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Yosemite Adventure Journal | 5:09

Your source for weekly news, information and updates in the Yosemite National Park region and beyond.

Yosemite Bear Facts


Reservations will be required for dates in green between 5 am to 4 pm. For full day or half day reservations visit

2024 Schedule of Yosemite National Park Entrance Reservations
Yosemite Reservation Schedule

You do not need reservations if:

  •  you are entering on one of our guided tours

  •  you have a Half Dome or wilderness permit

  • you have lodging or camping reservations inside of Yosemite National Park

  • you are entering on YARTS

  • you are on foot, bike or horse


Road Closures & Detours

Tioga Road

Tioga Road and the Highway 120 entering the Park from Lee Vining and Mammoth Lakes, CA is still closed for the season. The park's roads crew has plowed 24 miles from the Crane Flat Gate and is currently working east of Porcupine Flat Campground.

Big Oak Flat Road

Big Oak Flat Road & Highway 120 entering the Park from Groveland, CA has no construction or impediments.

Simple Yosemite Road Map
Yosemite Map

Wawona Road

Wawona Road & Highway 41 entering the Park from Oakhurst, CA are clear this weekend; however, beginning May 2nd and continuing through the 17th crews will be completing weekday repairs along the Wawona Road.  May 2nd and 3rd crews will be cleaning up a road repair from last year located approximately 12-miles north of the southern Park Boundary or a couple miles north of the Mosquito Creek drainage. Beginning on Monday, May 6th and continuing thru Friday, May 17th crews will begin an emergency road repair approximately 9.4 miles north of the southern Park Boundary, or just below the Mosquito Creek Drainage.  Crews will be working Monday thru Friday 7AM to 6PM.  There will be flaggers with alternating single lane traffic control with 15-minute delays. Note that although crews will not be working at night, there will be single lane traffic control with lights and traffic signals.

May 7th -19th crews will be completing an emergency road repair approx. 9.4 miles north of the southern Park Boundary or just below the Mosquito Creek Drainage.  There will be alternating single lane traffic control with 15-minute delays, while crews complete this road repair.  There are multiple tight curves along Wawona Road in this area, so please slow down, be patient and use caution when approaching this area.

El Portal Road

El Portal Road and Highway 140 entering the Park from Mariposa, CA are not closed, but may experience delays.

Arch Rock Entrance Bypass Project:

If you travel along the El Portal Road (Hwy 140) between Yosemite Valley and El Portal you may have noticed traffic cones and barricades being staged along the side of the road. This week we will be setting-up the Arch Rock Bypass in time for the approaching busy weekend.

This summer we will be piloting the Arch Rock Bypass on the El Portal Road (Hwy 140). The bypass is essentially a temporary traffic control operation that will allow authorized vehicles to travel up the outbound lane and "bypass" the line at the entrance station. This will be set up like a construction zone with signs warning travelers about a flagger / detour ahead, uniformed staff will be stationed at both ends of the bypass. The half-mile bypass will start at Little Windy Point on the west side and extend up El Portal Road to the east side of the Arch Rock Entrance. This will allow authorized vehicles to bypass up to 80 vehicles waiting at the entrance station.  

If you travel El Portal Road, you may be able to use the bypass. We hope to operate the bypass every day a reservation is required, typically during morning commuting hours until mid-day, depending on length of the line at the entrance station and availability of staff.  

What vehicles are authorized vehicles? Government vehicles with I or G plates, Privately owned vehicles with an employee or resident sticker, or Vehicles with an admin pass (e.g., contractors, vendors, Tribal members)  

Travelers leaving the park on El Portal Road in the morning should expect up to a 10-minute delay when the bypass is operating. The bypass will stop mid-day, before most vehicles are leaving the park. As always, please slow down as you approach Arch Rock Entrance.

