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Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend

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I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 29, 2016 05:58PM
Have always decided to stay away from Yosemite on Memorial Day weekend but this year I thought I would give it a try. My thinking was drive in later in the day on Saturday and go in on the east side. Checked weather reports and road conditions and everything look like a go to go in at Tioga Pass. Driving up the 395 from So. Cal. I get to Lone Pine and the weather on the east side looked like a winter storm blew in. I didn't panic as it looked like a bit of clearing further north. I was way wrong. From Bishop I could see a black wall of clouds as far north as I could see. The freeway signs all said Tioga Pass was open. I get to Lee Vining and I still can't believe the pass is open as it was raining hard in Lee Vining and after a quick stop at the Mobile station I heard it was snowing hard at the pass. I didn't bring chains as the weather said only partly cloudy? I start driving up the pass and the only vehicles I saw were coming "down" the pass. As I get closer the rain turns into a nasty heavy snow! Bad news! I know I'm going to get turned away at the pass but I keep going. Now the good news. As hard as it was snowing the snow wasn't sticking to anything. The outside temp was 34 so I guess it was more of a warm/wet snow. Showed my card at the both and drove right in. drinking smiley

It's funny to see all of the people ill dressed for the conditions. I get that it was much warmer in the valley but these folks were running around in shorts and tank tops trying to stay warm along the pull-outs in the Tioga Pass area. confused smiley



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/29/2016 06:00PM by ERICG.
Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 30, 2016 10:44PM
We got to the park at 2 pm on Friday and there was only one car in front of us at the 41 entrance. Saturday went to the valley at 9 am and left just after noon after getting a sandwich at Degnan's. It was starting to get hot and crowded so we left before the traffic got too bad. We were in Yosemite West when the storm you were talking about hit and there was heavy rain and hail off and on for over an hour. Many people have no idea of the temperature differences in the park and I have seen people like you are talking about at T Meadows dressed for hot summer weather and it was cold, raining and hailing.

One thing I can say in addition to the crowds and traffic the mosquitoes were bad every where we went, even at Glacier Point. I had bug spray on and still got bit more that I have ever had.
Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 31, 2016 10:48AM
When we left on Sunday the line to get into the park went from the 41 entrance all the way back into Fish Camp.
Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 31, 2016 01:56PM
Quote
ERICG
When we left on Sunday the line to get into the park went from the 41 entrance all the way back into Fish Camp.
We left Monday around 2 pm and there were only a few cars coming in on the 41.
Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 31, 2016 11:02AM
Sadly, M came down with a virus this weekend, so we had to bail on our plans. sigh. After a few days in bed, she is now feeling a bit better....hope to get out soon!



Balzaccom

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Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 31, 2016 01:57PM
Quote
balzaccom
Sadly, M came down with a virus this weekend, so we had to bail on our plans. sigh. After a few days in bed, she is now feeling a bit better....hope to get out soon!
Glad she is feeling better.
Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 31, 2016 11:05AM
Yes, I can confirm Eric G's comment. We left the valley about 9am Sunday 29th. Went out through the highway 41 South gate and a huge line of cars were trying to get in. The line went from the entrance beyond Fish Camp all the way to the Sugar Pine Railroad turn off! I checked google maps and I believe that is a five mile distance. I estimate that's 880 cars if each one took 30ft, probably more considering it was bumper to bumper.
Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 31, 2016 02:02PM
Quote
danimal
Yes, I can confirm Eric G's comment. We left the valley about 9am Sunday 29th. Went out through the highway 41 South gate and a huge line of cars were trying to get in. The line went from the entrance beyond Fish Camp all the way to the Sugar Pine Railroad turn off! I checked google maps and I believe that is a five mile distance. I estimate that's 880 cars if each one took 30ft, probably more considering it was bumper to bumper.
We were talking to someone that was trying to get in around 11am and they said the last 4 miles to the 41 gate took them over 2 1/2 hours.
Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 31, 2016 02:54PM
My neighbor tried to come in from the east side yesterday midday and turned around. The line was down to Tioga Lake
avatar Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
May 31, 2016 11:41PM
Quote
hikerchick395

My neighbor tried to come in from the east side yesterday midday and turned around. The line was down to Tioga Lake

That's not that bad, relatively speaking. From my experience, that's only about a 1/2 hour wait from that point.



Leave No Trace
Re: I Made It In On Memorial Day Weekend
June 07, 2016 12:03PM
We were planning on going in on Thursday morning and avoiding the Valley as much as possible until the end of our stay (after the holiday weekend). Unfortunately, there was an unexpected death in my family and we were in Connecticut for a funeral until Saturday afternoon. That meant we got into the park on Sunday afternoon. I considered going in at either Arch Rock or the South entrance but, from force of habit as much as anything else, came in 120 (we were coming from SFO). It was clear sailing until about a mile outside the entrance station. We sat in line for about 45 minutes there...not bad compared to some stories I've heard (*) but, given my normal ability to time my entrances, it was by far the longest we've ever sat in line. From the other side of the gate down to the BOF/41 intersection by the river, all was smooth again but very quickly after turning onto 41, we inched along and it took me at least another hour to get to the turnoff for Wawona (we were staying in Yosemite West). Heading south on the road was fine once we got past the cars trying to turn into the BVF parking area but coming north, cars into the Valley, it was bumper-to-bumper to a little south of Turtleback Dome (and based on what I saw on the Southside drive when we turned off, it was probably bumper-to-bumper throughout the Valley). All-in-all it was 7 hours from SFO to Yose West...a trip that typically takes us about half that time.

We were able to avoid pretty much all significant traffic for the rest of the trip (although my wife tried to go into the Valley on Tuesday afternoon while I was out for a long hike (she's recovering from a broken ankle so could only join me for portions of my hikes) and she said traffic and parking around the Village were pretty awful).

I'll post some TR's after I have a chance to get settled in back home (we just got back late last night) but the Sunday experience was ample evidence to confirm that one should never try to come into the Park on a holiday weekend.

(*) A ranger we spoke with on our way out of the Park said that the wait at the 120 gate earlier on Sunday (we didn't arrive until about 2:30 pm) was averaging 4 hours!
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