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Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park

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avatar Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 09, 2011 11:12AM
Yosemite National Park Press Release:


Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park

Date: September 8, 2011

Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park. Yosemite Conservancy and National Park Service Celebrate Completion of $13.5 Million in Upgrades to 75 Miles of Trails and Habitat in the Park.

Yosemite Conservancy and the National Park Service announced the completion of a $13.5 million campaign to restore popular hiking trails in Yosemite National Park from Yosemite Valley to the rugged backcountry of the High Sierra.

"Our goal was elegant in its simplicity - improve the condition of Yosemite's most treasured, high-profile trails in order to protect irreplaceable natural resources," said Mike Tollefson, president, Yosemite Conservancy. "Yosemite's spectacular trails are a mirror of the democratic notion of the National Park Service's founding - they exist for all people for all time."

The six-year Campaign for Yosemite Trails involved 75 miles of trails and is the largest ever trail repair and restoration program undertaken in Yosemite National Park. The milestone was celebrated on Wednesday with a ceremonial dedication of the East Valley Loop Trail, and recognition of generous donations and the skilled work of Yosemite trail crews.

"Yosemite's trails are pathways to discovery and inspiration. Some of the park's most important trails were improved to reverse years of degradation to benefit visitors for decades," said Superintendent Don Neubacher. "The result is better trails, restored habitats and greater education opportunities for visitors."

In the front country, repairs were made to the John Muir Trailhead in the Valley and to the east and west ends of the Yosemite Valley Loop Trail with heavily impacted areas being resurfaced with a natural looking asphalt alternative, repairs to foot bridges and new way finding signs. Near the park's southern entrance, trail improvements in parts of the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias now protect the big tree's root systems.

On 33 miles of the world-renowned John Muir Trail work addressed parts of the trail from Tuolumne Meadows through Little Yosemite Valley to Yosemite Valley. There are new stone walls, rock staircases, and drainage structures, plus habitat restoration, to improve safety and protect areas bordering the trail.

At the May Lake trailhead accessed from Tioga Road, hikers will find a more well-defined route to the summit of Mount Hoffmann, which will protect habitat. Based on the successful work at Mount Hoffmann, additional trail improvements and restoration are being made on the route to Cathedral Peak and the summit to Mount Dana. Also along Tioga Road, improvements were made to trailheads at Tamarack Flat, May Lake, Yosemite Creek/Ten Lakes, Snow Creek, and at Gaylor Lakes. The work is different at each, and hikers may find habitat-friendly and safer parking and access, food storage lockers, or wilderness education exhibits. Major portions of the spectacular 12-mile Red Peak Pass, the Sierra's highest trail at 11,000 feet in southeastern Yosemite, were repaired and rebuilt.

Eight hundred miles of trails wind their way through Yosemite's valleys, meadows, streams, forests and across polished granite. Trail degradation compromises the visitor experience and habitat tremendously. Poor drainage erodes trail surfaces leading hikers to go off-trail, creating multiple social trails that divert water flow and destroy habitat animals depend on.

The Campaign was a collaborative effort between Yosemite Conservancy and the park, with Conservancy donors contributing $10.5 million, and the National Park Service providing $3 million to the trails campaign projects. The Campaign's lead gifts were from David and Dana Dornsife, John and Leslie Dorman, Bell-Carter Foods, Inc., Diane and Bill Zuendt, HEDCO Foundation, Cliff Walker, Bill and Cynthia Floyd, The Richard & Rhoda Goldman Fund, Jon and Lillian Lovelace, and Jim and Anahita Lovelace.

"Improvements were made to trails for every type of visitor from families with small children to ardent backcountry enthusiasts," said John Dorman, Yosemite Conservancy board chairman. "These arteries provide access to unimaginable beauty and a life-time of memories."

Royal Robbins, legendary climber and a Yosemite Conservancy council member, said, "Yosemite's landscape harbors an unforgettable grand collection of peaks, domes, high waterfalls and alpine meadows. The best way to see these natural wonders is by trail."

In the last 15 years alone, Yosemite Conservancy supporters have provided more than $35 million to help the National Park Service restore trails throughout the park.

About Yosemite Conservancy
Yosemite Conservancy is the only philanthropic organization dedicated exclusively to the protection and preservation of Yosemite National Park and enhancement of the visitor experience. The Conservancy works to restore trails, protect wildlife through scientific research and habitat restoration, and offers outdoor programs that provide visitors with unique ways to connect with the park. It has funded over 300 projects through $60 million in grants in areas including trail and habitat restoration, wildlife protection, education, volunteering, and the production of award winning books and DVDs. Learn more at www.yosemiteconservancy.org or call 1-800-469-7275.



Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 12, 2011 09:09AM
"In the front country, repairs were made to the John Muir Trailhead in the Valley and to the east and west ends of the
Yosemite Valley Loop Trail with heavily impacted areas being resurfaced with a natural looking asphalt alternative..."

Ugh, really? I thought maybe we had moved past paving the trails.
Coming across those islands of old asphalt all undercut by erosion always made be kinda sad.
They felt like remnants of old fashioned trail management remedies. Slap some pavement on it.
It pulled me out of whatever reverie I was in while hiking and back to "civilization", development and the constant
so called improvements and manicured nature of the parks. Yes I realize it's front country, heavily impacted areas, but still.