State Route 140 (SR-140) between Cathey’s Valley and the town of Mariposa will undergo improvements throughout the summer. Work will include pavement preservation with hot-mix asphalt, and removal and installation of guardrails, culverts, dikes, shoulder backing, signage, and corner curb ramps at seven intersections. Crews will work night shifts for approximately 170 working days, Sunday through Thursday, with alternating lane closures on eastbound and westbound SR-140. Project completion is expected in December 2024.

Glacier Point Road

The road leading up to Glacier Point is still closed for the season.

Glacier Point Road opens to vehicles on Tuesday, May 14, at 8 am. The road will open to bicycles only starting Friday, May 10. Cyclists should watch for park vehicles working on the road.

The Badger Pass cutoff road is also closed.

Mariposa Grove Road

The road leading into the Mariposa Grove is free of delays. Road is currently closed for the winter. When open, road is open only to vehicles displaying disability placards. All others must use the free shuttle from the Mariposa Grove Welcome Plaza which operates approximately late May through November.

Yosemite Valley Roads

All roads within Yosemite Valley are subject to heavy traffic during the season.

Hazardous fuel reduction is taking place from Bridalveil Fall to Tunnel View. Holds are 15 minutes while workers remove woody material. Actual wait times may be longer as traffic clears through one lane at a time. Delays should be expected Mon-Fri, 06:00-16:00. This work is being conducted in preparation of prescribed fire and provide a safer place for fire fighters to work if a wildfire burns up the Merced River Canyon like the 2018 Ferguson Fire. Personnel will be removing small trees and dead and down material and to help restore a sense of arrival to Yosemite Valley. Wood will be transported to Ackerson Meadow where it will be mixed with fill as part of a massive gully restoration project will the aim of restoring one of the largest mid-elevation meadows in the Sierra Nevada. Mixing the wood with the soil sequesters the carbon and increases the water holding capacity of the soil. Please watch for workers.

Current issues with the Yosemite Valley Shuttle include intermittent closures at service stops 14, 15, 18, and 19. Stops 16, and 17 are the next closest stops that will remain available. Specifically, on Monday, May 6, an NPS contractor will demolish and remove asphalt in the Happy Isles Loop roadway at Bus Stop #15, requiring a temporary road closure. The road to Upper, North, and Lower Pines campgrounds will remain open. Visitor vehicles will be directed to use the loop road to approach Trailhead Parking Area from the east. For the duration of construction, eastbound shuttle runs will terminate at Curry Village registration before returning westbound. With apologies for the inconveniences, visitor will have to walk or use bicycles to access the Mist Trail, John Muir Trail, and Mirror Lake trailheads. Construction should be completed by May 24, but progress will be delayed by rainy weather or other interruptions.

Snow Plow in high snow on Tioga Road
Snow Plow on Tioga Road


Recreational Conditions

John Muir Trail

At 11:23 pm on April 15, a large rockfall occurred from the slope above the John Muir Trail between Clark Point and the top of Nevada Fall, sending hundreds of boulders onto the trail. Nearly 1,000 feet of trail are covered with boulders, trees, and other debris. The trail will require significant repair, including drilling and blasting of large boulders. Geologists are now assessing the potential for additional rockfalls. The trail, which was already closed for the winter season, will remain closed for at least several more weeks. A reopening date is not known at this time. Gates are closed across the John Muir Trail at Clark Point and near the top of Nevada Fall. For your safety, please do not enter the closed section of the trail.

Merced River Closure

Effective Monday April 22nd, the Merced River between Clark's Bridge to El Capitan Bridge will be closed to boating (non-motorized vessels) due to flows above 7.0 feet at the Pohono Bridge river gauge. Continued assessments will be completed throughout the week.

Crane Flat Snow Play Area

The Crane Flat Snow Play Area has closed for the season.

Valley Loop Trail

A short section of the Valley Loop Trail at The Ahwahnee is closed due to rockfall risk, although a short detour is available.

Four Mile Trail

The Four Mile Trail is closed due to hazardous conditions near Union Point (about halfway up) with no access to Glacier Point.

