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  • March 19, 2023

Trails are still snowy. Lodging only partially reopens tomorrow, but all that is far less of a concern if you’re a bird! Peregrine falcons have begun nesting in the park again high up on the granite structures, a perfect place to scout out prey below before plummeting upon them at insane speeds. While exploring the park, be sure to look up! You just might get to see a precipitous peregrine plummet in action, but for those of you who love being on the big walls almost as much as the birds, this gets a bit more complicated.

Climbing closures are now in effect through July 15 to help protect our local population of these impressive creatures that had become extirpated from the park by the 1970s. The closures are updated regularly to provide both sustainable protection for active breeding peregrine pairs and maximal climbing access. So, before heading out on a climb, please check for current route closures on our information boards at Camp 4, El Capitan Bridge, and certain approach trails or online:

Enjoy this video, “Yosemite Peregrines: A Story of Hope,” to learn more about the biology of these Yosemite icons and the coordinated rehabilitation project to recover their devastated population from DDT poisoning.

For an audio described version of this video, go to

  • March 17, 2023

JOB POSTING: Civil Engineer (Structural Focus)

Did you know there are well over a thousand buildings and other structures in Yosemite National Park? Many of them, such as this leaning maintenance shed, weren’t designed to handle the snow loads we experienced in this year's winter storms. Designing for the repair and rehabilitation of these facilities presents a complex series of challenges for our architects and engineers. Our engineers also contribute to the design and construction of new and replacement facilities, such as this water tank at Bridalveil Creek Campground and trail bridge at Glen Aulin.If you are a structural-savvy civil engineer with a passion for helping to maintain our National Park resources, consider applying to this opportunity with Yosemite's Design & Engineering team. In this job you will serve as the team’s subject matter expert for structural engineering. This position will be responsible for both design and project management of a wide variety of project types, including small structure foundations, building rehabilitations, trail bridges, and much more. Apply by April 5 at

Are you new to the federal hiring system? A one-page business resume won't cut it. Check out these tips for developing a federal resume:

  • March 15, 2023

The snow just keeps on coming in the high country. According to our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers, the settled snow depth up there is now at 146 inches, topping out the previous record from 1983 by six inches! That amount snow can cause a fair number of difficulties, like the loss of commercial power. They’re doing just fine in such conditions, but they did have to keep it short this week. Check their latest update for the usual on high country conditions, avalanche risk, and historical tidbits on wintertime recreation in Yosemite:

  • March 10, 2023

Rest assured that despite all the snow that the season has thrown (and continues to throw) at them, our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers are still alive and well, and completing snow surveys to boot! Since February 21, they’ve received 133 inches of new snow, and the constant storms certainly didn’t make their job easy. They haven’t had much time for “tiddledywinks nor jig-saw puzzles” as Yosemite’s 1933 “The Skier’s Ten Commandments” demand. (For context, Jules Fritsch was the first formal ski instructor at Yosemite’s ski school). Check our winter rangers’ latest blog update for tales of serious trail breaking, winter’s quick erasure thereof, more park wintertime history, and the usual but important conditions report:

  • February 24, 2023

The Big Oak Flat Road (the extension of HWY 120 inside the park) and Wawona Road (the extension of HWY 41 within the park) are closed at least overnight due to snow. The El Portal Road (extension of HWY 140) and all roads within Yosemite Valley currently remain at R3 conditions, meaning tire chains are required for all vehicles, no exceptions. Travel is strongly discouraged.

You can call our road status phoneline anytime at 209/372-0200 (then press 1 and 1 again) for current conditions. Read more about tire chains:

  • February 24, 2023

Even those who like snow should be asking themselves, “Do I like it this much?” And if we may answer it for them, “No, you do not.”

At the time of publishing this post, The Big Oak Flat Road (the extension of HWY 120 within the park) is closed. Meanwhile, both the El Portal Road (the extension of HWY 140 within the park) and Wawona Road (the extension of HWY 41 within the park) are at R3 conditions, meaning that tire chains are required on all vehicles, no exceptions. All roads within Yosemite Valley are also at R3, and additional closures are possible. Those who must travel to and from the park today should use HWY 140; however, we strongly discourage travel due to the severe winter conditions which are forecast to continue over the weekend and into next week.

Please call our road status phoneline at 209/372-0200 (then press 1 and 1 again) for road conditions within the park. For conditions on the roads outside park boundaries, you can call Caltrans’s phone line at 1-800/427-7623 or visit Read more about tire chains here:

  • February 23, 2023
    Last week was cold and dry in Tuolumne Meadows, but that has changed this week, and our winter rangers are likely getting dumped on during this current winter storm. Long before Rob and Laura’s tenure and well before the inception of the Tuolumne Meadows winter ranger program in 1973, there was another married couple who enjoyed working in a snowy environment and saw the potential for winter recreation in Yosemite. In 1928, Mary and Don Tresidder of then Curry Company shared the passion of sliding on snow and promoting winter sports in Yosemite Park. Learn more about avalanche activity, winter history, wildlife sightings, and conditions from the past week:

  • February 17, 2023

Rockfalls are a natural and dynamic geologic process involving the detachment and rapid downward movement of rock. Due to its steep, glacier-carved cliffs, Yosemite Valley experiences many rockfalls each year. Historical records indicate that more than 1,500 rockfalls have occurred in the park since 1857. Massive piles of "talus," or rock debris, at the base of Yosemite Valley's cliffs are reminders of these dramatic events. Rockfalls help to create the beautiful and changing scenery in Yosemite National Park, but they also present potential hazards.

Rockfall hazard zones occur throughout the park near any cliff faces. If you witness a rockfall from the Valley floor, quickly move away from the cliff toward the center of the Valley. If you are near the base of a cliff or talus slope when a rockfall occurs above, immediately seek shelter behind the largest nearby object. After rocks have stopped falling, move quickly away from the cliff toward the center of the Valley. Be aware that rockfalls are inherently unpredictable and may happen at any time. Pay attention to warning signs, stay off of closed trails, and, if unsure, keep away from the cliffs.

Remember that Yosemite is a wild place. Rockfall is the most powerful geologic agent acting today in Yosemite. The dramatic cliffs of Yosemite are constantly being shaped by this potent natural force.

Learn more about rockfalls in our website:

  • February 16, 2023
    Warm, dry, and windy. Those are the conditions our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers experienced this past week. The mercury topped 50°F this week above 8,000 feet for the first time in nearly two months. There was also a wind event over the weekend that saw northeast winds in excess of 50 mph for a 24-hour period. Ski conditions fluctuate from day to day with the weather du jour. In a year like this, even the most fit visitors will find it difficult to make it from the Lee Vining Gate to Tuolumne Meadows in a day, especially with a heavy pack. So, if you are planning a trip to the Tuolumne Meadows Ski Hut, or any other winter wilderness destination, plan accordingly! Read more about conditions, technology tips for traveling in the wilderness, avalanche updates, and wildlife sightings:
  • February 9, 2023
    For our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers, last week started warm and dry and ended cold and wet. They were happy to see the storm come through over the weekend which brought fresh snow (14 inches of it!), high winds, and cold temperatures. Ski conditions were vastly improved by the new snow. Evidence of coyote and long and short-tailed weasels were seen in the snow up high this week, as well as sightings of golden eagles and a white-tailed jackrabbit. Learn more in this week’s update about avalanche and snowpack conditions, suggestions on equipment if planning to ski in the area, and more about their wildlife sightings:
  • February 7, 2023
    Tomorrow on Wednesday, February 8, at 8 am Pacific time, additional day-use reservations for Friday, February 10, will be released online at All remaining reservations will continue to be released two days prior to each reservation date at 8 am PT. A day-use reservation is required for those staying outside of the park and first driving into Yosemite on Feb 10-12, 17-19, and 24-26 due to the Horsetail Fall event. For example, reservations for February 11 will be released on February 9, for February 12 on February 10, for February 17 on February 15, etc.

    A day-use reservation is good for seven consecutive days beginning on the reservation date. Visitors who first arrive Mondays through Thursdays don't need a reservation. The $35/vehicle entrance fee is valid for entry for seven consecutive days, regardless of day of arrival.

    Learn more about reservations:
    Learn more about the Horsetail Fall event:

  • February 3, 2023

Glacier Point is looking a bit truer to its name with all that ice. As the water cycles through periods of gently melting (during the day) and refreezing (overnight), the sheets of ice can take on new shapes, weaken, and sometimes disrupt its own winter serenity with quite a bang. If you’re in the right place at the right time, you just might get to see some ice collapse. Regardless of where you’re standing in the Valley, you’ll very likely hear it. They sound a lot like a rockfall, which this same mechanism can also trigger, so use caution if you’re planning to hike up any of the open trails that ascend the walls. Good sense and good gear help make for a good time. Consider bringing traction devices for your footwear to more safely traverse slippery ice patches you may encounter.

If you’re not here yet and afraid you’re going to miss all the snow and ice, worry not! For just as the marmot, er, groundhog, has ordered, we’ve got another winter storm warning for Saturday evening through Sunday night. Currently the Valley floor is forecast for a few inches of snow with the higher elevation roads potentially getting about a foot of snow. Tire chains will be required. You can call our road status phoneline anytime at 209/372-0200 (then press 1 and 1 again) for current conditions, including active chain restrictions and road closures

To learn more about tire chains:

  • February 1, 2023
    January brought a lot of snow to the Sierra Nevada, with 181 inches of snow falling in Tuolumne Meadows! Our winter rangers are halfway through this month’s round of snow surveys and just got back from one of the more rustic outposts, where they melt snow for water and cook over a wood burning stove. This month they found the stove pipe under ten feet of snow!

    Aside from wind scoured slopes in the alpine, snow coverage is excellent for this time of year even on many south-facing slopes. The average snow depth of their snow surveys completed so far is 122 inches and the central Sierra Nevada is presently above the April 1 average for water content of the snow.

    Despite all the snow, bears are still active in the park, and our winter rangers found tracks following their ski tracks even above 8,000 feet. Bears won’t always hibernate if they have enough food to make it through the winter. It’s important to stay vigilant about food storage year-round. Check out more updates from Rob and Laura in this week’s blog:

  • January 30, 2023
    Time’s running out! The public comment period for the first phase of the Visitor Access Management Plan is coming to an end. Comments will be accepted through February 3, 2023. The purpose of this plan is to evaluate how different management strategies, including reservation systems, could help meet long-term resource and visitor experience goals.

    A virtual public meeting was held on January 17. A video of the meeting, along with additional planning information, and the comment form can be found online:

  • January 25, 2023
    The skies finally cleared over the Sierra Nevada this week. Par for the course, the epic, powder-filled snowstorms of the past three weeks were replaced by windstorms. Our winter rangers took advantage on their recent day off, while the winds were exceeding 100 miles per hour at the highest of elevations, to bake their first loaf of sourdough bread of the season...YUM. To live in winter conditions for months at a time such as they do, they must be prepared and resourceful; shopping for all five months over the course of three days in October, then hoping that their food stash is stored well for their December through April stay in Tuolumne Meadows.
  • Rob and Laura took the opportunity that the clear weather provided last week to take a three-day patrol to Tioga Pass and Lee Vining Canyon. Not surprisingly, they found the Tioga Pass Entrance Station and related building buried in snow. In addition to lots of avalanche activity and debris in the area, they also saw a white-tailed ptarmigan blending in with its snowy surroundings. Check out their latest blog post for more information about their living conditions, current ski conditions, and avalanche updates:
  • January 21, 2023

The Lower Yosemite Fall footbridge and portions of the western and eastern arms of the trail are temporarily closed due to a heavy flow of frazil ice from the falls. “What's frazil ice?” you ask? It’s when fast-moving, turbulent water gets so cold it forms what looks like a slushie but one more dangerous than delicious. As you can see, it’s filled in the Yosemite Creek drainage beneath the falls and overtaken the bridge and trail. While its lava-like flow may mesmerize the eye, frazil ice is a deceptive hazard. It’s not a solid surface despite its appearance, so when its slush hides the boundaries of sure footing, falling in and becoming trapped beneath is a serious risk. Additionally, we’ll need to look at what it did to the bridge once it melts out. In the meantime, enjoy these videos or see the frazil ice for yourself from the open portions of the trail.

You can learn more about frazil ice in our 2010 Yosemite Nature Notes Video here:

An Audio-Described version is available here:

  • January 18, 2023

Sixty-four inches of new snow in Tuolumne Meadows sure makes for a lot of work for our winter rangers. Good thing they’re no strangers to the mighty snow shovel… or to long miles of breaking trail in these conditions. Finally, though, a blue sky, and wildlife, including this white-breasted nuthatch, too, enjoyed the cheerful brilliance after monotonous days under the weight of the storm. If you choose to go join them, mind the hazards this weather sequence can bring. Read up more about snow conditions, travel tips, wildlife sightings, and the experience of our dauntless Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers in their latest update here:

  • January 17, 2023

    Do you want to be a part of planning for Yosemite’s future? Join today’s virtual public meeting at 4 pm PT to learn more about the Visitor Access Management Plan. The purpose of this plan is to evaluate how different management strategies, including reservation systems, could help meet long-term resource and visitor experience goals.

    The initial comment period is open now and will close on February 3, 2023. We want to hear from you! Today’s public meeting is from 4 to 5:30 pm PT and park staff will share information and answer questions.

    Learn more about this plan and submit your comments:

  • January 15, 2023

The Cathedral Rocks may know how to dress in this fresh layer of snow, but be careful on the roads as this storm has caused another rockslide.

Hwy 140 is currently closed outside of the park due to a rockfall between El Portal and Midpines. For road conditions outside the park, you can call the Caltrans status hotline at 1-800/427-7623. For road conditions inside the park, you can call our hotline at 209/372-0200 (then press 1 and 1). Tire chains will be required inside the park. You can read more about tire chains here:

  • January 13, 2023

With heavy precipitation forecast for the weekend, a winter storm warning is in effect for Yosemite National Park. Higher elevation areas may receive approximately three feet of new snow while Yosemite Valley may get six inches or less. However, the precipitation may trigger rockfalls and debris flows anywhere in the park. Drive and hike cautiously through the weekend. Tire chains will be required. You can call our road status hotline anytime at 209/372-0200 (then press 1, 1) for current road conditions include active tire chain restrictions and road closures. You can read more about tire chains here:

  • January 12,2023

If you’re planning on visiting Yosemite on a weekend in February to see this waterfall - or anything else in the park - set your alarms for tomorrow morning! Yes, tomorrow, January 13, at 8 am Pacific Time the first 50% of reservations for the last three weekends in February (i.e., Feb. 10-12, 17-19, and 24-26) become available online at The remaining 50% will be released at 8 am Pacific Time two days before the reservation date (e.g., the remaining 50% for February 10 become available 8 am on February 8). No reservations are required for the first weekend in February (Feb. 3-5).

If you first arrive Mondays through Thursdays (and keep the receipt), you won’t need a reservation as the $35/vehicle entrance fee is valid for seven consecutive days, regardless of day of arrival. Also, if you have lodging reservations in Yosemite Valley, Wawona, Foresta, or Yosemite West, or campground reservations in Upper Pines, Camp 4, Wawona, or Hodgdon Meadow Campgrounds, you won’t need an additional reservation.

