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Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021

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High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 18, 2021 02:05PM
Just got the call informing us that the High Sierra Camps will not be opening this year due to complications from the ongoing COVID pandemic. They were also closed in 2019 due to excessive snow the previous winter, and in 2020 due to COVID. Those who have reservations will be able to forward them to next year if they so desire.
avatar Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 18, 2021 05:27PM
Same for White Wolf and Tuolumne Lodge.

“Yosemite Hospitality and the National Park Service have been working closely on operating plans for the summer season with a focus on the continuing impacts of COVID-19. It has been determined that Tuolumne Meadows Lodge will be closed this summer for the health and safety of park staff and lodge guests.”

“Yosemite Hospitality and the National Park Service have been working closely on operating plans for the summer season with a focus on the continuing impacts of COVID-19. It has been determined that White Wolf Lodge will be closed this summer for the health and safety of park staff and lodge guests.”

Aramark strikes again. I imagine the conversation with the NPS went like this: Do we have to open this summer? After all, you already let us close the golf course, the raft rentals, the ski area, the shuttles...Lets wait a week before we announce the Tuolumne Grill will be closed too."
avatar Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 18, 2021 05:29PM
....After being closed for 2019-2021, in 2022 they will be closed due to deferred maintenance.
Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 18, 2021 06:14PM
in fairness, I'm not sure Aramark took the lead on this. NPS current intentions are to leave 6 of 7 campgrounds from Big Oak Flat to Tioga Pass closed. 691 campsites will not open this season north of the Valley.. makes the High Sierra Camps look like small potatoes. unless you have a reservation there.

"campground dates are subject to change based on conditions" I fear that's a one way street, but I hope not. no, this ain't Texas, and covid isn't "gone", but it's three months until "summer", and I hope NPS can be flexible and respond to a positive change in covid conditions, and that such a change happens. I wouldn't bet my summer vacation on it, and am looking at Plan B. and C. and D.
Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 19, 2021 01:47AM
While I have been unimpressed with Aramark in the 5 years its has been operating the concessions, it's still in this to make a profit. It makes its money by renting rooms and platform tents and by selling food and merchandise. I have not seen Aramark's contract with NPS, but I doubt that it includes a clause that says Aramark gets paid if its facilities can't open due to acts of God and the like. So I don't think the decision to keep White Wolf, Tuolumne Lodge, and the HSCs closed was something Aramark pushed for - I suspect that, if anything, Aramark argued to open things. It's also in Aramark's interest for the campgrounds to open, even though those are run by NPS, not Aramark, because more campers = more food and more t-shirts sold.

Regardless of the reasons, it's a huge bummer for everyone who loves visiting YNP that so many of the facilities will remain closed this summer.

It would be nice if the situation could be reassessed closer to summer, but is it feasible to hire a sufficient number of seasonal staff member so close to the opening date?
Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 19, 2021 07:15AM
Totally agree, Geezer. I am not an enthusiastic fan of Aramark either,....but I doubt this is their preferred outcome.



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avatar Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 19, 2021 09:27AM
Quote
Not quite The Geezer, but getting there
While I have been unimpressed with Aramark in the 5 years its has been operating the concessions, it's still in this to make a profit. It makes its money by renting rooms and platform tents and by selling food and merchandise. I have not seen Aramark's contract with NPS, but I doubt that it includes a clause that says Aramark gets paid if its facilities can't open due to acts of God and the like. So I don't think the decision to keep White Wolf, Tuolumne Lodge, and the HSCs closed was something Aramark pushed for - I suspect that, if anything, Aramark argued to open things. It's also in Aramark's interest for the campgrounds to open, even though those are run by NPS, not Aramark, because more campers = more food and more t-shirts sold.

Regardless of the reasons, it's a huge bummer for everyone who loves visiting YNP that so many of the facilities will remain closed this summer.

It would be nice if the situation could be reassessed closer to summer, but is it feasible to hire a sufficient number of seasonal staff member so close to the opening date?
avatar Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 19, 2021 09:47AM
My point is that Aramark too easily stops services rather that provide the maintenance and employees necessary to continue. It started with the Tuolumne shuttles, when Aramark did not maintain the shuttles and hire enough drivers, so they discontinued the service. Of course they neglected to update their website, so who know how many backpackers were stranded? Then they failed to maintain enough busses and drivers for the valley, resulting in hours long waits and ANGRY riders. Have you seen the golf course? I suspect it may return to a wilderness condition soon. The webcam at Badger Pass is just cruel. All that gleaming snow and no employees; no skiers. Did you try to rent a raft last summer? Not available.

Didn't the Ahwahnee lose a ratings star under their management?

I'm not sure, but my opinion is that Aeramark's profit margins (or lack of) is why visitors to Yosemite have less options. just my 1 1/2 cents....
Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 21, 2021 01:53AM
As I said, I've been disappointed with Aramark and the things you mention are among the reasons why. But keeping the slopes at Badger Pass closed during the winter - I doubt that was Aramark's call or preferred outcome. I think killing the TM shuttle was short-sighted (and not updating the web site to reflect the cancellation was reprehensible), but it was understandable: some bean-counter at Aramark was thinking only about how much the shuttle cost to run and not how having the shuttle made the prospect of staying TM "Lodge" more enticing, and how not having it put a big crimp in the plans of everyone who visits since suddenly you need to worry about parking near trailheads. And unfortunately the contract with NPS evidently didn't require Aramark to run the TM shuttle. Similarly in the valley, someone's calculus at Aramark was clearly off, and I suspect there was also some poor contracting on the part of NPS that didn't properly incentivize bus maintenance.

But at the end of the day, to short-sighted accountant, those things can be understood as cost-saving measures, cutting services that appear to the analyst to be non-essential. That can't be said of closing the hotels. Even the most myopic planner understands that the hotel, food and merchandise concessions are Aramark's profit centers, and would not want to keep them closed for the sake of saving on the staff salaries necessary to operate them. Nor would Aramark's shareholders be happy about that.
Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
August 02, 2021 04:43PM
It's sad to waste such an opportunity because of covid, but I am sure that it will accessible the next year. It was hard to deal with the idea that there will be no winter sports vacation this year, but this is no the end of the world, there will be a lot of opportunities in the future. The most important thing, it's to recover from the pandemic, because most of the businesses got affected, but there is https://www.antonybatty.com which is specialized in helping these businesses to recover.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/08/2021 06:23AM by Ariamis.
Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 19, 2021 02:14PM
FWIW, TM Lodge was open in 2019...we stayed there in September of that year. I remember the "too much snow" year but it was at least a year or two earlier (I'd have to check my records for the exact date).
Re: High Sierra Camps will not open in 2021
March 21, 2021 01:40AM
2017 was a massive snow year. Tioga Road didn't open until June 29.
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