Half Dome

The Half Dome cables are down for the season. They are usually available for use starting Memorial Day weekend in May.

Peregrin Falcon Climbing Closures

The peregrine falcon is a fully protected species in California and a special status species in Yosemite due to its sensitivity to disturbance during the nesting season. To protect this species, the superintendent of Yosemite National Park designates peregrine nesting cliffs as areas closed to visitor use, including climbing and slacklining activities, until peregrine chicks have fledged and dispersed from those areas each year. If you encounter any raptor (falcons, eagles, hawks, etc.) while climbing, please email us.

By order of the superintendent of Yosemite National Park and under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 1.5(a) and Section (a)(1): The following areas are closed to visitor use, including climbing activities, beginning March 1, 2024 and remaining in effect until July 15, 2024, or until further notice:

  • B.O.L.T. Wall – Immediately southwest of Leaning Tower. Closure includes all routes on the B.O.L.T. Wall.

  • El Capitan, SW Face – Closure includes all routes between and including “Octopussy” to the “Dihedral Wall" are closed. The first 9 pitches of the closed routes remain open.

  • Fairview Dome, West Face – Tuolumne Meadows. Closure includes all routes between and including “Heart of Stone” to “Lucky Streaks.” All other routes remain open.

  • Higher Cathedral Rock – Closure includes all routes between and including “Power Point” and “The North Face.” All other routes remain open.

  • Mt. Broderick – West of Liberty Cap. Closure includes the entire SE face of Mt. Broderick opposite Liberty Cap.

  • The Rostrum  Lower Merced Canyon. Closure includes climbing routes on all sides of the Rostrum formation. "Super Nova" and the "Jungle Gym" areas remain open. Slack-lining is prohibited at the summit and the top of the adjacent cliff.

  • Upper Yosemite Fall – Closure includes all routes between and including “Sprayfest” to “Via Aqua."

  • Wawona Dome – Closure includes all routes between and including “Cream of the Crop” to “Bark at the Moon.” From the base, the first pitch of the closed routes between and including “Lunar Eclipse” to “Bird in Flight” remain open.

  • Widow’s Tears – Closure includes all routes within the Widow’s Tears Alcove. Routes on Tower of Cosmic Winds remain open.

  • Yosemite Point – Closure includes all routes between and including “Czech Route” and “Yosemite Point Buttress.” The first 3 pitches of “Czech Route” and the first 5 pitches of “Yosemite Point Buttress” remain open.

Additional Climbing Closures

Rock climbers recently reported a new crack in a cliff on the western side of Royal Arches, near the climbing route Super Slide. Subsequent investigation revealed that this crack has partially detached a large pillar of rock, and that cracking was actively occurring. As a precautionary effort to reduce risk from rockfall, the National Park Service is implementing a temporary area and trail closure starting August 30, 2023:

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

Echo Adventure Cooperative Member Rock Climbing in Yosemite
Free Climbing in Yosemite


Yosemite Bear Facts

April 14– April 27, 2024

2024 Total Bear Incidents: 0

2024 Total Property Damage: $0

Bear Incident Comparisons (year to date—previous years compared to 2024):

Last year (2023) -  down by 100%

Most Incidents (1998) - down by 100%

Fewest Incidents (2019) - down by 100%

Bear Activity Summary: Four male bears have been active in Yosemite Valley. Green 23, Yellow 20, and White 42 are GPS collared bears who have been causing bear jams in the Valley due to roadside forage. These bears are primarily grubbing in downed logs and grazing on shoots and grasses. Another untagged large male black-colored bear has been seen along riverbanks in the Valley frequently. Purple 1, a female bear who spends time in El Portal, has been active for over a month both in and out of town. Two other GPS collared females are still in or very near their winter den sites.