End mini rant. So, anyone see this stuff?? Have a picture?

Might be up there next week if I've been granted the time off. Perhaps I'll run across it... may do a little litter picking for the Facelift.
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 12, 2011 10:15AM
I'm OK with the paving of the first portion of the Mist/JMT. It's SOOOOO used.
It used to be paved BEYOND LYV towards Moraine Dome... (some asphalt is still present)

Part of what they did at the start is get rid of the multiple trails from the HI bridge.
That is a huge improvement imo.

The parking areas... they put in massive trees to eliminate any chance of peeps driving over
shrubs... and put in gravel in two lots I saw that were dirt before.
(Tamarack Creek and Ten Lakes)

Perhaps included in this is the rerouting of the Lukens and Upper Cathedral "meadow" trails
more into the woods.

Wondering if anything is/was being done in Cold Canyon?



Chick-on is looking at you!
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 12, 2011 10:46AM
Quote
chick-on
Wondering if anything is/was being done in Cold Canyon?


Nothing seen when went through there on 18 August.
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 14, 2011 04:23PM
Quote
chick-on
I'm OK with the paving of the first portion of the Mist/JMT. It's SOOOOO used.
It used to be paved BEYOND LYV towards Moraine Dome... (some asphalt is still present)

Part of what they did at the start is get rid of the multiple trails from the HI bridge.
That is a huge improvement imo.

The parking areas... they put in massive trees to eliminate any chance of peeps driving over
shrubs... and put in gravel in two lots I saw that were dirt before.
(Tamarack Creek and Ten Lakes)

Perhaps included in this is the rerouting of the Lukens and Upper Cathedral "meadow" trails
more into the woods.

Wondering if anything is/was being done in Cold Canyon?

Why would the Cold Canyon trail even be considered for ashphalt?
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 14, 2011 05:16PM
Quote
tomdisco
Why would the Cold Canyon trail even be considered for ashphalt?

So I can land my plane, of course.

Uh... guess I have to assume you're serious. Was making a parallel to what
they did to the Lukens and Upper Cathedral trails which formerly went thru
meadows or meadowy areas. I would think they would or at least they should
consider moving the trail thru Cold Canyon where it goes smack thru the meadow.
At least that is how I remember it.



Chick-on is looking at you!
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 15, 2011 04:59PM
Quote
chick-on
Quote
tomdisco
Why would the Cold Canyon trail even be considered for ashphalt?

So I can land my plane, of course.

Uh... guess I have to assume you're serious. Was making a parallel to what
they did to the Lukens and Upper Cathedral trails which formerly went thru
meadows or meadowy areas. I would think they would or at least they should
consider moving the trail thru Cold Canyon where it goes smack thru the meadow.
At least that is how I remember it.

Yes Dale, I was serious. Don't always realize when your are joking around. Also did not know about the upper Cathedral trail because I've only taken the alternate route over Echo Peaks and down past Echo Lake. So they actually put asphalt up there at one time! Yeah, the Cold Canyon meadows still have those endless ruts. I'm one of those horrible wilderness lawbraking hikers who refuses to walk inside those narrow ruts because my boots hit the sides of the walls .
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 15, 2011 09:02PM
Sorry Tom, they rerouted the trails by Lukens and Upper Cathedral for a couple of
reasons... one of which is when a trail goes thru a meadow hikers tend to create
multiple trails thru it in the early spring. Those trails were never paved.
Another reason is the trail causes irregular runoff and upsets the normal balance
of the meadow (something like that). I should just post a picture.



Chick-on is looking at you!
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 15, 2011 09:08PM
Lukens:


Upper Cathedral:


My point was that I would think Cold Canyon would be a candidate for this type of rerouting.



Chick-on is looking at you!
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 15, 2011 09:14PM
Quote
chick-on

My point was that I would think Cold Canyon would be a candidate for this type of rerouting.

As would be McGurk Meadow.
avatar Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 15, 2011 09:10PM
Quote
chick-on

Sorry Tom, they rerouted the trails by Lukens and Upper Cathedral for a couple of
reasons... one of which is when a trail goes thru a meadow hikers tend to create
multiple trails thru it in the early spring. Those trails were never paved.
Another reason is the trail causes irregular runoff and upsets the normal balance
of the meadow (something like that). I should just post a picture.

Of course, the Park Service could have just constructed a boardwalk made from recycled material through those meadows. Would have solved both problems. Grinning Devil


Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 12, 2011 02:17PM
The asphalt makes sense when it is there for certain trails, but when it is not maintained and starts to degraded it makes the trail far worse. Sections of the 4 (or really 4.8) mile trail are good examples of that. But I would think the JMT to the vernal foot bridge would be maintained as it is the busiest trail in the park by far. At least it isn't the promenade to lower yosemite falls.
Re: Campaign Improves Popular Trails in Yosemite National Park
September 12, 2011 10:17AM
The 'trail' from the bridge at the bottom of Vernal Falls to Happy Isles has been paved in the last few years. I suppose it makes it easier to push strollers up there but ??

There are still remnants of an old asphalt road in Little Yosemite. I was surprised to see it there. When was there a road up there and where did it go?
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