For further questions regarding the entrance reservation system for the Horsetail Fall event in February, please check our FAQ here:

This reservation is in place during the Horsetail Fall event, which you can learn more about at

  • January 11, 2023

It’s been a wet and windy week here in Yosemite (and all over parts of California)! What does that mean for our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers? It means 75 inches of new snow and a whole lot of shoveling. With new snow that deep, it’s going to take at least a few days of settlement to make traveling any distances a reasonable or safe option. With the possibility of more snow this weekend, that window may be even more limited. One of their thoughts regarding avalanche conditions: “With recent high winds, the chalkboard is constantly being erased before we even lay eyes upon it. It will be interesting to see what has happened once the dust has fully settled.” Read more snow travel tips, wildlife notes, and other updates in this week’s post:

  • January 7, 2023

Why did the bear cross the bridge? To get to the other side, and nothing more, we hope!

During the winter, some bears will come and go from hibernation, while others may just never tuck in for the season if there’s enough food to go around. This means that, just like us, they’re willing to wander through the snow from time to time to see what they can find. It’s unclear whether they appreciate Yosemite Falls in the same manner that we do this time of year, but we certainly do know that they’ll enjoy your lunch, perhaps more so than you, if they can get to it. Since it’s bad for both you and the bear if the bear succeeds, here are some food storage guidelines that’ll keep everyone happy and healthy during your winter visit to Yosemite:

· Please keep all food and scented items, regardless of packaging, within arm’s reach. If there’s food in your pack or cooler, that means your pack or cooler is within arm’s reach.

· Food and scented items can be stored out of sight in your vehicle during the day. Overnight, please store these items inside your hotel room with windows closed or secured in a food locker.

· Dispose of all trash in proper bear-resistant trash can or dumpster, reattaching the clip of the can or dumpster if it has one. If no trash can is available, please pack your trash with you until you find one.

· Maintain a safe and respectful distance of about fifty yards away from any bear you may encounter. If you are unable to safely retreat if a bear approaches within that distance, please scare it away by shouting loudly and aggressively.

· Please report bear encounters by calling 209/372-0322. If a bear is lingering in a developed area or is trying to acquire human food, call 911.

These practices encourage our bears to have longer, healthier lives. You can read more about food storage policies here:

Also, check out to learn further how you can help protect these beloved creatures in Yosemite.

  • January 6, 2023

Join the conversation and help plan for Yosemite’s future! Mark your calendar for January 17, 2023, at 4 pm PT and join a virtual public meeting to discuss how best to manage visitor access to Yosemite.

In December we launched the first phase of the Visitor Access Management Plan. Yosemite National Park’s primary and daily focus is ensuring world-class experiences, a welcoming environment for all visitors, and protection of nationally significant resources. Like many parks across the system, providing for and managing use at Yosemite is increasingly complex due to growth in day-use visitation and changing use patterns.  The purpose of this plan is to evaluate how different management strategies, including reservation systems, could help meet long-term resource and visitor experience goals.

The initial comment period is open now and will close on February 3, 2023. We want to hear from you! There will be a virtual public meeting on Tuesday, January 17, 2023 from 4 to 5:30 pm PT; park staff will share information and answer questions.

Learn more about this plan and submit your comments:

  • January 5, 2023

Planning on driving up to Yosemite National Park on a weekend in February? January 13 is the day for you!

Entrance reservations for the last three weekends of February (i.e., Feb. 10-12, 17-19, and 24-26) will be required and become available at 8 am Pacific time on January 13 at If you first arrive Mondays through Thursdays (and keep the receipt), you won’t need a reservation as the $35/vehicle entrance fee is valid for seven consecutive days, regardless of day of arrival. Also, if you have lodging reservations in Yosemite Valley, Wawona, Foresta, or Yosemite West, or campground reservations in Camp 4, Wawona, or Hodgdon Meadow Campgrounds, you won’t need an additional reservation.

For further questions regarding the entrance reservation system for the Horsetail Fall event in February, please check our FAQ here:

This reservation is in place during the Horsetail Fall event, which you can learn more about at

  • January 4, 2023

Our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers ended the year with rain, but that was quickly (and thankfully) followed by more snow. There is now about six feet of snow at Tuolumne Meadows (8,600 feet/2,600 m elevation) and more in the forecast. As you can imagine, this makes ski conditions quite variable. With not much time in between storms, snow hasn’t had time to settle so it can be slow and arduous to get to your destination. Avalanche activity has been observed along the Tioga Road and other areas. It’s extremely important to be prepared when venturing into the wilderness in winter. Check out this week’s update for more information:

  • January 4, 2023

A winter storm warning is in effect for Yosemite National Park through the morning of January 6th. High winds are forecast to bring heavy precipitation across the park, potentially including one to three feet of snow at places like Crane Flat along Big Oak Flat Road (the extension of Hwy 120 within the park) and Chinquapin along Wawona Road (the extension of Hwy 41 within the park). Call our road status hotline anytime at 209/372-0200 (then press 1, 1) for current road conditions and closures. Tire chains will be required:

Due to a forecast of high winds, Upper Pines Campground and Camp 4 will be closed for at least the night of Wednesday, January 4th. The closure may be extended if conditions persist.

  • December 24, 2022

Our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers will be back with their weekly reports after the new year, but until then left us with one more update for 2022. While there was no new snow last week, they report that early season ski conditions are excellent. The common ski lexicon of “boot top powder” pretty much sums it up. The snow surface is supportable enough that skis do not penetrate much deeper than six inches. Boot penetration, however, is much deeper and one would not want to currently be caught out in the Sierra Nevada without snow travel tools like skis, split boards or snowshoes.

Read through their full blog post for more information on conditions, wildlife sightings, and avalanche reports:

  • December 22, 2022

What do you need to build a home? Traditionally, in these mountains, you just need community, ingenuity, and the confidence of a tree. This is an umacha, a traditional bark house of the park’s seven associated tribes: The Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation, Bishop Paiute Tribe, Bridgeport Indian Colony, Mono Lake Kootzaduka’a, North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians of California, Picayune Rancheria of the Chukchansi Indians, and the Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians. Construction begins with cedar poles secured by wild grapevines while the cedar bark plating must come from a carefully selected source. If the tree is only recently dead, the bark won’t easily separate into the convenient shape. If the tree has been dead too long, well, then you might carry that decay into the walls of your house. Wisdom suggests at least two years’ time for a deceased, old cedar works best; two years grant you the inheritance of a cedar’s resilient pride against the elements to shelter your family for years to come.

You can find examples of umachas behind the Yosemite Museum in the Indian Village, a reconstruction from the 1970s of various native structures that have seen continuous use ever since for tribal events and ceremonies. Those of you #ParkedAtHome can read about the Indian Village here:

But no matter where you may be this winter, an appreciation for the umacha isn’t far away. Just look around your own residence, wander its space, explore its features. It’s probably built out of something other than cedar bark and grapevines, but the sentiment is the same. It keeps the winter out. It keeps you in. It’s home, irrevocably so.

We all know the notion of having - or sometimes, unfortunately, only wanting - a place to be. From this, perhaps we can work towards a more expansive generosity.

  • December 15, 2022

    Another sign that winter is coming; our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers have arrived for the season! For the first time in their twelve years at Yosemite, they were able to ski all the way from the Lee Vining area! For these snow lovers, it was a welcome "commute" back home. Check out their first teaser of the season in the following blog post, with more regular posts coming soon:

  • December 14, 2022

    All this snow may have you thinking purely of winter and cold weather activities, but we’re already planning for the warm days of summer. ☀ We are advertising 33 different jobs on USAJOBS right now! Check out the positions online and learn more about summer job opportunities in Yosemite: (search by location “Yosemite, CA”).

    Some positions open now involve working outside in the park’s wilderness: horse packing, studying fire effects, building and repairing trails, field technicians, and more. There are a variety of openings specific to utility and electrical work as well. Consider applying or share with someone you know that wants to be a part of our incredible National Park Service team!

  • December 11, 2022

This is not Yosemite Valley.

This a model of it in the Yosemite Valley Visitor Center.

Errr, I guess here on the internet it’s actually a picture of a model of Yosemite Valley in the Yosemite Valley Visitor Center. Clearly, it’s not quite the same, but on these rainy and snowy days, you can’t see much of the real thing anyway. Even on the valley floor, the clouds are obstructing any view of the above cliffs, but there’s still much to do in the park on days like these. Swing by the Yosemite Valley Visitor Center to explore exhibits on the park geology, ecology, and history beginning with the natives’ original occupancy of the land. Just next door is the Yosemite Museum where you can see for yourself the ingenuity and craftsmanship of native culture in the Indian Cultural Exhibit.

Those of you #ParkedAtHome have plenty of options, too!

You can enjoy our virtual basketry exhibit here:

Or take a deep dive into our many webpages on natural history here:

And for kids, maybe start with some of our virtual Junior Ranger and art activities here:

Our granite monuments may be out of sight and their trails frozen over, but your explorations need not cease. There’s no treachery in learning more about the things you love.

  • December 9, 2022

Yosemite National Park is initiating a public comment period for a Visitor Access Management Plan today. The park will seek input on how visitors can plan future visits to one of the most popular sites in the National Park System.

A series of public meetings, both virtual and in-person, will begin in January 2023. The 8-week public comment period will last through Feb. 3, 2023.

"Yosemite's primary focus is to ensure visitors are not only fully welcomed into the park, but they get a world-class experience," said Yosemite National Park Superintendent Cicely Muldoon. "This is a bustling park and providing for and managing visitation has become increasingly complex due to growth in day-use visitation and changes in how visitors enjoy the park."

You can learn more at

News release:

  • December 9, 2022

    Yosemite National Park will require reservations for the last three weekends of February 2023.

    During that time of year, thousands of visitors visit Horsetail Fall, a waterfall that creates the illusion that the water is on fire. The surge in visitation has led to full parking lots, parking overflowing into traffic lanes, pedestrian-vehicle conflicts causing safety issues, and damage to natural and cultural resources. In order to manage this event, a reservation will be required to drive into Yosemite National Park on the weekends of February 10–12, February 17–19, and February 24–26, 2023. Visitors who first arrive Mondays through Thursdays won't need a reservation. The $35/car entrance fee is valid for entry for seven days, regardless of day of arrival. Reservations will go on sale for that event at on Jan. 13, 2023 at 8 am PST. Each reservation will be valid for seven days.

    As previously announced, we will not implement a reservation system for the summer of 2023. However, we are initiating a public comment period for a Visitor Access Management Plan today. The park will seek input on how visitors can plan future visits to one of the most popular sites in the National Park System. Visit for more information.

    News release:

  • December 8, 2022

Another winter storm warning is in effect for Yosemite from late Friday night through Sunday night. The heaviest snowfall is forecast for Saturday into Sunday, and light snow may continue into Monday. With about a foot of snow forecast for Yosemite Valley, expect multiple feet at the higher elevation regions and roads. Tire chains will be required for your vehicle. Snowshoes and other traction devices for your footwear are strongly recommended.

Call 209/372-0200 (then 1 and 1) anytime for current road conditions including any active tire chain restrictions and road closures. Be prepared for traffic delays and temporary road closures during the next few days.

You can read more about tire chains at

You can watch the storm safely from home via the park webcams provided by Yosemite Conservancy at

  • December 4, 2022

Rain sure gives our waterfalls a sudden boost, but don’t believe the blue skies quite yet! More inclement weather is due for the park through Wednesday and possibly returning for the weekend. Even if the forecast snow becomes rain, freezing temperatures overnight result in slick roads and trails. Keep yourself safe by bringing tire chains for your vehicle and traction devices for your boots.

You can call our road status hotline anytime at 209/372-0200 (then press 1 and 1 again) for current road conditions and tire chain restrictions. If you’re visiting us soon, expect chain requirements and possible traffic delays or road closures.

You can learn more about tire chains at

You can also via the conditions yourself through Yosemite Conservancy’s webcams at

  • November 27, 2022

As part of Native American Heritage Month, we invited native employees of the National Park Service in Yosemite National Park to speak of their work in, their connection to, and their history with the park. Today, meet Emily!

Emily is a member of the Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation, born and raised in Mariposa, California. She is also Chukchansi. She graduated from Sonoma State University with a Bachelor of Art in History and recently finished her Master of Arts in Cultural Heritage Management from Johns Hopkins University. She started working for Yosemite as a Student Conservation Association intern as an Indian Cultural Demonstrator after she graduated from Sonoma State. She also interned with U.S. Fish and Wildlife and the U.S. Forest Service before coming back to work in Yosemite National Park as an Interpretive Park Ranger and Indian Cultural Demonstrator.

"I love working in this park. I grew up coming here, all my field trips were mostly here. I grew up hearing stories from my great grandmother about growing up in the village here and the connection my people have to this place. It holds a special place in my heart, and I get to share their story every day I come to work both from a historical and present-day perspective. I studied untold stories when I went to college and I feel so fortunate telling the story of my people from the perspective of us, as native people and not from a mis-recorded story in a book. The look on my elders face when they see me in my park service uniform is a look I’ll always carry with me."

You can read more about Emily and her journey in this recent article from the National Park Service:

  • November 18, 2022

Following the success of last year's North Pines Campground early access lottery, we will be implementing this process for the full season of North Pines Campground this coming year (April 17 through the night of October 29, 2023). The lottery application period will be November 28 through December 12, 2022.

Successful lottery applicants will have an opportunity to make a reservation for campsites in North Pines Campground during a less-competitive early access period. Any remaining availability will be released on the usual on-sale dates (five months in advance on the 15th of the month) beginning February 15.

The goals of this lottery are to:

  • Reduce confusion and frustration for a highly competitive reservation process.

  • Offer a more equitable experience through a new method for reserving campsites at this high-demand location.

  • Address visitor complaints about the perception of an unfair reservation process.

Learn more at

  • November 12, 2022

We’re hiring! Millions of visitors flock to Yosemite’s roads, trails, and campgrounds each year for an obvious reason. Yosemite National Park is currently hiring rangers to greet these inspired travelers at our entrance stations and campground kiosks to establish a friendly rapport, provide fundamental orientation, encourage sustainable stewardship, and collect necessary revenues. If you’d like to work in one of the world’s premier national parks, apply now thru November 18th at To apply, you’ll need to prepare and submit a federal resume, which looks a lot different from normal resumes. Follow this link to learn about what you need to include for a successful application:

We hope to see you soon in the styling green and grey!

  • November 11, 2022

The snow’s back! Time again to don your coats and festive cheer and come romp in the gifts of the season. But, before you do, let’s talk about the trails… As you can see, they look a bit different now under winter’s temperament. Here’s a winter hiking update:

· Our trails in the late fall through early spring pose new challenges even to confident summer hikers. Many trails, including those on the Yosemite Valley floor, become slick from ice and frost while those at higher elevations are lost under snow. Traction devices for your shoes are strongly recommended. Furthermore, orientation and navigation tools, along with the knowhow to wield them, are a good idea, especially on longer adventures.

· The tops of Vernal and Nevada Falls remain open but only through our alternate winter route:

· The Four Mile Trail is closed above Union Point (about two-thirds up the trail) due to treacherous conditions.