As bears emerge from hibernation, they will take advantage of any food they find. Cubs of the year and yearlings are especially vulnerable to learning negative behaviors as they encounter humans and human food sources. It is extremely important to keep unoccupied buildings secured (all windows and doors latched or locked), keep all food stored in bear lockers when camping, keep your vehicles clean of all food, drinks, and other attractants like toiletries or gum, only use bear proof dumpsters and trash cans to throw away your food waste, and keep your backpacks and food with you (within arm’s-reach) while out enjoying the park.

Red Bear, Dead Bear: Please help protect wildlife by obeying speed limits and being prepared to stop for animals in roadways. One yearling female was hit and killed by a car this past week. A gray fox was also hit and killed by a vehicle on the Big Oak Falt road near Foresta.

Fascinating Bear Facts: Bears break logs apart while searching for grubs (larvae of wood-boring beetles). This process not only feeds the bear, but supports the decomposition process and soil re-nutrition cycle.

Other Wildlife: Spring is here! Help protect baby wildlife by leashing pets and by keeping your distance. Please leave baby animals where you see them. Deer leave their fawns to go forage and return to them throughout the day. Fledgling birds may be on the ground under a nest as they learn how to fly. These behaviors are normal, and humans trying to help usually cause more harm than good.

Please report bear incidents and sightings:

Call the Yosemite Save-A-Bear Hotline at 209-372-0322 or e-mail

For more information about Yosemite’s Bears, please visit:


Tuolumne River Flow Rates

Below are planned releases from HHWP facilities through May 16th. For permitting and access information contact the Groveland Ranger District. Although Hetch Hetchy Water and Power strive to keep the user community updated on projected flows on the Tuolumne River, flows will continue to vary significantly over the coming weeks as weather changes and spring runoff season begins.


Stated flow rates are best estimates and are subject to change as conditions and operational constraints evolve.


Hetch Hetchy Reservoir

  • Total flows immediately below Hetch Hetchy are currently 1,630 cfs.

  • Flow increases are scheduled to begin next week. Tentative schedule below (subject to change):

  • May 13: 2,500 cfs

  • May 14: 3,500 cfs

  • May 15: 5,000 cfs

  • May 16: 4,100 cfs

  • HHWP will provide notice early next week if changes are expected

  • Kirkwood Powerhouse

    • Spill of approximately 700 cfs around the clock Monday-Friday

    • WEEKENDS: spill will reduce to 0 cfs from 07:00-19:00, 700 cfs otherwise


Cherry Reservoir

  • Total flows immediately below Cherry are approximately 330 cfs

  • Flow increases may be required to manage reservoir storage

  • Notices to be provided as needed

  • Holm Powerhouse

  • Spill of approximately 1,000 cfs around the clock Monday-Friday

  • WEEKENDS: spill will reduce to 0 cfs from 09:00-17:00, 1,000 cfs otherwise


Lake Eleanor

  • Run-of-river operation with full storage

  • Valve releases of approximately 630 cfs

  • Spill is expected to range from 0 to 800 cfs


Meral’s Pool

  • Flows are currently approximately 5,000 cfs

  • Flows will be in an estimated range between 4,000-6,000 cfs this weekend

  • Flows are tentatively estimated to increase to a range between 7,000-9,500+ cfs toward the middle of next week

Echo Adventure Cooperative Member fly fishing on the Tuolumne River
Fly Fishing in the Tuolumne River Backpacking Trip


Nature in the News

Chronic Wasting Disease Confirmed in California Deer Population

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) has been detected for the first time in California’s deer and elk. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) received confirmation on May 6 samples collected from two deer, one in Madera County near Yosemite Lakes and the other in Inyo County, near Bishop. The deer in Madera County was found dead due to unknown causes and the Inyo County deer was found dead after a vehicle collision.  

CWD is a fatal neurologic disease in cervid animals such as deer, elk, moose and reindeer that has been detected in free-ranging cervids from 34 states, including California, and five Canadian provinces as well as Scandinavia. It affects the brain, causing progressive damage and eventually, death. There is no effective treatment or vaccine to combat this disease. Read More...

