailhead
 

Winter Storm Damage Closure – Tuolumne Meadows Sub-District

July 24, 2023

The 2022-2023 winter brought historic snowfall amounts to the Tuolumne Meadows Sub-District, many structures sustained damage, some significant. Due to concern for collapsing structures and impacts to construction crews working in these areas, the following areas are closed to all access.

By order of the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park and under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 1.5(a) and Section (a)(1):

Starting July 21th, 2023, the following areas within Yosemite National Park will be closed to access:

  • All areas marked as “Area Closed” on the accompanying map entitled “Tuolumne Meadows Sub-District Winter Storm Damage Closures” are closed to entry.
  • All structures north of the red “danger” tape lines within Ranger Camp.
  • Tuolumne Meadows Ranger Station
  • Select buildings within Bug Camp, as identified with flagging.
  • Yosemite Hospitality Buildings – Tuolumne Lodge and Tuolumne General Store/Post Office/Grill.
  • Any area under active construction.
  • Tuolumne Lodge Parking Lot and Lodge area except for staff living in that location
  • Additional areas may be added as buildings are assessed.

Construction crews are exempted from this order; this designation will remain in place until rescinded.

The closure area will be monitored to ensure compliance. See attache

 
Map showing closed areas at Tuolumne Meadows Store, Lodge, NPS housing area, and ranger station
 

Public Safety Closure – Rockfall Hazard West of Royal Arches

August 30, 2023

Rock climbers recently reported a new crack in a cliff on the western side of Royal Arches, near the climbing route Super Slide. Subsequent investigation revealed that this crack has partially detached a large pillar of rock, and that cracking was actively occurring. As a precautionary effort to reduce risk from rockfall, the National Park Service is implementing a temporary area and trail closure while the area is investigated further.By order of the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park and under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 1.5(a) and Section (a)(1): The following areas and trails are closed to visitor use, including climbing and hiking activities, beginning August 30, 2023 and remaining in effect until further notice:

  1. Area / Trail Closure:
    The Closure includes the Eastern portion of the Ahwahnee Hotel Parking area and extends to just East of Royal Arches creek. Approx. ¼ mile section of the Valley Loop Trail is included in the closure with a marked detour route around the hazard area.

  2. Serenity Crack and Super Slide Climbing Area Closure: Closure includes all routes between and including Peruvian Flake West to the Rhombus Wall. The popular routes Serenity Crack/Sons of Yesterday, and Super Slide are included in the closure.

  3. Ahwahnee Boulders Climbing: Closure includes all boulders east of and including the Ahwahnee boulder.

The cliff and cracks will be monitored to provide current information on rockfall hazard, and these closures are subject to change based on this monitoring. Your cooperation in complying with these temporary closures is greatly appreciated. The designation will remain in place until rescinded.

 
Map showing closure from the eastern portion of The Ahwahnee parking up on the cliffs to include Super Slide and Serenity Crack climbing routes
 

Safety Closure (Hazardous Conditions)

February 6, 2024

On February 5, 2024 a significant rockfall has covered section of the John Muir Trail approximately 1.25 miles up the trail from the trailhead. The area of the rockfall contains large unstable boulders and trees making the trail impassable with significant risk. Yosemite National Park staff members have conducted an initial evaluation of the area and determined that it is not safe for the public to travel through the rockfall area. By order of the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park and under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section l.5(a) and Section (a)(l):Starting February 7, 2024 the following area(s) are closed to foot use:

  • The John Muir Trail from the JMT Trailhead to the Vernal Falls footbridge.

This closure is anticipated to remain in effect until the trail can be assessed and repaired with no estimated time of re-opening at this time.

ALTERNATIVE ROUTE: The stock trail accessed near the Nature Center on river left is currently the only alternative route to get to the Vernal Falls footbridge and to tie in with the JMT.

The closure area will be monitored to ensure compliance. Your cooperation in complying with this temporary restriction is greatly appreciated. Please see attached map for more information.Management actions are excepted from this order. This designation will remain in place until rescinded.

 
Map showing the trail below Vernal Fall footbridge closed with a detour on the stock trail on the west side of the river
 

Visiting Hours, Public Use Limits, Closures, Area Designations for Specific Uses or Activities and Conditions [specific to El Portal Administrative Site]

36 CFR § 34.5 (a)(3) and 1.5 (a)(2) – Designate areas for a specific use or activity or impose conditions or restrictions on a use or activity

August 14, 2022

In response to Executive Order no. 13991 The following conditions apply to all federal employees, contractors, volunteers, park partners, and visitors:

Regardless of vaccination status, when local County COVID-19 community levels are considered “high” by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), all individuals over the age of two years must wear masks, except when actively eating or drinking, in all enclosed public transit, common areas and shared workspaces in federally owned buildings administered by the National Park Service and in office space leased by the National Park Service within the specified County.

“Federally owned buildings administered by the National Park Service” include, but are not limited to, visitor centers, administrative offices, maintenance facilities and shared government quarters; buildings assigned to concessioners or other park partners; and buildings leased for commercial purposes to individuals or entities other than the National Park Service.

All individuals over the age of two, regardless of vaccination status, when local County COVID-19 community levels are “high”, must wear masks in the following outdoor areas when others are present, except when actively eating or drinking, where the Superintendent has determined that physical distancing (staying at least six feet apart) cannot reasonably be maintained:

  • Parking Lots and Viewpoints: Any parking lot or pullout.

  • Interpretive Facilities and Programs: El Portal Train Exhibit and within 50 feet of any park employee speaking to a group or gathering.

  • Buildings: Within 25 feet of any public building, including (but not limited to) the entrance station, post office, fire station, community hall, and gas station.

  • Bus stops: When entering, riding, and exiting buses and shuttles (during seasons and hours when buses are operating).

  • Gathering Places: Prominent beaches along the river.

  • Eating Areas: Picnic areas and outdoor food service areas, when not eating or drinking. 

Masks must cover the nose and mouth and fit snugly around the nose and chin with no large gaps around the sides of the face. Masks not designed to be protective, masks with ventilation valves, and face shields do not meet the requirement.

This designation rescinds all prior and will remain in place until rescinded or superseded.

 

Area Closure (El Portal Trailer Court)

July 1, 2022

In order to maintain public health and safety, the El Portal Trailer Court (EPTC) was closed to public use on March 14, 2022. Individuals who previously had housing assignment agreements with the National Park Service for government lots in the trailer court were provided official notice of the closure and given until June 30, 2022, to remove all personal property from the area. Effective July 1, 2022, at 12:01 am the EPTC (see attached map) is closed to all but administrative uses; all personal property remaining within the closed area will be considered abandoned and will be processed in accordance with the provisions of 36 CFR Sections 34.5(b)(14) and 2.22(c)(3) and 41 CFR Part 102-41.

By order of the Superintendent of Yosemite National Park and under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 34.5(a)(3), Section 1.5(a) and Section (a)(1):

Starting July 1, 2022, at 12:01 am the El Portal Trailer Court is closed to all public use.

Notice of closure will be posted and the area will be monitored to ensure compliance; administrative activities are exempted from this order. See attached map entitled “El Portal Trailer Court Area Closure” for more information.

 
Map showing the area of the trailer court in El Portal

Last updated: February 9, 2024

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