· Please respect trail closures. As frustrating as they may be to your plans, no photograph or itinerary is worth a fatal risk to yourself and Yosemite Search and Rescue staff. Come prepared with the necessary gear and have the courage to back down if the conditions outmatch your expertise. You can review current park conditions here:

Now that being said, go out and play!

  • November 6, 2022

The enormous, nearly 400-year-old namesake sugar pine of Sugar Pine Bridge in Yosemite Valley fell over last month, a consequence of its failing health in recent years. Graciously, in its thunderous collapse, it spared the adjacent historic bridge.

While we lament the loss of such a beautiful, long-lived tree, its fractured form will now serve a new purpose in its afterlife. Large wood, like our pine, that falls into rivers provides critical structure and habitat to a healthy river's ecosystem. The stream’s current tosses about the wooden fragments, often lodging pieces into the banks and thereby slowing the flow of the river. At this slower pace, water can then to jump up into the adjacent floodplain to nourish riparian plant species. Additionally, the submerged wood provides shelter and nursery habitat for fish along the banks, and the accumulation of trapped leaves and other woody debris fosters smaller aquatic insect populations that form the base of the food chain for all other river dwellers.

Our river restoration projects often mimic this natural process by reintroducing large wood back into the river to jumpstart the ecological mechanisms that support river health. You can find examples of this type of riverbank restoration project along the Merced River just downstream of the Ahwahnee Bridge and Stoneman Bridge in Yosemite Valley. These projects are part of a larger effort to restore the Merced River as outlined in the Merced River Plan. Visit to learn more about these projects.

  • November 5, 2022

Glaciers’ repeated advances and retreats over the last 2 million years played an important role in sculpting Yosemite’s landscape, but most of this ice melted away by about 10,000 years ago. During a more recent cold period called the Little Ice Age, small glaciers reformed below the highest peaks. Currently, two glaciers remain: the Lyell and Maclure glaciers. They are among the longest studied glaciers in North America and are critical to local ecosystems in providing a year-round supply of cold water to the Lyell Fork of the Tuolumne River.

On August 21, 1872, naturalist John Muir installed five wooden stakes in Yosemite’s Maclure Glacier, surveying in their locations by sighting “past a plumb-line, made of a stone and a black horse hair.” He returned on October 6 and found that the stakes had moved 47 inches, or about an inch per day, proving that the Maclure Glacier was a “living glacier.”

In 2012, scientists repeated Muir’s experiment using modern techniques. They found the Maclure Glacier moving at an inch per day—the exact same rate measured by Muir 140 years earlier despite a much smaller glacier in 2012. They also noted that the nearby Lyell Glacier did not move at all, probably because it is too thin.

This year scientists reproduced Muir’s experiment again—150 years ago to the exact day! They found that the Maclure Glacier has slowed down, now creeping three-quarters of an inch per day. The Lyell Glacier remains stagnant.

Since 1883, both glaciers have lost 90% of their volumes. Soon to be absent altogether, they are among Yosemite's most visible indicators of climate change.

You can learn more about Yosemite’s glaciers at

  • November 4, 2022

A winter storm warning is in effect from Sunday afternoon through Wednesday morning. Several feet of snow are forecast at higher elevations, with snow possible in Yosemite Valley. Tire chains will be required on most or all park roads; see for more information. Be prepared for unplanned road closures due to unsafe conditions. Call 209/372-0200 (then 1, 1) to check on road status.

  • October 31, 2022

Tioga Road (the continuation of Highway 120 through the park) will temporarily close today, October 31, at 6 pm, due to a forecast of snow. Plan accordingly to use an alternate route if needed (

Tire chains may be required on open roads ( Call 209/372-0200 (then 1, 1) to check current road conditions.

  • October 30, 2022

Haven’t you heard? It’s Bat Week! Yosemite National Park is home to 17 different bat species including the Spotted Bat (Euderma maculatum) which has the largest ears of any other bat in North America. Bats emit sounds which bounce off objects around them and back into their ears creating a picture of sound so they can navigate in the dark. While most bats emit at a frequency higher than humans can hear, the Spotted Bat and fellow Yosemite resident, the Western Mastiff Bat (Eumops perotis), can be heard clicking and chattering as they whizz through the night sky catching their meal of insects.

Are you spooked by bats? They’re not interested in eating you, they’re interested in eating bugs! They keep the mosquito and other harmful insect populations at bay, pollinate many of our favorite foods, and help plant populations by spreading seeds. Learn more about these often misportrayed and misunderstood animals at

  • October 14, 2022

Reminder that Sunday, October 16 we’ll be hosting our last virtual town hall to discuss the future of overnight big wall climbing in Yosemite’s vertical wilderness. We encourage you to join the conversation.
When: Sunday, October 16, 2022 from 3:00 to 5:00 pm PDT.
Learn more about project goals for long-term big wall stewardship:

  • October 13, 2022
    It's autumn and the leaves aren't the only thing coming down...

    The Half Dome cables are down for the season. With the cables down, we strongly discourage hikers from attempting to summit. Summiting Half Dome with the cables down requires technical knowledge, experience, and equipment. With autumn weather remaining good at least for the next several days, all other trails have good conditions. However, weather can change quickly and unexpectedly this time of year, so be sure check the weather forecast ( and be prepared for cold temperatures, rain, and even snow.

    The Half Dome cables are typically up from late May through early October, and a permit is required during that time:

  • October 11, 2022

    Yosemite National Park’s Ahwahnee Hotel to Undergo Major Upgrades
    Funded by the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA), Yosemite National Park was recently awarded an approximately $31.6 million construction contract to upgrade the historic Ahwahnee Hotel. The project includes a major seismic upgrade throughout the historic hotel as well as a kitchen renovation. Kitchen project work is currently underway and work to upgrading the seismic safety will begin near the end of the year.

    Learn more:

  • September 30, 2022

UPDATE: Yosemite National Park’s temporary peak-hours reservation system concludes today at 4 pm. An entry reservation will not be required to enter or drive through the park; entrance fees will still apply.

A huge shoutout to all the entrance station rangers, supporting park staff, and Yosemite Conservancy volunteers who serve as the face of Yosemite and are often the only park personnel that visitors interact with. Entrance station staff greeted an estimated 2 million visitors this summer!

The peak-hours reservation system was successful, and the park is grateful for the collaborative effort in implementing the system. The park is now analyzing data from this summer to evaluate the program and document what was learned this summer. The park continues to plan for future visitor access and will include the public in any planning efforts. Contact us and share your thoughts by visiting

  • September 9, 2022

From the trails to the firelines, wildland firefighters are serving smokin’ hot looks. Dressed from head to toe in personal protective equipment (PPE), wildland firefighters stay safe as they respond to fires within national parks and provide support for interagency partners.

- Helmets protect firefighters from falling branches and debris
- Safety glasses and sunglasses are essential pieces to keep eyes safe while battling fire and smoke
- Nomex shirt in bright yellow is made of flame-resistant material designed for protection and high visibility
- Backpack that stores water and a required fire shelter – a safety device that is deployed as a last resort when trapped in a wildfire
- Leather boots with high ankle support, are worn to travel long distances through harsh elements
- Leather gloves keep hands safe from burns and other injuries
- Nomex pants provide protection with plenty of pockets and are also made with flame-resistant material
- Tools such as a shovel are used to dig or scrap vegetation and soil to build a fireline.

Yosemite’s fire season started in June this year, but wildland firefighters and support personnel work all year to keep people and property safe while maintaining fire-adapted ecosystems. To catch up on fire news visit

  • September 6, 2022

Reminder that tomorrow we’ll be hosting a virtual town hall to discuss the future of overnight big wall climbing in Yosemite’s wilderness. This will be the first of our upcoming outreach events and we encourage you to join the conversation.

When: Wednesday, September 7, 2022 from 5:30 to 7:30 pm.
Where: Virtual Town Hall

  • September 2, 2022

We expect busy conditions in the park this weekend! #PlanLikeAParkRanger by reading the tips below to have an enjoyable and safe trip.

Air quality in Yosemite Valley has generally been very unhealthy in the mornings, improving to good to moderate in the afternoons. When AQI is very unhealthy, people sensitive to smoke should avoid all physical outdoor activity and everyone should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion. Check current air quality at

There are currently two fires in the wilderness: the #RodgersFire and #RedFire. Fire restrictions are in effect below 8,000 feet and smoking is restricted parkwide visit for details.

We are experiencing a heat wave. Bring and drink water throughout the day and plan your adventures accordingly by venturing out early or later in the day to avoid extreme heat. Eat salty snacks, or drink electrolyte beverages, to maintain a proper balance of electrolytes. Spend some time appreciating trees and rest frequently in the shade.

Cool down and avoid the smoke by visiting some indoor options like the Valley Visitor Center, Museum, The Ansel Adams Galley, or Happy Isles Art and Nature Center.

Chilling by the beach and taking a dip in the cool water is a great plan but did you know bears like beaches too? Make sure you keep food or any items with a scent (trash, sunblock, lip balm) within arm’s reach. You may also store food in your car during the day if all windows are completely closed and food is out of sight. Help us keep bears and all wildlife save -- never leave food unattended outside.

Reservations are required to drive into or through the park during peak hours, 6 am – 4 pm. Peak hour reservations are all sold out from 9/3 – 9/5. Not able to get a reservation? You can center the park before 6 am or after 4 pm (give yourself enough time to arrive by 6 am, if you arrive at an entrance station after 6 am you will be turned around).

  • September 1, 2022

It’s getting hot out here. So, make sure you’re prepared. Yosemite is experiencing a heat wave with temperatures reaching over 100°F in the Valley. Keep yourself cool by following these heat-safety tips:

  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water before, during, and after your adventures.

  • Eat salty snacks and/or drink beverages with electrolytes; electrolytes are equally important to keep your body hydrated.

  • Be mindful of your limits and take frequent rests in the shade.

  • Protect yourself by wearing sunprotective clothing and a hat to prevent your skin from getting sunburnt.

  • You might be in tiptop shape, but high elevation and high temperatures might hit different. Plan accordingly and avoid strenuous activity when temperatures are at their highest.

  • Know when you go. If you are going to the restroom frequently, you will need to replenish your body with fluids.

  • Take care of your furry friends by checking the heat of the pavement. If the road is too hot to the touch for you, it’ll be too hot for your pets.

When visiting Yosemite and any other outdoor space, it is important that you plan ahead and come prepared. For the park’s most up-to-date conditions, visit

  • August 26, 2022

Calling all big wall climbers! In 2023, Yosemite National Park will transition from the Wilderness Climbing Permit Pilot Program (in place in 2021 and 2022) to a long-term solution to address wilderness stewardship through management of overnight climbing on Yosemite’s big walls and other rock formations.

We will be accepting written comments through November 13, 2022 and hosting a series of townhall meetings and other outreach events. We want to hear from you!

Big wall climbing is a valued opportunity to experience Yosemite's wilderness. "Big wall climbing" includes climbs of length and technical complexity that require typical parties to take more than one day to complete.

Cumulative effects of big wall climbing have led to degradation of wilderness values. Issues include proliferation of litter, human waste, abandoned property, improperly stored food, illegal fire rings and wind breaks, and preventable accidents. Despite extensive efforts by Yosemite climbing rangers and climbing stewards to improve education and outreach to climbers, increase patrols, and coordinate targeted clean-ups, there are still unacceptable impacts to the Wilderness character of Yosemite climbing areas.

We plan to have the following options for you hear from park staff and share your thoughts:
Virtual Town Hall: Wednesday, September 7, 2022 at 5:30 to 7:30 pm
Live Event at Yosemite Facelift in the Valley Visitor Center Auditorium: Thursday, September 22, 2022 at 3:00 to 5:00 pm
Virtual Town Hall: Sunday, October 16, 2022 at 3:00 to 5:00 pm
Informal outreach at the “Bishop High Ball-Cragging Classic” Climbing Festival: Saturday, November 12, 2022

Learn more:

  • August 24, 2022

Labor Day weekend is approaching! As the “unofficial end of summer,” we expect increased visitation as many come to the park to enjoy one last vacation before the fall season.

If you are planning to visit during Labor Day weekend have your reservation ready. A reservation is required to drive into or through the park during peak hours, between 6 am and 4 pm. Learn more by visiting

Reservations for September 2 go on sale on August 26 at 8 am PDT. Reservations sell quickly so make sure you are logged on and ready at 8 am. Make your reservation by visiting

  • August 22, 2022

    Two natural, lightning ignited fires continue to burn in Yosemite’s Wilderness. The Red Fire is 749 acres, and the Rodgers Fire is 150 acres. Both fires are being managed by fire crews and firefighters continue to work to confine and contain them within natural barriers.

    With a recent increase in temperatures, along with a high-pressure system, air quality may be affected in various areas of the high country and in Yosemite Valley for the remainder of the week. Some smoke is visible in the Tuolumne Meadows area, and a pattern of smoke settling in Yosemite Valley during the night, with improving conditions beginning in late morning is expected. The best time of day is late afternoon into early evening.

    For the most part, these fires are low intensity, creeping, and smoldering through the smaller fuels and burning through mostly dead trees and brush. Ultimately, managing these fires will result in a healthier forest.

    A temporary trail closure is in place in Rodgers Canyon from Neall Lake to the junction with Table Lake. There are no threats to infrastructure.

    For more information:

  • August 18, 2022

We will celebrate the legacy of Yosemite and California artist Chiura Obata by providing a wide array of programs and activities, including art classes and demonstrations with professional artists, special ranger programs, a social hour, and guest speaker Kimi Hill (Obata Family Historian). You can find a schedule of programs at

A reservation is required to drive into Yosemite if arriving between 6 am and 4 pm, even if attending these programs. Visit for more information.

  • August 12, 2022

We are sad to report that pioneering Yosemite scientist Jan van Wagtendonk died on July 15.

Jan was a Yosemite and National Park Service legend: an accomplished scientist, a preeminent fire ecologist, a wilderness advocate, and a beloved colleague. He was an innovative wilderness manager, coming up with the trailhead quota system that we still use today to protect wilderness while ensuring that hikers are free to enjoy that wilderness on their own terms. His impact affects fire policy to this day as one of the authors of the first federal fire policy in 1995. Jan possessed an amazing intellect, deep humility, a sharp wit, and a profound love of Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada.

Jan was a strong advocate for returning fire to the Sierra landscape. His pioneering use of prescribed fire in the early 1970s in and around the Mariposa Grove started us on the path to reestablishing an ecological balance lost in over 100 years of fire suppression.

There is poetry, in the words of Jan's son Kent, that in Jan's final days the fruits of those efforts had a direct and dramatic effect in saving the Mariposa Grove from the Washburn fire, which started just outside of the grove.

Our heartfelt condolences to Jan's family and wide circle of friends and colleagues. He was one of a kind, and will be deeply missed.

You can learn more about Jan and his accomplishments at

  • August 10, 2022

Are you a recent graduate in Geographic Information Systems (GIS)? Consider putting your data visualization and spatial information skills to work at Yosemite!

Thre GIS internships starting this fall at Yosemite National Park are currently open for applications from students and recent graduates (within 2 years). Work schedule is 40 hours per week.

Data Visualization Internship (Oct 10-Feb 17)
This intern will work with hydrologists and physical scientists in the Resource Management and Science Division to develop a Physical Sciences Dashboard that integrates and visualizes climate, hydrology, and air quality station data.