Being beavers

In a meadow, the squish of mud and splash of a slightly flooded landscape are signs of health. Meadows abound in natural resources and cultural benefits. But within the forests of the Sierra Nevada mountains of California, meadows are in need of help. Fortunately, some eager beaver hands are up to the task. 

Put on your waders, wellies and the perspective of a beaver to learn all about meadows: their ecology, the causes of their deterioration and how they are being restored. There is a lot to learn. So, we visit two national forests and talk to land managers, researchers, Tribal members and restoration specialists. Read more..


Yosemite and Gateway Communities in the News


Report: Aramark subsidiary's negligence led to injuries at historic Yosemite hotels

The Union Democrat

... Groveland, which is now accepting guest reservations that begin May 8. ... Firefall Ranch is a destination that will have easy access to Groveland and ...


"Star Trek V: The Final Frontier" filmed in Yosemite in October 1988. Courtesy of Jay Mather via NPS. In the movie, the park plays host to what Robert ...

Sierra News Online

Moonlight Special at Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad Come experience this special Wednesday evening train ride that includes dinner and live ...

KSEE24 and CBS47

Visit Yosemite Madera County joined the show to help clear up the confusion for anyone planning summer trips to the national park. Reservations ...

Business Insider

Yosemite is "a beauty" during the warmer months of the year. Yosemite National Park is in California ...


... Yosemite National Park. Skip Yosemite and explore these alternative state parks, which are just as beautiful. Why Dos Rios State Park Is Important ...

Yosemite National Park is welcoming a flood of new hotels, including Firefall Ranch, glamping outpost Under Canvas, and more.

The road to Bodie State Historic Park - Hwy 270 is tentatively scheduled to open for the season on May 10th, 2024!


Upcoming Events

Groveland Grind | Saturday, June 8th

Groveland Trail Heads is excited to announce our 4th annual Groveland Grind! This grassroots adventure bicycle ride will traverse mixed terrain on Yosemite's doorstep! Three challenging routes:

  • 48 miles (approx 5400 ft of elevation gain)

  • 30 miles (approx 3000 ft of elevation gain)

  • 21 miles (approx 2200 ft of elevation gain).

Riders will experience everything the majestic Stanislaus National Forest has to offer; grinding climbs, challenging terrain and amazing views! We'll have an after ride party with food, beverages (including beer) Plus a sweet Raffle! Discount for coaches/members of NICA and riders 18yrs old and under.

For Registration visit:

Tuolumne River Trust Trail-Work Days

In just this past month TRT helped to clear, maintain or build about 2 miles of trail and the volunteer reforestation crew has planted hundreds of trees in the Rim Fire burn scar. They have more exciting opportunities coming up this month and would love to have you join them!

CLICK HERE to sign up for the volunteer days below and more!

  • Thursday, May 2 - Brush and Clear Andersen Mine Trail (moderate hiking) - this trail borders the Wild and Scenic Tuolumne River just below Hetch Hetchy. It has some truly beautiful views, but has become quite overgrown and could use our help! 

  • Wednesday May 8 - Brush trails at Rush Creek (easy hiking) - Help us brush  trails enjoyed by many in the Groveland area, as well as visitors to Rush Creek Lodge. 

  • Saturday May 18 - Volunteer Appreciation BBQ and Pinecrest Cleanup - Join us for a fun Saturday cleaning up litter around Pinecrest lake and join us for a BBQ afterwards as a huge THANK YOU to all of you, our amazing volunteers! 

  • Tuesday May 21 - Preston Falls Trail (Moderate Hiking)  - This is another beautiful trail along the Wild and Scenic Tuolumne River. Volunteers in March helped us to clear much further in on this trail but there is still more to do! Be prepared for a long hike and some spectacular views. 

  • Join TRT and Berkeley Tuolumne Camp on Friday, May 24 for brushing and other trail work on Small Falls Trail!

Do you know of anything happening in Yosemite National Park or the surrounding Gateways that you would like to share with visitors!? What about other tidbits you think we should share each week? Add in the comments or message us with more information!

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