Facilities GIS Internship (Oct 10-Apr 14)
This intern will work with engineers and facility managers in the Facilities Management Division to develop facilities GIS data, mobile data applications, and maps for use by park staff responsible for maintaining buildings, utilities, roads, and other park infrastructure.

Project Planning GIS Internship (Oct 10-Apr 14)
This intern will work with compliance specialists and project managers in the Strategic Planning and Project Management Division to develop a Project Tracking Dashboard and streamline processes for making maps and sharing and accessing geospatial data used for project review.

If interested, please apply at IIC Internships | SUU by August 31.

  • August 4, 2022

Today is #GreatAmericanOutdoorsDay, in honor of the second anniversary of the Great American Outdoors Act! This landmark legislation provides funding to improve infrastructure and expand recreation opportunities in national parks and other public lands. One of the projects funded in part by the Great American Outdoors Act is the Glacier Point Road rehabilitation project. While the road is closed this year, we are planning to reopen it (with delays) in late spring 2023.

We are not just completely repaving the deteriorating Glacier Point Road, but also:

  • Repairing curves leading down to Glacier Point. This road segment contains steep and narrow hairpin curves that drop 600 feet over 1.6 miles.

  • Improving the pullout overlooking the Clark Range to address safety hazards.

  • Repairing road areas west of Summit Meadow to prevent the continued settlement of the road.

  • Paving the overflow parking area at Sentinel Dome trailhead and adding accessible vault toilets.

  • Formalizing McGurk Meadow Trailhead parking area to increase safety.

  • Repaving the Glacier Point parking area.

Learn more about this project at

Glacier Point Road Project - 2022 and 2023 - Yosemite National Park (U.S. National Park Service)

  • August 3, 2022

    We can bearly contain our excitement that the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias reopened today! The Mariposa Grove shuttle has resumed operation. Air quality is good to moderate with blue skies.

    The following trails remain closed:

    Please stay on trails: hazards may exist off trail. Firefighters will continue patrolling the area until the fire is declared out.

    Learn more about visiting the Mariposa Grove at A reservation is required to drive into or through Yosemite:

    And, finally, remember to stay 50 yards away from bears! If a bear approaches you, scare it away immediately by yelling as loudly and aggressively as possible.

    • The Washburn Trail (between the Mariposa Grove Welcome Plaza and the Arrival Area).

    • The western portion of the Perimeter Trail (from the Galen Clark Tree to near the Grizzly Giant Loop Trail).

    • The trail from the Mariposa Grove toward Wawona

  • July 25, 2022

    The community of Wawona (including the Wawona Hotel and vacation rentals) will reopen to the public on Thursday, July 28, at noon.

    The wilderness area north of Wawona opens today, Monday, July 25, and the fire advisory has been lifted for the wilderness area.

    The Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias and the Wawona Campground remain closed due to the Washburn fire. You can find Washburn fire updates at

    All other areas of Yosemite are open, although a reservation is required to drive into the park if arriving between 6 am and 4 pm:

    The Oak fire is currently burning west of Yosemite in the Mariposa/Midpines area. This fire has caused the closure of Highway 140 west of Mariposa and has resulted in poor air quality. You can check on air quality at and get Oak fire updates at

  • July 16, 2022


Smoking is now restricted parkwide and fire restrictions are in effect below 8,000 feet.

Smoking is only allowed in enclosed personal vehicles, in open frontcountry campgrounds and picnic areas in which fires are allowed, and while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of flammable material.

Wood and charcoal fires are still allowed in open frontcountry campgrounds and in open picnic areas that have fire grates. Fires are not allowed elsewhere, including in the wilderness (below 8,000 feet).

All the normal fire regulations still apply. Visit for more information.

The Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias has seen minimal fire impacts due to a long history of prescribed burning and a proactive fire management and fuels reduction program. As a result, there have been no known loss of any large giant sequoias. This is in contrast to the nearly 20% loss of giant sequoia in the last few years during large-scale wildfires. Conditions in the fire perimeter include heavy dead and down vegetation due to a mono wind event in 2021, effects of climate change and drought, and bark beetle kill. -- @yosemitefire

You can also learn more about how fire can be both good and bad for sequoias by visiting

  • July 3, 2022

In the last several weeks, National Park Service personnel trained on both short-haul and hoist operations. Rescuers, firefighters, and/or patients can be inserted or extracted, even from vertical terrain, via helicopter using either short haul or hoist. What's the difference?

Short haul is how the park's contract helicopter inserts or extracts rescuers, firefighters, and/or patients in a harness or litter. They are suspended a fixed distance under the helicopter (typically 150 feet, but up to 250 feet) and picked up and dropped off. The park contract helicopter is used for various mission, including dropping water on fires, transporting people, transporting material, and searching for missing people.

When the park helicopter is unavailable, a California Highway Patrol helicopter may respond equipped with a hoist. In this case, the rescuer starts out inside the helicopter and is lowered to the ground to be inserted, or a rescuer or patient is hoisted from the ground into to the helicopter. Another type of insertion is via rappel, in which rescuers or firefighters’ rappel from the helicopter as it hovers up to 300 feet above the ground.

The search and rescue team and firefighters are ready to help, but we hope you will never need their services. Before your next trip to Yosemite, visit the Preventive Search and Rescue Blog to read about safety tips:

  • July 2, 2022

Today marks National Wildland Firefighter Day, a day recognizing the nation’s wildland firefighters and support personnel. As summer progresses and temperatures rise, the threat of wildfires increases. Yosemite firefighters and support staff rise to the challenge of protecting lives, property, and the cultural and natural resources of the park. Thank you to all the wildland firefighters, rescuers, and support staff in Yosemite and across the country.

Help firefighters prevent accidental wildfires. Never leave a fire unattended and make sure that campfires and barbeques are completely out and cold to the touch before leaving a campsite or picnic area. Learn more safety tips by visiting

  • July 1, 2022

Hiking, picnicking, spending time with family and friends, or simply enjoying time outdoors: there are many ways to recreate and celebrate Fourth of July at Yosemite National Park. Here are some reminders if you’re planning to visit during the Independence Day weekend:

  • Yes, you guessed it right. Make sure you have an entry reservation when driving into or driving through the park between 6 am – 4 pm. Learn more about entry reservations by visiting

  • If you are planning to arrive after 4 pm, please do not arrive at a park entrance station until after 4 pm. Do not try to arrive early.

  • Consider using the Yosemite Area Regional Transportation System - YARTS to get to the park (you do not need an entry reservation when taking YARTS). A reservation is strongly recommended. Learn more about YARTS by visiting

  • Masks are again required indoors and in enclosed public transportation due to high COVID-19 community levels.

  • Fireworks are strictly prohibited in the park. If you have a barbeque or campfire, make sure the coals are cold to the touch before leaving.

  • Take care of yourself. Be aware of the signs of overheating and overexertion. Be mindful of warm temperatures and drink plenty of water.

  • Do not arrive at Yosemite without an overnight reservation if you plan to spend the night. All campgrounds are sold out through the Fourth of July weekend. Camping or sleeping in a vehicle is only allowed at a campsite you have reserved.

We all recreate outdoors and celebrate the holiday in our own way. Be kind to fellow visitors and have fun!

  • June 14, 2022

Planning on visiting Yosemite with your dog? As much as we love our furry family members, national parks are not always the best place for pets. The B.A.R.K. Ranger Code is an easy way to remember how to visit Yosemite responsibly by doing the following: Bag your pet’s waste, Always leash your pet, Respect Wildlife, and Know where you can go. Help keep Yosemite wild by always abiding by the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code on your visit, or leave your pet at home if this might be difficult. Pets who do not follow the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code can damage park resources, disturb wildlife in their natural habitat, participate in unsafe activities, and impact the experience of other visitors. Learn more:

  • June 9, 2022

    Yes, it is another peak hour reservation post! Father’s Day and Juneenth are coming up! If you are planning to visit Yosemite during the upcoming holiday weekend, make sure you have an entry reservation when driving into (or driving through) the park during peak hours, 6 am - 4 pm. You can learn more by visiting

    Remaining reservations for June 18 will go on sale on June 11 at 8 am PDT. Make your reservation at We expect reservations to sell out quickly, so make sure you are logged on and ready at 8 am.

    The peak hour entry reservation system is in place till September 30, 2022. The reservation system helps manage traffic congestion and provide quality experiences while numerous areas are closed for critical repair. Get the scoop on current projects by visiting These repairs will benefit current and future generations of visitors.

  • May 31, 2022

    Driving up Highway 120 of Tioga Pass, you’ll see Chiura Obata’s sign near the eastern entrance of Yosemite National Park. Last August, the road was dedicated to honor Chiura Obata’s life, work, and legacy. Park staff from Yosemite National Park, Honouliuli National Historic Site, Manzanar National Historic Site, Channel Islands National Park and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area were present for the dedication ceremony, as well as two of Obata’s grandchildren, Kei Kodani and Kimi Hill.

    Chiura Obata (1885-1975) was a renowned Japanese American artist and one of California’s most influential artists of the 20th century. Obata first visited Yosemite in 1927 for a six-week trip to the High Sierra where he spent his time sketching and painting the tall granite peaks, sparkling lakes, and dramatic views. This landscape profoundly impacted the rest of his career and deepened his love for Dai-Shizen, or “Great Nature,” the powerful influence the natural world has on our lives.

    Although Obata went on to become a professor at UC Berkeley in 1932, he and his family, along with people of Japanese ancestry living in the west, were incarcerated after the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. Sent to Tanoan Assembly Center and Topaz Relocation Center, Obata continued to create artwork and co-founded art schools in these camps to serve his community.

    Through his dedication, many others were able to take up art during the most treacherous of times, creating connections with the landscape, with each other, and with their own humanity through Obata’s programs.

    You can see some of this work at

    Lead by Robert Hanna, a descendant of conservationist John Muir, the Chiura Obata Great Nature Memorial Highway will continue to serve as a stunning reminder of the unique artistic and historical influence the eastern Sierra holds as well as the diverse history of our parks.

    Tioga Road is open for the season. A reservation is required to drive through the park (, although the sign is reachable from the east side before entering the park.

  • May 27, 2022
    The rivers, creeks, and waterfalls in Yosemite are beautiful, but they are also very unpredictable and dangerous. Safely enjoy Yosemite’s water features by staying on trails and using bridges to cross rivers and streams.

    Most accidents happen when people get too close to water to take photos, to play on rocks, or to take a quick dip to cool off. Be mindful that swift and powerful currents flow beneath seemingly calm water. Boulders next to rivers and waterfalls are extremely slick and treacherous to walk or climb on.

    Never underestimate the power of water. Please stay on trails and be aware of your surroundings.

    If you plan to raft the Merced River, everyone on a raft must wear a personal flotation device. You can only put in your raft at or below Stoneman’s Bridge. In Yosemite Valley, the river is closed above Stoneman Bridge and below El Capitan Bridge. Plan accordingly and learn more about water activities by visiting:

  • May 16, 2022

Exciting news! The Half Dome cables will be up for the season on Thursday, May 19, 2022. A permit is required to summit Half Dome. Most permits are available via a preseason lottery, but a limited number are available every day, two days in advance. All permits for May 19–May 26 will become available two days in advance. See for details.

If you will be hiking to Half Dome, be prepared with several liters of water, good hiking footwear, and a headlamp (with extra batteries). Be prepared to turn around if a thunderstorm appears possible. Stay back from the Merced River, which is running at high flow right now. If you see a bear on the trail or approaching you, scare it away by yelling loudly, aggressively, and persistently. Always keep your food within arm's reach. And enjoy the hike!

  • May 9, 2022

    Happy Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month! During the month of May we celebrate the contributions and legacies of Asians and Pacific Islanders that have shaped the United States.

    Yosemite National Park would not be the park we love and cherish today without the work of Chinese immigrants. They built many of the park’s early roads and were employed as cooks, gardeners, and laundry workers. Yosemite Park Ranger Yenyen Chan spent many years uncovering the Chinese history in the park. Chan’s efforts and the legacy of the Chinese workers can inspire us to continue to preserve and tell the diverse stories of our parks.

    Check out the video from the Today Show which features Ranger Yenyen Chan and the Chinese Laundry Building Exhibit, which is expected to open this month!

    Thanks to Yosemite Conservancy Conservancy and its generous donors for their support of this project

  • May 5, 2022

Our Resources Management and Science Division is recruiting a Science Coordinator, GS-12, to support strategic planning, decision support, and coordination of internal and external research. More information and instructions on how to apply are available at

Please note this announcement is only open until May 11, or until 50 applications have been received, whichever comes first.

Are you new to the federal hiring system? A two-page business resume won't cut it. Check out these tips for developing a federal resume:

(If you're wondering about the colored stripes alongside a waterfall, learn more about lichens at

  • April 26, 2022

A reservation will be required to drive into or through Yosemite between 6 am and 4 pm from May 20 through September 30. (No reservation is required if visiting before May 20.)

Seventy percent of peak-hour reservations became available on March 23, and most of these (51%) are still available: only 18 days have sold out so far. You can make a peak-hours reservation at
The remaining 30% of peak-hour reservations will become available every day, seven days in advance, starting May 13.

You can learn more about what reservations are valid for entry and other details about the peak-hour reservation system at

  • April 25, 2022

    Great news! Reservations will be released for the Wawona Campground on April 27 at 7 am PDT for arrival dates beginning April 28 through September 14:

    We will have updates about reservation availability for Tamarack Flat, White Wolf, and Yosemite Creek campgrounds soon. You can always find campground updates at

  • April 14, 2022

    With this post, the Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers say goodbye for now, recollecting this "upside-down" winter with big early snow followed by record dry months and contemplating what a warmer climate means for Lyell "glacier," spring runoff, and high-country wildlife.

  • April 13, 2022

    What is faster than a race car, can see a meal up to a mile away, and is exquisitely engineered for a vertical lifestyle?

    A peregrine falcon, falco peregrinus!

    The peregrine falcon was once extirpated from much of its native range, including Yosemite where it disappeared for decades, leading to its listing as an endangered species in the early 1970s. Because of the collaborative efforts of Yosemite climbers, Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group, and National Park Service biologists, with generous funding from Yosemite Conservancy, the story of Yosemite’s peregrine falcon is one of hope.

    In an era fraught with what often feels like insurmountable challenges, what does it mean to keep trying?

    Watch the video (captions and audio description available).

  • April 11, 2002

    Pop quiz! How many links in a chain? How many chains in a furlong? How many square feet in an acre? How many sections in a township? If you know the answers to these questions, you may be the person we’re looking for!

    If you are a Professional Land Surveyor (PLS) or Land Surveyor in Training (LSIT) ready to achieve a California PLS license within the next two years, consider a career with the National Park Service in one of the most beautiful places on earth.

    The Design & Engineering Branch, located within the Facilities Management Division in stunning Yosemite National Park, is currently accepting applications for a Land Surveyor position. As the park’s primary surveyor, you will be conducting topographic surveys throughout the 1,200 square mile park in support of a team engaged in the planning, design, repair, rehabilitation, and construction of park facilities and infrastructure. You'll also serve as the park's technical expert on cadastral survey matters. You will also prepare maps and drawings of existing conditions and topography using CAD software, as well as maintaining the accuracy of the park’s CAD base mapping. You’ll be working closely with our Enterprise Geographic Information System (EGIS) program to maintain consistency between CAD base maps and EGIS data.

    Yosemite is a world-class park with summer activities ranging from hiking, backpacking, fishing, and climbing complemented by cross-country skiing, downhill skiing, and snowshoeing in the winter. Work schedule is typically 9 hours Monday – Thursday with Friday alternating between an 8 hour day and an “off” day. Annual Leave starts at 13 days per year and increases to 19.5 days and 26 days when 3 and 15 years of federal service are accumulated respectively. The flexible work schedule combined with outdoor opportunities makes for a unique and exciting work-life balance.

    Learn more:

    Are you new to the federal hiring system? A two-page business resume won't cut it. Check out these tips for developing a federal resume:

  • April 7, 2022

    After completing some of the snow surveys, Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers Laura and Rob reflected on what they're seeing:

    "The March weather summary tells the tale of the third month in a row of much drier and warmer weather for the winter. Equally concerning are the snow survey results for the April 1 surveys, which historically indicate the peak of water content in the Sierra Nevada snowpack. The Tuolumne River drainage comes in at 41% of 'average' for snow water equivalent. This average is derived from 91 years of snow surveying in this drainage. Although there have certainly been drier single winters during this period, the more alarming fact is the persistence of the drought over the past twenty years. As the drier-than-average years pile up with only a few wet ones thrown into the mix, the cumulative effects of drought become more apparent. In our short eleven-winter tenure here, we have seen the impacts of the drought, most notably in the tree mortality of the mid-elevation fir forests. Many dead trees stand with their needles still on them. Even the towering red firs that we once skied through to get to our Snow Flat survey are now just bare 200-foot-tall snags. And the 'drought tolerant' junipers on the south slopes of Mt Hoffmann are struggling for survival."

    On the bright side, conditions for skiing are still good right now! Read more at

  • March 31, 2022
    A brief return to winter brought 8 inches of new snow to Tuolumne Meadows last week, allowing our winter rangers to enjoy good ski conditions as they conducted various work projects from their base camp near Evelyn Lake. Even though warmer temperatures are creating more bare ground, skis or snowshoes are still strongly recommended for visiting the Yosemite high country. Their snow travel tip of the week discusses how to navigate snow bridges safely in spring. It’s very important to make safe decisions in order to avoid hazards below or downstream from these rapidly disappearing crossings. The signs of spring continue with more bird sightings, and evidence of bighorn sheep, badgers, and bears. Read all about it in this week’s blog post:

  • March 29, 2022
    Recent engineering graduates, consider an engineering career with the National Park Service!
    Yosemite National Park is currently accepting applications for entry-level Project Engineer positions located in the Strategic Planning and Project Management Division. This position will provide the opportunity to work on a variety of interesting water, wastewater, road, and building projects. The range of experience will cover the full gamut of a project life-cycle; from planning, design, and construction along with contract management. We will also provide training, mentorship, and experience to assist in acquiring professional licensure.

    Yosemite is a world-class park with summer activities ranging from hiking, backpacking, fishing, and climbing complemented by cross-country skiing, downhill skiing, and snowshoeing in the winter. Work schedule is typically 9 hours Monday – Thursday with Friday alternating between an 8 hour day and an “off” day Annual Leave starts at 13 days per year and increases to 19.5 days and 26 days when 3 and 15 years of federal service are accumulated respectively. The flexible work schedule combined with outdoor opportunities makes for a unique and exciting work-life balance. If interested, please apply at: (GS-7) (GS-5)

  • March 28, 2022
    Have you ever dreamed of working in Yosemite for the summer? We have openings for our seasonal custodial staff. This work is not only essential for making Yosemite an enjoyable place to visit but it is also a key part of how we protect this park and its wildlife.
    Summers in Yosemite are always memorable and there are outdoor and community opportunities to fit all personalities.
    If interested, please apply at:

  • March 23, 2022
    Snow is melting faster this week in Tuolumne Meadows as the weather is reaching near record high temperatures. For our winter rangers, the mating calls of birds and sound of rushing water now compete with the sound of the wind in the trees. This spring-like weather makes for a variety of conditions above 7,000 feet where creative route finding is necessary as the snow on south facing slopes at all elevations is becoming a patchwork of bare ground and snow. That said, the skate ski conditions along the Tioga Road and in Tuolumne Meadows are some of the best they’ve seen in the past decade despite the lack of new snow in 2022. Learn more about ski and avalanche conditions, their pro tip of the week, and about wildlife activity in the high country:

  • March 22, 2022

    If you'll be visiting Yosemite between May 20 and September 30, you will need a reservation to drive into the park between 6 am and 4 pm.

    Peak-hours reservations become available Wednesday, March 23, at 8 am PDT. They will sell quickly, so create an account on now. Be logged in and ready to go at 8 am PDT on March 23.

    Some other reservations are also valid for driving into Yosemite during peak hours. For more information:

  • March 21, 2022
    If you'll be visiting Yosemite between May 20 and September 30, you will need a reservation to drive into the park between 6 am and 4 pm.

    Peak-hours reservations become available Wednesday, March 23, at 8 am PDT. They will sell quickly, so create an account on now. Be logged in and ready to go at 8 am PDT on March 23.

    Some other reservations are also valid for driving into Yosemite during peak hours. For more information:

  • March 16, 2022

"The more things change, the more they stay they same." Find out what has, and hasn't, changed and who's feeling the spring fever in this week's Tuolumne Meadows Winter Ranger blog.

  • March 13, 2022

Visiting a national park this summer? Plan Your Vacation Like a Ranger.

  • March 10, 2022

Today, March 10, marks the 35-year anniversary of the 1987 Middle Brother rockfall, one of Yosemite’s most notable historical rockfalls. For more information on how geologists measured the rockfall volume, see

  • March 8, 2022
    In only seven days, our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers experienced practically all four seasons’ weather! Starting with freezing temperatures at night, then warm spring-like days with increasingly abundant sunshine, and finally a return to winter with snow showers and northeast winds at the end of the week. With five inches of new snow, the ski conditions are variable depending on the aspect and elevation with good coverage between 8,000 and 11,000 feet on all but south aspects. Current snow depths in the Tuolumne Meadows area range from 3 to 6 feet. Weasel tracks, current avalanche conditions, and uses for carrying hot water on your winter ski adventures round out this week’s update; learn more:

  • March 1, 2022

    Another month has come and gone, and our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers are still waiting for snow. With only 3 inches of snow in February, it was another warmer and drier than average month. They are still finding decent touring conditions and experiencing fluctuating temperatures (this week saw their coldest temperatures of the winter and some of the warmest). Check out this week's blog post for more information on ski and avalanche conditions, tips about ski wax, and recent wildlife activity:

  • February 27, 2022
    With a steady flow of water and a recent dip in temperatures, Yosemite Creek had a short-lived episode of frazil ice. Under the right conditions turbulent water will become supercooled, reaching temperatures below freezing. Ice crystals can form quickly and accumulate into a slushy flow that might back up and spill over chaotically in the creek drainage. The aftermath looks like tongues of chunky ice filling in between dry creek banks.Warmer weather means we don’t expect see this in the coming weeks, though it is more common in March and April. To learn more and see in frazil ice in action watch Yosemite Nature Notes 9: Frazil Ice

  • February 24, 2022

Yosemite Nature Notes 34: Giant Sequoias
Giant sequoia trees are impressive in size, age, and resilience. This resilience is being tested by climate change and previous management practices. These challenges offer opportunities to research these wonderful trees and develop better ways to support their ability to thrive. Video (U.S. National Park Service) (

  • February 23, 2022

Finally some snow to speak of, an exciting meet-up with biologists, and Yosemite's connection with the winter Olympics. Catch up with the Tuolumne Rangers in this week's blog

  • February 17, 2022

At the park’s lower elevations it can be hard lately to remember that it is winter. Yosemite Valley has had recent highs in the 70s and the snow patches have gotten thin. The Tuolumne rangers still have plenty of snow to explore but after six dry weeks even the high country is feeling dry. As always, they have some fun observations in their weekly update:

  • February 9, 2022

    Still no new snow, but lots of wind! Lately it seems that the only variable in Tuolumne Meadows is how high the winds are blowing. Snow coverage in the Tuolumne Meadows area remains excellent but our winter rangers are seeing more bare ground being exposed in other areas. Learn more about their patrol along the Tuolumne River to Glen Aulin, adjustable ski poles, and brown creepers in this week’s post:

  • Februray 4, 2022
    Yosemite Rockfall Year in Review: 2021
    2021 proved to be a relatively mild year for rockfalls and other slope movements in Yosemite. Forty-seven rockfalls were documented in 2021, with a cumulative volume of about 1,570 cubic meters (4,670 tons). Both metrics are below recent averages, perhaps related to below-average precipitation in 2021.

  • February 2, 2022

    While compiling the January weather data, our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers had only one lone entry of a trace amount of snow during a record dry month at their weather plot. The good news is that the heavy snows of December have left a central Sierra Nevada snowpack that is still 92% of “normal” for February 1. This percent of normal number is derived from the February 1 snow surveys, and the automated snow sensors that are scattered throughout the state.

    With no recent snow, the high alpine snow surface is wind hardened and textured. For these conditions, this week they share a lot of suggestions and information about equipment, specifically about “skins.” Ever wonder how backcountry skiers travel uphill with a little more ease? Historically, various Arctic inhabitants attached seal skins to the base of skis to gain traction on the snow. The modern version of climbing skins is typically made of either nylon, mohair (Angora goat hair), or a blend. Check out this week’s blog entry for more tips, a January data summary, and some winter birding observations:

  • January 26, 2022
    The only storm our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers saw last week was one that brought wind. Though not a “Mono Wind” event, the windstorm brought strong winds for 48 hours, with some gusts exceeding 100 mph along the crest! This further textured, hardened, scoured, sublimated, and eroded the alpine snowpack. Because the snow has set up more, coyotes and other critters that don’t have wide, snowshoe like feet are able to travel farther distances without as much effort, which helps to conserve their energy. Check out this week’s entry to learn more about mammal tracks, touring conditions, and tips about gear for easier snow travel:

  • January 24, 2022
    Last week fire crews completed ignition of 50 burn piles around the Hetch Hetchy Entrance Station and 10 piles in the Mariposa Grove. As weather and air quality conditions allow, starting tomorrow, January 25, through the end of the week, fire crews plan to continue work in the Mariposa Grove and Wawona area, as well as around Crane Flat. Smoke may be present throughout burning operations and may linger into the following weeks as larger logs are consumed.

    Mechanical thinning (the removal of some trees to reduce hazards and/or density in a forest) and pile burning is one of our fire management tools that helps to prevent larger fires. It also provides "defensible space" around structures in the event of an unwanted fire, which can help firefighters better defend buildings and communities. Burning some of the debris in place allows us to reintroduce limited healthy fire to these areas and continue cycling nutrients back into the soil.

    Learn more about fire management at Yosemite:

  • January 19, 2022

    Our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers patrolled west last week and experienced a wide range of snow and ski conditions. If approaching the high country from Yosemite Valley, you should anticipate hitting snow line just below 7,000 feet, and if coming from east of Tioga Pass, snow line starts around 8,000 feet. With many places of firm snow out there, the rangers share some great tips about when and how to use ski crampons. Other observations last week included the elusive sooty grouse, old avalanches along the Tioga Road, and some pretty sweet sunsets! Check it out:

  • January 14, 2022

If you are wanting to apply for the North Pines Campground early access lottery, the application period runs from January 18 through February 6, 2022. You may apply at any time during the open period to be entered in the lottery. Lottery is for reservations from July 21 through September 14, 2022. Please read the webpage thoroughly for further information.

For those of you who want to make campground reservations with the traditional method those will open tomorrow, January 15, at 7am Pacific time for May 15 through June 14, 2022 for reservations at Upper Pines, North Pines, Lower Pines, and Hodgdon Meadow campgrounds. You can read about making a reservation on the park webpage.

  • January 12, 2022
    Warm and windy days brought a grab bag of ski conditions for our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers last week: wind crust, sun crust, breakable, supportable, soft, hard, and ice! Looking for snow travel tips when it comes to skis, bindings, and boots for these high country conditions? You’ll find some in this week’s blog post. Rob and Laura are currently on patrol to dig out one of the snow survey huts in preparation for the park's first snow survey of the year later this month, so we’ll see what this week brings for them as they head west from Tuolumne Meadows. Check out their weekly update:

  • January 7. 2022
    “I think we are programed to go for adventures, to explore, to acquire on our own, and you can’t convey that on a television screen. It has to be done kinesthetically, hands on.” - E.O. Wilson

    The influential scientist, naturalist, and conservationist Edward O. Wilson passed away in the last week of 2021 at the age of 92. A childhood vison injury led him to focus on the small things in nature. He took this inspiration to the far corners of the globe as perhaps the foremost researcher on ants, but also as a synthesizer of ecological relationships and a contributor to the understanding of biodiversity.

    His most lasting contribution might be in passing on his exuberance for discovery across many generations and sharing his passion for all living things. In the 1980s he coined the term biophilia for the common desire in humans to seek connections with nature. Wilson believed that fostering this innate love of life in all its forms was the surest way to protect it for future generations.

    Wilson saw the value in national parks and other protected landscapes as both refugia for biodiversity and places to inspire human connection with the other living things in nature. Yosemite rangers had the pleasure of hosting E.O. Wilson on a visit here about ten years ago. After a long career filled with the advancement of knowledge but also the frustration of witnessing firsthand the catastrophic loss of species, he still showed his graciousness and wonder. His life was an embodiment that our inspiration from nature has no bounds. That, in fact, finding joy in ecological exploration leads to even more wonder. That, just as ecosystems thrive by mutual relationships, humans thrive through mutual inspiration.

    Visit the National Park Service website to join that inspirational Yosemite encounter:

  • January 5, 2022:
    After catching up on snow removal activities close to home, the Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers were able to venture out a bit further to explore wind scoured slopes, break trail to reach Tioga Pass, and find evidence of winter residents such as the snowshoe hare in Gaylor Lakes Basin. Check out this week’s blog post to learn more about current conditions and ski-related snow travel tips:

  • January 2, 2022:

January 2 marks the 25th anniversary of the 1997 flood in Yosemite Valley, the most damaging flood in Yosemite’s recorded history.
For dramatic footage of the event go to:

  • December 29, 2021:
    Let it snow! With 78 inches of new snow this past week in Tuolumne Meadows, it marked the snowiest December on record (since 1980). While this doesn’t translate to the most water, the fresh snow has kept our winter rangers busy shoveling, breaking trail, and collecting data.

    An important distinction to make is the difference between “new snow” or the amount of snow falling in a 24 hour period (measured on a “storm board” which is cleared every 24 hours: HN24), the settled snow depth (measured by a permanent snow stake that fluctuates throughout the winter as new snow falls and settles over time: HS), and the water content of new snow (the method historically used here is to melt the snow gathered in a rain gauge and then measure the height of the water in a calibrated cylinder every 24 hours: HN24W). By this metric there have been wetter Decembers based on water content (perhaps there was rain, and/or the snow had a higher water content), but the 154 inches of snow measured so far this month is the “highest” recorded at the Tuolumne Meadows plot in 42 years of record keeping!

    Read more about the ski and avalanche conditions our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers encountered this week:

  • December 27, 2021:
    Paintings of Yosemite - Yosemite National Park (U.S. National Park Service) ( If your parks are feeling remote during the winter season, we invite you to explore them with resources like our Then & Now webpages. On this page we try to literally put you in the footsteps of some of the wonderful painters that have been inspired by the landscapes of Yosemite. In what ways have you brought home inspiration from your visits to your public lands?

  • December 23, 2021:
    Along with the arrival of winter came our Tuolumne Meadows rangers! They’ve spent the last couple of weeks getting settled into the high country and things sure have changed since they got here on December 5. What started out as the driest conditions they’d seen since their first season in 2011-12, have now become a winter wonderland, with snow blanketing the Sierra Nevada in its white winter coat. Learn more about the current conditions in the Tuolumne Meadows area, including avalanche activity, recent wildlife sightings, and how the start to their season is going: Follow the blog for regular weekly updates!

  • December 13, 2021:
    Does winter weather have you "parked" at home? Relax and enjoy this video captruing a variety of Yosemite moments. #ParkedAtHome

    For an audio desribed version you can find it here:

  • December 3, 2021: We are piloting a lottery system for North Pines Campground reservations for arrival dates from July 21 through September 14, 2022. Successful lottery applicants will have an opportunity to make a reservation for campsites in North Pines Campground during an early access period. The early access period will occur before the traditional on-sale dates, with any remaining availability becoming available on the usual on-sale dates. You can find the details at

  • The demand for reservations in Yosemite campgrounds through far exceeds availability, especially in Yosemite Valley during the busiest times of the year. This has been the case for decades and demand has only increased over time. More than ten thousand people visit during Yosemite’s on-sale dates in hopes of getting a reservation. On the busiest on-sale dates, reservations sell out in minutes. Hopeful campers take days off work and recruit family and friends to simultaneously try to make any possible reservation. Still, many are unsuccessful year after year, causing frustration, disappointment, and feeling the system is flawed and unfair. We regularly receive complaints from users saying they were unsuccessful because they are not computer savvy, their computers or internet connection are not fast enough, or that bots (automated computer systems) got all the reservations, or that some users receive preferential treatment. The early access lottery pilot is an attempt to address these concerns. Based on an equitable, randomized system, the lottery assigns a limited number of successful applicants a period before the general on-sale during which they can make a reservation. While the lottery does not guarantee your desired dates or campsite will be available, it limits the number of users competing simultaneously for campsites during peak-season dates.

  • November 29, 2021:

    JOB OPPORTUNITY: Architect
    Did You Know? There are over a thousand buildings in Yosemite National Park's inventory, and these buildings are, on average, over 75 years old! Designing for the preservation and rehabilitation of these older, and often historic, facilities can be a complex series of challenges for architects and engineers. It is a fine balance between meeting modern building codes for safety, sustainability, and accessibility while preserving and protecting the historic fabric of a facility for future generations to enjoy.

    If you are an architect with a passion for historic preservation and experience with design and construction of rehabilitation projects, and want to be part of preserving the past and determining the future for facilities at Yosemite National Park, consider applying to this opportunity with the park’s Design & Engineering team. In this job you will perform condition assessments, complete design and contract documents for repair and rehabilitation projects, manage design and construction contractors, and ensure that projects meet National Historic Preservation Act requirements. Learn more:

    Are you new to the federal hiring system? A one-page business resume won't cut it. Check out these tips for developing a federal resume:

  • October 13, 2021:

    Fall has arrived, bringing cooler, wetter weather. In anticipation of favorable conditions, we are planning to build on our 51-year legacy of prescribed burning by conducting several prescribed burns. The proposed burns are in western Yosemite Valley, Crane Flat area, and just south of Wawona (Studhorse). Burning of debris piles is planned in several other locations throughout the park this fall and winter.

    Prescribed fire is the most effective and efficient way to decrease the risk of unwanted wildfires; smaller prescribed fires now prevent larger uncontrolled fires (and widespread smoke) later. Fire reduces accumulation of pine needles and cones, down branches, and smaller plants and trees, allowing larger, more fire-resistant trees to thrive and keeping forests healthy. Frequent fire also improves habitat for wildlife, promotes giant sequoia reproduction, and makes forests more resistant to drought. Recognizing its many benefits, Native people have used fire on the Yosemite landscape for thousands of years.

    You can find details on these proposed burns at We will announce burn dates if or when conditions allow.

  • September 17, 2021:

    Air quality reached unhealthy levels throughout the park this afternoon. While air quality should improve over the next few days, be prepared to reduce outdoor activity this weekend depending on conditions. When air quality is unhealthy, you should reduce or avoid prolonged or heavy exertion outdoors; strenuous hikes are not recommended.

    You can find current air quality from throughout the park at and get a sense for current visibility via Yosemite Conservancy's webcams at

  • September 15, 2021:

    Starting with next year's backpacking season, Yosemite wilderness permit reservations will be available on in partnership with. While the process of making reservations will change, many parts of the system will be the same or similar, including trailhead quotas, availability of walk-up permits, and reservation windows.
    Find the details at

  • September 13, 2021:

    Yosemite National Park’s story has many chapters. Yes, the granite domes and cliffs, the waterfalls, and the giant sequoias have long been main characters, but the storyline and added props have changed over time.

    Have you ever stood somewhere in awe of the natural beauty around you, only to learn later that the exact same spot once looked quite different? Perhaps you’ve stood in the middle of Yosemite Valley looking up at the sheer granite walls and never thought about the ground beneath your feet as serving a completely different purpose in the past. Maybe it was a hotel, or an elk paddock, a road, or a landing zone for a plane.

    Yosemite: Then and Now takes you on a photographic journey that tells these stories by matching archival photos with photos taken in the same locations today. Familiar places in Yosemite that serve as a touchstone for you may have once looked quite different.

    Enjoy a virtual walk down memory lane!
    #Yosemite #NationalParks #yosethenandnow

  • September 10, 2021:
    Recent testing yielded positive results for small amounts of toxic algae in Tenaya Creek in Yosemite Valley, and toxic algae may exist in other sites in Yosemite Valley. Toxins are concentrated within the algal mats themselves and released episodically into the water when the algae dies or is disturbed.

    What does this mean for me?

    For your safety, do not enter or drink from Tenaya Creek, which flows from above Mirror Lake to where it enters the Merced River near North Pines Campground.
    Filtering and/or boiling the water is not effective against this type of algae.
    Prevent pets from drinking the water and eating or touching algae. In particular, prevent dogs from eating dried algal mats on shore.

    Please report any large algal blooms and/or algae that is particularly bright, bubbly, strange-looking, or appears like a haze in the water.

    Do not disturb algal mats in any way. Wading or swimming can cause toxins to be released into the water.

    If you suspect a site has toxic algae, do not enter the water and do not drink water from the area. While some sites are signed based on testing results, it’s likely that algae exists in other parts of Yosemite Valley. Don’t rely on signage alone.

    Can I still swim in the river? Can I still filter or treat the water for drinking?
    Water that is clear with no visible algae in the area presents a low risk. Even in areas with no visible algae, watch for isolated clumps of algae floating by.

    If you think algae may be in the water:
    • Do not enter the water.
    • Do not drink the water, even if treated.
    • Do not let pets into the water, allow them to drink the water, or eat algae on the shore.

    What are the signs and symptoms of exposure to toxins from algae?
    According to the California Water Quality Monitoring Council, the following signs and symptoms may occur within 48 hours of exposure to a waterbody with a suspected or confirmed algal bloom:
    • Sore throat or congestion;
    • Coughing, wheezing, or difficulty breathing;
    • Red, or itchy skin, or a rash;
    • Skin blisters or hives;
    • Earache or irritated eyes;
    • Diarrhea or vomiting;
    • Agitation;
    • Headache; and/or,
    • Abdominal pain.

    If people show symptoms of cyanotoxin and/or cyanobacteria exposure after contact with water, or with scums or mats of algae, they should receive immediate medical attention. Additional resources are available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and by contacting the California Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222). See the HAB-related Illness Tracking webpage for information on previously reported human illnesses related to HABs in California.

    Is the park monitoring for harmful algal blooms?
    The park continues monitoring for toxic algae and testing for toxins throughout the park. You can learn more about harmful algal blooms at

  • September 4, 2021:
    Visitors to Yosemite Valley last fall were more likely than usual to see a bear during their trip. Acorns dropping from Yosemite Valley’s black oaks were perfectly timed with black bears entering hyperphagia, a period when bears are looking for big calorie boosts (up to 20,000 calories every day or eleven pounds of acorns) as they prepare for winter hibernation. Other fall food sources may have fallen flat, making the acorns in Yosemite Valley a particularly big draw for bears. It was truly a sight to behold! Despite normally being solitary animals, numerous bears could were regularly foraging together in small areas due to the abundant food source. Sows were leading their cubs through their first acorn harvest and even exciting displays of the hierarchy among bears was playing out—with dominant bears (often the large males or defensive sows) chasing the more subordinate bears (often the smaller and younger bears) away from their feast.

    In years like last year when acorns are abundant, the trees attract bears which in turn attracts the attention of thousands of enthralled visitors. While these displays are exciting to witness, the proximity of some of these bear-filled oaks to busy roads, trails, and development can create big hazards for bears. Rangers extensively and creatively managed these areas in order to keep people back and allow these bears to remain wild. Initially, rangers tried scaring the bears away from oaks near trails and roads, only to have them return a few minutes later. The bears quickly made it clear that they weren’t going anywhere as long as the acorn feast remained. These bears triggered massive crowds and huge traffic jams (“bear jams”), which created some chaotic situations. Ultimately, a temporary trail closure gave bears and people a bigger buffer, and rangers spent most of their shifts monitoring the situation, keeping people back, and educating thousands of people about the importance of giving wildlife space as they admired the agile tree climbing eating machines.

    For bears, their natural fear of people is an important instinct that keeps them safe. When a bear becomes habituated, losing its natural fear of people, other behaviors can change and dangerous situations can evolve with people. This is why rangers staffed these areas from late August through November. Rangers also created a fun new display to show people exactly how far they should be from a bear: a fun wooden bear silhouette designed to stand a 50 yards down a trail from a sign with bear information on it. This sign explained what to do if you see a bear, and demonstrated exactly how far visitors should remain from bears in order to help keep them wild. All these efforts, as well as the interest that visitors took to learn and understand their role in protecting wildlife in national parks, helped make a difference in these acorn eating bear’s lives.

    It is up to us to #KeepBearsWild. For more information on Yosemite’s bears and how you can do your part to keep them safe, visit

  • August 16, 2021:
    Over the course of the summer, you assisted us in a search for Yosemite’s first ever B.A.R.K. Ranger Ambassador for a chance to have their photo featured in the Yosemite Guide newspaper and on our website to help others make safe and responsible decisions about bringing pets to the park. The top contenders were selected and you voted for the top applicant.

    Please join us in congratulating Bear from Concord, California, as Yosemite’s B.A.R.K. Ranger Ambassador! Bear was chosen for exemplifying outstanding B.A.R.K. Code behavior while enjoying his favorite national park. Some of his model behavior includes: utmost respect of all wildlife, preparation and understanding of which trails pets are allowed, recreating responsibly with a travel water bowl and leash, and excellent Leave No Trace ethics by always cleaning up after himself.

    Congratulations to Bear! You are setting a high bar for other B.A.R.K. Rangers to follow. Thank you to all B.A.R.K. Rangers who applied for the ambassador role. Through your actions, you are protecting the wild beauty of Yosemite for those who come after you!

    As much as we love our furry family members, national parks are not always the best place for pets. Yosemite is wild! Help keep Yosemite wild by always abiding by the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code on your visit, or leave them at home if this might be difficult. The B.A.R.K. Code stands for: Bag your pet’s waste, Always wear a leash, Respect Wildlife, and Know where you can go. Pets who do not follow the B.A.R.K. Code can damage park resources, disturb wildlife in their natural habitat, participate in unsafe activities, and impact the experience of other visitors.

    Learn more about the B.A.R.K. Ranger program:

  • July 30, 2021:

    HEY BEAR, HI BEAR, GO BEAR!! How and when to scare away a bear in Yosemite

    Here’s the situation: you are hanging out at your campsite or on a picnic area beach in Yosemite, when you hear a branch crack behind you. You turn around to find a bear approaching. What do you do?

    You stand up, face the bear, wave your arms, and yell at the bear. We mean YELL at the bear, as loudly as you possibly can. Be aggressive with your voice and body language. You’re not just making noise; you’re scaring a bear away! You have to mean it for it to work.

    Here are some examples of things you can yell:

    HEY BEAR!!

    GO BEAR!!!


    Or even just: AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH BEAR!!!!!!!!!

    One half-hearted yell may not be enough to scare a bear. So, keep yelling LOUDLY and AGGRESSIVELY until the bear leaves. Yell, clap your hands, wave your arms, hit a stick against a tree, get other people to help you yell! You can even throw small objects like pinecones or small pebbles at the bear to help scare it. (You’re trying to gently hit the bear with the pebble or pinecone—not injure it: Bears don’t like being touched.) Don’t chase the bear; just use your voice to scare it away.

    Do you have time to snap a quick picture? No!

    Do you have time to look around for a pot to bang or a whistle to blow? No! Use your voice! Your voice is your most effective tool to scare a bear away (and you don’t have to go looking for it... unless you’re really scared).

    When a bear is around people, it could be only moments away from getting food, so you need to make it feel unwelcome immediately. Once a bear is eating food, it will be harder to scare away and much more likely to return in search of more food, ultimately getting itself into more trouble. We also want bears to be immediately afraid of people (as they naturally are), rather than assuming most people aren’t scary.

    Bears that consume human food typically have decayed and damaged teeth. But that’s not the only negative consequence: when a bear gets food from people, even just a banana, the bear will change its natural behavior. Bears are extremely food-driven and a bear that gets human food will often become so bold in its attempts at getting human food that it has to be killed to protect people. So, when you see a bear approaching you or in any developed area (e.g., campground, picnic area, trail, parking lot), it is important to scare it away immediately, stopping this cycle, and helping keep the bear wild and alive. Yes, yelling at a bear helps keep it alive.

    What about when you see a bear in a meadow, in the wilderness, or anywhere else away from human development or people—should you scare it? Generally, no. Do you have time to snap a quick picture? Probably, if you are at least 50 yards away from the bear. It can be one of the best Yosemite experiences getting to watch a wild bear do wild bear things.

    Are you having trouble envisioning scaring a bear away? This video shows what it sounds and looks like. This advice applies in Yosemite; always check local recommendations when visiting bear country.

    [Video: A wildlife ranger demonstrating the correct way to yell at a bear. She is hitting a nearby tree with a stick throughout the video.]

  • July 16, 2021:

    Speeding Kills Bear

    We get this call a lot. Too much, to be honest. “Bear hit by vehicle, dead on the side of the road.” Sadly, it’s become routine. I log the coordinates into my phone, gather the equipment I may need, and head to the location. This call came in cold; it sounds like the collision happened sometime around noon and it’s 4 pm now. The location is an hour’s drive away, so by the time I get there it’s well after 5 pm. I pull off on the shoulder, lug a large backpack of equipment over my back, and head off down the road. My job here is easy, really: find the bear, move its body far away from the road to prevent any other animals from getting hit while scavenging on it, fill out a report, and collect samples and measurements for research. Then I’m off on my way again with another number to add to the total of bears hit by vehicles this year—data we hope will help prevent future collisions. Pretty callous. However, the reality behind each of these numbers is not.

    Per the coordinates I was given, I’m still a few hundred yards off, so I continue down the road scanning it for blood as cars whiz by. I try to remember how many times I’ve done this now and, truthfully, I don’t know. This is not what any of us signs up for, but it’s a part of the job nonetheless. Then something catches my eye. It’s small and artificial, and laying in the middle of the road. As I walk closer, I see that it’s a broken shapeless car part, likely from an undercarriage. More cars whiz past. I turn my gaze from the car part down the embankment on the side of the road and there it is.

    A cub. Its tiny light brown body laying just feet from me and the road, nearly invisible to every passerby. It’s a new cub—couldn’t be much more than six months old, now balled up and lifeless under a small pine tree. For a moment I lose track of time as I stand there staring at its tiny body, but then the sound of more cars whizzing by reminds me of my place and my role. I let out a deep sigh and continue on with my task.

    I pick up the cub—it couldn’t be much more than 25 pounds—and begin carrying it off into the woods. I have no certain destination; I’m just walking until I can no longer hear the hiss of the road behind me. I see a grassy spot surrounded by a semi-ring of down logs and gravitate towards it. The least I can do is find it a nice place to be laid. I lay it down in the grass protected by one of the nearby logs and sit back on the log opposite of it, slightly relieved that it looks far more in place now than when I found it earlier. I take another moment and then continue with my work.

    I slide off my backpack, remove a binder, and start the assessment. It’s a female. This immediately triggers thoughts of the life this bear may have lived—perhaps she would have had cubs of her own—but before I finish that thought I hear a stick break and look up. Just beyond the ring, there’s a familiar figure intently staring back at me. It’s another bear. Surprised, I stand up quickly and the bear runs off into the brush but stops not far off and looks back at me. Acting on instinct, I pick up a stick and smash it over a tree to scare the bear further away. I stand there quietly, listening as I hear the bear’s footsteps tapper away.

    A few silent minutes pass, and I settle back into my task. Timely coincidence, I think at first. It could be a bear coming to scavenge or this could be a common crossing area for whatever reason—we did have another bear hit and killed not far from here last week. But then I hear it, and it changes my mind completely. From behind me there’s a deep toned but soft sounding grunt. I immediately know what it is. It’s a vocalization, the kind sows (female bears) make to call to their cubs. I turn and look in its direction and there she is, the same bear from before intently staring back at me. It’s no coincidence. I can feel the callousness drain from my body. This bear is the mom, and she never left her cub.

    My heart sinks. It’s been nearly six hours and she still hasn’t given up on her cub. I can just imagine how many times she darted back and forth on that road in attempts to wake it. It's extremely lucky that she wasn't hit as well. The calls to the cub continue, sounding more pained each time. I glance back finding myself hoping it would respond to her call too, but of course, nothing. Now here I am, standing between a grieving mother and her child. I feel like a monster.

    I get up, quickly pack my bag, and get out of there. It is time to go even though my task is not done. Quickly, I set up a remote camera. Why? Every year we report the number of bears that get hit by vehicles, but numbers don’t always paint a picture. I want people to see what I saw: the sad reality behind each of these numbers.

    So please, remember this. Remember that when traveling through Yosemite, we are all just visitors in the home of countless animals and it is up to us to follow the rules that protect them. Go the speed limit, drive alertly, and look out for wildlife. Protecting Yosemite’s black bears is something we can all do.

    Learn more at

  • July 14, 2021:

    The B.A.R.K. Ranger Code is an easy way to remember how to visit Yosemite responsibly with a pet. B.A.R.K. stands for: Bag your pets waste, Always wear a leash, Respect wildlife, and Know where you can go. Make sure to follow the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code on your next visit or leave your pet at home if this might be difficult for you. For more information visit:

    Back in June, we asked you to submit photos of your own pet and tell us how they follow the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code. The most outstanding candidate selected will be named Yosemite's B.A.R.K. Ranger Ambassador and have their photo featured in our Yosemite Guide and webpage to help others make safe decisions about visiting Yosemite with a pet.

    The results are in and we received well over 100 applicants! The competition was tough but with the help of Yosemite’s park rangers, we narrowed the search to five candidates. We are now asking for your help in crowning the top ambassador! Cast your vote by commenting on this post through July 21 with the applicant number who you feel upholds the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code best. If you plan to visit the park between July 14-21, you can also cast your ballot in person at the Yosemite Valley Visitor Center. Note, only one vote per person virtually or in person. The official ambassador selection will be announced later this summer.

    We want to thank every B.A.R.K. Ranger who took time to apply. You are helping to protect Yosemite for generations to come and we appreciate your exemplary efforts!

    Applicant #1
    Name: Gobi
    Hometown: Oakland, CA
    We love Yosemite and make it a point to visit every year. Last year, we took Gobi for her first visit to Yosemite. We stayed at a hotel close to the entrance and drove in first to Lower Yosemite Falls loop. We made sure to stay on the trail and always use a 6-ft leash. We then walked across Cook's Meadow to the chapel where we witnessed a small wedding party. Lastly, we took some photos on Berg Bridge and the Sentinel bridge over Merced River. We drove over to Mirror Lake and walked until the pavement ended and turned around. Gobi would be so honored to be selected as a B.A.R.K. ranger. She is a playful yet gentle dog who loves nature and all its wonderful smells. We take her along with us where we can and always make sure to do our research ahead of time. Gobi has gone through obedience training and listens to our commands ("leave it" or "heel") which come in handy at national parks. We are already planning our next trip to Glacier Point!

    Applicant #2
    Name: Bear
    Hometown: Concord, CA
    Bear loves to hike & camp. I rescued Bear from a life on a chain in a backyard in Stockton, Ca. A few months later I was in a battle for my life with stage 4 throat cancer. Bear was confused why we couldn't play together but remained by my side til I recovered. Since recovering (1+ year) we have been inseparable. Traveling the state on different hikes, kayaking and camping trips from Yosemite to Caspar Beach. Our favorite place is Yosemite National Park. Bear is extremely well behaved on trails where dogs are allowed and at all campsites (Mt Diablo State Park is where we call home). We always pick up after ourselves and leave no trace. I think Bear’s best asset in public parks is how he respects wildlife. He never attempts to chase after any. I have video of him standing silently as a herd of deer pass by us in Yosemite. We were on a footbridge and they passed just a few feet away and below us. Bear would make a great B.A.R.K. Ranger.

    Applicant #3
    Name: Jack
    As my service dog he’s been with me from the top of Mt. Lassen peak, to the lowest point of Death Valley at Badwater Basin, and accompanied me on countless field trips while I studied geology. His first official BARK ranger badge was from Redwood NP and we’ve been looking forward to the addition of Yosemite. Jack has been to 8 National Parks including multiple trips to Yosemite, at least 5 national monuments, and countless national forests and other parks. We’ve always followed the BARK ranger principles, and now that Jack is retired we stick to the pet friendly trails. Please consider Jack to be a BARK Ranger Ambassador. He is the perfect candidate and deserves all the treats and praises.

    Applicant #4
    Name: Stevie Nicks
    Hometown: Texas
    I practice the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code by always being informed of where I can and cannot go within each National Park that I visit. My mom always has my poo bags with us to ensure we leave no trace behind! I stay on a leash every time I get out of my car and work hard to be an example for other pups. My mom loves to photograph wildlife from her car… especially bears… so I sit very quiet and watch when we come across wildlife from the car. I love watching wildlife intently from the safety of my car. I would be honored to be able to help in educating other pups and their parents in safety and how to enjoy National Parks (especially Yosemite) by being respectful of the rules so nature and wildlife can be protected.

    Applicant #5
    Name: Maya
    Hometown: San Diego, CA
    Maya absolutely loved going to Yosemite with her fur parents this past May! We centered our Yosemite trip around Maya and spent weeks researching how to make it an awesome experience for her. She definitely was a model Bark Ranger! We bagged all her waste, she was leashed 100% of the time (Maya loves her leash, it's a sign it's time for adventure!), Maya loves to watch squirrels but she respected all squirrels and critters with plenty of distance and knew they just wanted to enjoy Yosemite too. No pavement? No thank you! Maya stayed on paved roads and we still got to take lots of cute pictures of her enjoying beautiful Yosemite ❤

  • June 23, 2021:

    Calling all B.A.R.K. Rangers! Starting this summer, your furry family member, along with a little help from a human companion, can become an official B.A.R.K. Ranger by protecting Yosemite and learning the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code. The B.A.R.K. Ranger Code helps you and your pet visit responsibly by doing the following: Bag your pet’s waste, Always leash your pet, Respect Wildlife, and Know where you can go. Learn more about the code and how become a B.A.R.K. Ranger at:

    But we need your help! We are looking for an outstanding B.A.R.K. Ranger Ambassador to help with Yosemite’s educational and safety messaging. The selected ambassador will have their photo featured in the Yosemite Guide and our webpage to help others make informed and safe choices about visiting Yosemite with a pet. To be considered, comment on this post or send an email through Wednesday, June 30 with your pet’s picture, name, and where they are from. Tell us, how does your pet follow the B.A.R.K. Ranger Code and what makes them a good Yosemite B.A.R.K. Ranger? The top B.A.R.K. Ranger Ambassador candidates will be selected by a panel of Yosemite park rangers and the official ambassador will be chosen by the public. Stay tuned for opportunities to vote later this summer!

    And remember if you plan to bring a pet on your next visit to Yosemite, be prepared. If the activities on your itinerary are unsafe or do not allow for pets, consider leaving them at home. They will appreciate it!

  • June 1, 2021:

    Yosemite National Park and the U.S. Forest Service-Stanislaus National Forest announce the release of the interagency Ackerson Meadow Restoration Project Environmental Assessment for public review through July 8, 2021.

    The Ackerson Meadow complex spans from Yosemite into the Stanislaus National Forest and is the largest mid-elevation meadow in Yosemite. The meadow is important to a number of at-risk wildlife species including the State endangered great grey owl and little willow flycatcher. Currently, a large erosion gully network, up to 14 feet deep and 100 feet wide, is actively draining 90 acres of former wetlands in the meadow complex and threatening an additional 100 acres of wet meadow habitat. The gully network is a result of over a century of landscape manipulation including domestic water diversion, farming, ranching, and timber harvest. Yosemite and the Stanislaus National Forest jointly propose to reduce erosion and restore wetland functionality in the Ackerson Meadow complex.

    Read through the environmental assessment and the alternatives proposed and submit comments through July 8, 2021:

  • May 26, 2021:

    Great news! With Mariposa County moving to the Yellow Tier in California's Blueprint for a Safer Economy, we will be releasing an additional 400 to 500 day-use reservations per day.

    These additional reservations for arrivals from May 28 through June 2 will become available tomorrow (Thursday, May 27) at 8 am PDT.

    Additional reservations for arrivals from June 3 through September 30 will become available seven days in advance at 8 am PDT. You can make a reservation at

    A reservation is required to drive into Yosemite through September 30. Learn more about the different kinds of reservations at Tioga Road (the continuation of Highway 120 through the park) opens for the season tomorrow.

    Even with the reservation system in place, we expect a relatively busy Memorial Day weekend. Avoid delays by arriving by mid-morning. Please #RecreateResponsibly!

  • May 14, 2021:

    The Half Dome cables will be up for the season on Wednesday, May 19, 2021! A permit is required to summit Half Dome. Most permits are available via preseason lottery, but a limited number are available every day, two days in advance. Additionally, all permits for May 19–May 27 will become available two days in advance. See for details.

    If you will be hiking to Half Dome, be prepared with several liters of water, good hiking boots, and a headlamp (with extra batteries). Be prepared to turn around if a thunderstorm appears possible. Stay back from the Merced River, which is running high right now. If you see a bear on the trail or approaching you, scare it away by yelling loudly, aggressively, and persistently. Always keep your food within arm's reach. Oh, and have fun!

  • May 13, 2021:

    Camp 4 will open on Friday, May 21, 2021! Reservations are required (no first-come, first-served) and available by lottery one day in advance at least through September 30. Campers can apply for the lottery between midnight and 4 pm PDT the day before their planned arrival at The first lottery application period will occur on May 20 (for May 21 arrivals).

    This year, only one group will be allowed per campsite. Applications can be for up to six people. The application fee is $10 per application. If successful, the applicant will be charged $6 per person per night.

    Visit for more information.

  • May 7, 2021: Yosemite National Park to Implement a Pilot Overnight Climbing Permit System Beginning on Friday, May 21, 2021

    All visitors planning to overnight on any rock climbing routes in Yosemite National Park will be required to obtain an overnight wilderness climbing permit beginning on May 21, 2021. This pilot program is being implemented to better understand how park visitors use Yosemite’s big walls and to help improve climbing wilderness ethics and reduce negative human impacts associated with overnight big wall use.

    Overnight climbing permits will be available beginning at 8 a.m. on May 14, 2021. For the duration of the pilot program, these permits will be free.

    For more detailed information, visit

    This program will be a 2-year pilot.  

  • April 30, 2021: Day-use reservations for Sundays–Wednesdays in June, and every day in July, are still available! Reservations for August become available on Wednesday, May 5, at 8 am. Visit to make a reservation.

    In case you missed it, beginning Friday, May 21, visitors to Yosemite National Park will need a day-use reservation to enter the park. The temporary day-use reservation system will allow the park to manage visitation levels to reduce risks associated with exposure to COVID-19.

    Day-use reservations will be required for all users, including annual and lifetime pass holders. Each reservation is valid for 3 days. Each day-use reservation is valid for one vehicle and the occupants of that vehicle.

    Day-use reservations are included for all visitors staying overnight in the park. This includes reservations for The Ahwahnee, Yosemite Valley Lodge, Curry Village, Wawona Hotel, Housekeeping Camp, and NPS-managed campgrounds. Day-use reservations are also included for all visitors with wilderness and Half Dome permits and visitors entering the park via YARTS buses and on permitted commercial tours.

    For more detailed information, please visit

  • April 27, 2021: Planning a backpacking trip this year? Reservations are required this year for all wilderness permits.

    Beginning Friday, April 30, wilderness permits will not be available in the park. Normally, 40% of wilderness permits are available on a first-come, first-served basis at park wilderness centers. This year, these will be available by lottery two weeks in advance. You can apply 15 days in advance of your desired start date, with the lottery running 14 days in advance. Remaining reservations are available until four days before your wilderness trip.

    Visit for details.

  • April 23, 2021: It's a nice spring day today, but change is on the way! A winter storm warning is in effect early Sunday morning through Monday morning, with several inches of snow possible.

    If you'll be visiting Sunday or Monday, be prepared for snowy conditions. Tire chains may be required ( Call 209/372-0200 (then 1, 1) to check on road conditions.

    If you're planning a hike on Sunday or Monday, reconsider your plans and be prepared for freezing, wet, and slick conditions. A little snow can make a trail completely disappear, so have a map & compass and know how to use them, even if you have GPS.

    If you're not visiting, you can keep up on changing conditions by viewing Yosemite Conservancy's webcams at

  • April 15, 2021: Hard to believe it is already time to say goodbye to our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers as they migrate to their summer destination! Their last week brought spring snowflakes to the high country along with numerous signs of wildlife welcoming the change in seasons. Many spring migrant birds have returned and are singing their mating songs. The coyotes are howling in the meadows during the morning hours. And, bear tracks have been seen north of Tuolumne Meadows. Check out their final post of the season:

  • April 14, 2021: Yosemite National Park announces that on Thursday, April 15, 2021, at 7:00 am PDT, campsites throughout the park will go on sale via The following campgrounds will be available for reservation arrival dates between August 15 and September 14, 2021:

    • Upper Pines

    • Lower Pines

    • North Pines

    • Bridalveil Creek (July 15–September 5)

    • Wawona

    • Tuolumne Meadows

Not all sites in every campground will be released due to the ongoing pandemic and resulting social distancing precautions. Please go to to see a list of closed sites in each campground.

Due to ongoing construction, Wawona campground will only be open to self-contained RVs and trailers (i.e., those with on-board toilet and wastewater systems). Construction on the wastewater system is ongoing. Restrooms and drinking water are not available.

Bridalveil Creek Campground will be available by reservation only via

Due to construction delays at Camp 4, the campground is slated to open in mid– to late May 2021. Please check the park's website at and social media pages for updates.

Sites held for flooding in Lower and North Pines will not be released yet. Please check and the park's website at for updates.

  • April 8, 2021: Beginning Friday, May 21, visitors to Yosemite National Park will need a day-use reservation to enter the park. The temporary day-use reservation system will allow the park to manage visitation levels to reduce risks associated with exposure to COVID-19.

Day-use reservations will be required for all users, including annual and lifetime pass holders. Each reservation is valid for 3 days.

Day-use reservations are included for all visitors staying overnight in the park. This includes reservations for The Ahwahnee, Yosemite Valley Lodge, Curry Village, Wawona Hotel, Housekeeping Camp, and NPS-managed campgrounds. Day-use reservations are also included for all visitors with wilderness and Half Dome permits and visitors entering the park via YARTS buses and on permitted commercial tours.

Reservations are available on beginning at 8 am on April 21, 2021. Each day-use reservation is valid for one vehicle and the occupants of that vehicle.

For more detailed information, please visit:

  • April 7, 2021: After a warm and dry week in Yosemite’s high county, our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers are starting to see more bare ground each day. The sound of wind has been replaced by the sound of running water as the Tuolumne River opens quickly and snow depths shrink. Despite the 33 inches of snow still measured at their weather plot, some sunny, south aspects below 9,000 feet are snow free. Don’t be fooled however, as the Tioga Road between Tuolumne Meadows and Crane Flat is still covered in snow; four feet deep in some places! It may feel like spring where you live, but in much of Yosemite’s higher elevations, winter is still evident. Check out this week’s full blog entry:

  • April 1, 2021: If the snow conditions weren't enough, a new visitor to the high country let's Tuolumne rangers know it is fully spring. This week's Tuolumne Ranger blog is up

  • March 31, 2021: In 1983 Althea Roberson became the first Black woman ranger at Yosemite National Park. In 1988 for Black History Month she was interviewed about her experience for the Courier: News Magazine of the National Park Service.

  • March 29, 2021: Protect people, parks, and our shared heritage. As a federal law enforcement officer, you are responsible for protecting precious natural, cultural, and historical resources, as well as keeping the public safe. You may also perform emergency medical services, search and rescue, and wildland or structural firefighting.

    The National Park Service is seeking 24 outstanding individuals to participate in a 2021 law enforcement hiring initiative. Selected candidates will be matched with participating parks (including Yosemite) and attend the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC) in August 2021. Prior Park Ranger Law Enforcement Academy (PRLEA, AKA “Seasonal Academy”) attendance is not required. Positions are now open on

  • March 25, 2021: For those of us at lower elevations it sure might seem that we’re well on our way into spring. However, our rangers in Tuolumne Meadows saw plenty of new snow and winter conditions this week. This will be good news for our snowpack even though it is still trending well below average. We’ll have a clearer picture on the snow water situation after they go out for the benchmark surveys in the coming week.Learn more and hear about one of their lovely wild neighbors.

  • March 17, 2021: It was a wintry week in the mountains with snow in the high country as well as the lower elevations. Check out this week’s update from our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers to learn more about the mixed ski conditions in that area. Categorized as “mid-winter” like conditions, there are layers of powder, a firm melt-freeze crust, and some wet snow mixed in. Enjoy a quick lesson on trees in the high country as well, during a season when it’s much easier to see the forest for the trees against a backdrop of newly fallen snow.

  • March 12, 2021: For additional campground information, please visit For more information on Camp 4, please visit

  • March 9, 2021: The National Park Service wants to hear from you! Help us make your virtual visit as good as the real thing. Share your feedback on our Instagram page by taking a quick survey at . (OMB Control No. 1024-0224).

  • March 8, 2021: Read more about some of the women who’ve made history in this gallery exhibit, Yosemite Women, made possible through the generous funding and support of Yosemite Conservancy:

  • March 4, 2021: Although still technically winter, our Tuolumne Meadows rangers have been noticing a hint of spring in the air in the central Sierra. The monthly snow surveys were completed this week for the park and the results show the Tuolumne River Basin at 56% of the April 1 average (65% of the March 1 average). Read more about their week and the winter conditions in the high country:

  • March 2, 2021: The National Park Service wants to hear from you! Help us make your virtual visit as good as the real thing. Share your feedback on our Instagram page by taking a quick survey at . (OMB Control No. 1024-0224):

  • February 25, 2021: For our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers, wind and sun pretty much sums up the ski conditions and weather for the week, and this winter season so far. They’ve been out conducting the monthly snow surveys, encountering a range of snow conditions and a startled sooty grouse who was enjoying the view from its perch. Check out their blog post for the week:

  • February 23, 2021: The National Park Service wants to hear from you! Help us make your virtual visit as good as the real thing. Share your feedback on our Instagram page by taking a quick survey at . (OMB Control No. 1024-0224):

  • February 16, 2021: The National Park Service wants to hear from you! Help us make your virtual visit as good as the real thing. Share your feedback on our Instagram page by taking a quick survey at . (OMB Control No. 1024-0224):

  • February 10, 2021:

    Have you ever wondered how geologists address rockfalls in Yosemite National Park?

    Almost exactly eight years ago, in 2014, a rockfall fell from Glacier Point in the early morning hours of February 11, sending boulders towards Curry Village. One boulder landed squarely within the footprint of a visitor cabin. Had this cabin actually been there it would have been seriously damaged or even destroyed by the impact; if occupied, there likely would have been injuries and/or fatalities.

    Instead, there were no consequences to this rockfall because this cabin was one of many that were moved in 2013, based on a study of rockfall hazard and risk in Yosemite Valley. Using tools such as laser mapping of cliffs, exposure dating of boulders, and three-dimensional rockfall modeling, scientists mapped rockfall zones throughout the Valley. Moving high-risk buildings to locations outside of hazardous areas is one way the National Park Service has increased safety. Park rangers have also developed emergency plans and may close trails or post warnings signs in areas where rockfall hazard is elevated.

  • February 5, 2021: Shhhh...snowflake by snowflake, last week's winter storms laid a fresh blanket across a landscape deep in slumber. ❄️

    Winter provides a crucial chance for Yosemite to recharge and reset, keeping ecosystems in balance while building resilience to summer stressors like drought. But in recent years this restorative sleep has been cut short by rising temperatures, leading to changes that echo through the park's watersheds, wildfires, and living communities—including humans. What are the long-term consequences of environmental "sleep deprivation"? Explore the patterns at

  • January 13, 2021: Despite the lack of new snow, our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers were able to find good ski touring conditions in order to patrol Yosemite’s high country: Check out this week’s highlights:

  • January 4, 2021: Our Tuolumne Meadows winter rangers are back for their 10th season in the high country! As usual, they give us a weekly snapshot of current snow and avalanche conditions, wildlife activity and any other happenings above 8,000 feet. They have been enjoying the settled snow from recent weather systems in the area, with around two feet of snow in Tuolumne Meadows and another foot at higher elevations (likely more after today). Check out their first blog post of the season:

  • December 13, 2020: Any visit to the high Sierra might have the peace pierced with the raucous kraak kraak kraak of a Clark’s nutcracker. These gray and black jays are members of the corvid family of birds, joined by crows and ravens. Nutcrackers are aptly named for their specialized beak capable of breaking open the toughest of cones, that of the Whitebark pine tree found only in the subalpine zones of western mountain ranges. Clark’s nutcrackers become inadvertent farmers of their favorite food source by storing hundreds of pine nuts, sometimes miles away from the source tree. Some nuts are never eaten and eventually turn into mature trees producing more cones.

    Whitebark pine are a tree of importance for the subalpine zone by producing nutrient rich nuts, holding back snowmelt in the spring, and are an early succession plant after a fire. These trees are being monitored closely in the western mountains because many stands are dying back due to a native beetle and an introduced fungus.

    You can read more about the relationship between Clark’s nutcrackers and Whitebark pine at

  • December 8, 2020: We generally imagine that part of visiting wild places is for peace and quiet. However the various natural sounds of a protected landscape like Yosemite are perhaps more soothing to our nerves than a pure soundlessness. Enjoy this virtual visit to the soundscapes of Yosemite and think about what sounds you feel are worth protecting: Yosemite Nature Notes: Soundscapes

  • October 16, 2020: Learn how you can prepare for flooding:

  • October 12, 2020: In 2020, we are celebrating 50 years of the National Park Service’s prescribed fire program in Yosemite.

  • September 30, 2020: Have you ever visited the Yosemite Museum? If so, it’s likely that you’ve enjoyed seeing the beautiful baskets on display from our collection. Big and small, utilitarian in their purpose, or souvenirs for early tourists, baskets encompassed the artistry, creativity and skill the first women in Yosemite possessed.Baskets served many purposes in the lives and culture of Yosemite’s first peoples. They were used to carry goods, harvest seeds, sift grain, cook meals, and store belongings. They were used as game mats, bowls, jugs, racquets, pots, cradles, and eventually, as a source of income. Like many other traditions, basket weaving is an art that is still practiced today with techniques passing down from one generation to the next.Thanks to the support of the Yosemite Conservancy you can enjoy a virtual exhibit which focuses on Yosemite basketry. Learn more about Yosemite’s basket weavers, the materials used to make their baskets, and the distinctions of designs and colors:

  • September 23, 2020: With improved air quality conditions, Yosemite will reopen on Friday, September 25, 2020 at 9:00 am. Some visitor services will be available and other visitor services will open incrementally over the weekend. Campsites in Yosemite Valley will be available for incoming campers beginning on Friday, September 25, 2020. To book a campsite, please visit We will continue to confer with local and federal public health experts on air quality, smoke impacts, and resulting impacts on public health.

  • September 17, 2020: Yosemite will close to all visitors and vehicle access at 5 pm tonight (Wednesday, September 17) due to significant smoke impacts and hazardous air quality throughout the park. Based on the air quality forecast, we anticipate this closure to be in effect at least through the weekend. We will continue to evaluate smoke, air quality, and fire activity throughout the region.

  • September 13, 2020: Smoke from the Creek Fire and other wildfires continue to affect air quality in Yosemite National Park. The Creek Fire is currently at 201,908 acres and is 8% contained. Air quality can vary considerably from day to day and in different areas of the park. The air quality index for Yosemite today was “unhealthy” to “hazardous,” and forecast to remain that way tomorrow. When air quality is hazardous, you should avoid any outdoor activity.

  • September 11, 2020: Run-ins with rattlesnakes result in rescues!

A few weeks ago, within the span of three days, two rattlesnake bites—and subsequent rescues—occurred in Yosemite’s wilderness. Read these stories and more on the Yosemite Search and Rescue blog at

  • September 9, 2020

  • September 7, 2020

  • September 6, 2020: For information on the Creek Fire:

  • August 31, 2020: Recent lightning storms across California have us reminiscing about lucky encounters with lightning at Yosemite. Read these survival stories, and learn lightning safety tips, in the Search and Rescue: Lessons from the Field blog at

  • August 28, 2020: Reservation reminder. On September 1 at 7 am Pacific daylight time, the first 80% of day-use reservations for October will become available. The remaining 20% of reservations for each day continue to become available 2 days in advance of the date at 7 am PDT. Reservations can sell out within seconds so make sure you’re logged in to your account and ready to go before 7 am PDT.

    Other tips:
    - Enlist others in your group to go online as well to try to secure the reservation.
    - Be flexible on dates, weekends sell out faster than weekdays.
    Create a backup plan! YARTS is operating and can bring you to Yosemite. - - Reservations are not required but recommended. Visit for schedules and bookings.
    - Read all of the “Need to Know” information on to select the right options for your visit.

    Reservation information (English):
    Información de las reservaciones (Español):
    Reservation overview video (English/subtitulos en Español): video (English):
    Video de (Español):

  • August 26, 2020: Today, on Women’s Equality Day, let the courageous, passionate, and revolutionary women of Yosemite inspire you to reach new heights. Ratified on August 18, 1920 but not certified until August 26, 1920, the 19th Amendment gave women the right to vote. Thank you to all leaders, activists and everyday people that fought, and still fight, for gender equality. Visit for more information and to visit our virtual Yosemite Women exhibit.

  • August 25, 2020: Meet Yosemite Superintendent Cicely Muldoon on September 17 as she joins Dr. Nooshin Razani of UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals for a virtual NatureBridge Campfire Chat! Together, they’ll explore the incredible health benefits of being outside, access to nature as a health equity issue and the power of Yosemite National Park in inspiring lifelong relationships with the outdoors. Learn more at and register for this free event today.

  • August 24, 2020: On Tuesday, August 25 at 5pm PDT, Yosemite's own Ranger Shelton Johnson will be speaking on a panel hosted by the Joy Trip Project on the under-representation of Black Americans in park visitation. On June 9, Deputy Director David Vela released a statement regarding race, equity, and the values of the National Park Service, with a particular focus on racial injustices “within the black community."

  • August 22, 2020: Join us for our last day of the Parsons Memorial Lodge Summer 2020 Series Virtual Celebration! “We walk through [a story] as we walk through a forest.” Join storyteller, poet, and former Park Ranger Jay Leeming for a journey through the wild landscape of stories, to the place where the past and future meet in a moment of delight and possibility.

Jay Leeming is a performance storyteller who has spent years telling stories in classrooms and libraries, to audiences of all ages in theaters and National Parks. Born in Ithaca, New York, Jay has acted as a poet in residence and worked as a Park Ranger naturalist in Yosemite National Park. The creator of the Crane Bag Storytelling Podcast, he has authored two books of poetry and is the recipient of a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. Jay lives in Ithaca currently with his brilliant family. All videos from this series will be posted at

Air quality in Yosemite Valley is currently moderate, meaning unusually sensitive people should consider reducing prolonged or heavy exertion outdoors. Air quality may worsen; you can track air quality near Yosemite Valley at

Last updated: March 19, 2023

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