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Re: Curry Evacuation- Short Trip Report

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Curry Evacuation- Short Trip Report
December 27, 2021 04:41PM
Zipped to Yosemite to stay two nights in a heated tent cabin on Christmas day. Arrived at mid day and had a nice walk up out of Tunnel View to inspiration point- it was snowing lightly for the entire walk. Made our way down and got checked in about a half hour early which was nice (5pm check in is pretty crazy in my opinion). We had known that finding a meal on Christmas night might be a challenge since we were not interested in the expense of the Awahnee. Nothing in Curry village- so were off to the lodge area. It was a wet snow so we opted to take the shuttle. It is strange with the new system and not a lot of information- the shuttle drivers are a bit cut off from "the people" so not ideal for questions. We were dropped in the main hub area with no clue about the shuttle going in the other direction. It did show up shortly and delivered us to the lodge.

We made our way to the mountain room where we were able to cobble together a dinner (prepared salad, veggie wrap pre-packaged, and vegan chili (very good) and two cold beers. It was a nice mellow vibe in there with the fire going and not too many people. We took our time and watched the snow dropping big flakes outside. The families were roasting marshmallows on the indoor fire, looked fun for the kids! We mosey-ed out just about 8 o'clock and poked our head into the reception at the lodge to see when the shuttle had come through since we had seen online that they were running about every 30 minutes and didn't want to wait outside for 30 minutes. She said we just missed the last one for the night! What?? We had read that they ran until 10pm. We should have asked to make sure, obviously. She said it had been very unpredictable since starting back up and they didn't know when it started and stopped. It was dumping pretty hard and after asking a few folks if they were driving over to curry village and getting shot down, we started walking. It was quite a walk back- heavy snow, about 2-4 inches on the paths depending upon the spot and very dark. Not many cars on the road. It was Christmas! We slept good that night!

Woke up the next morning to snow everywhere! Trees full, cabins covered, cars buried! It was amazing. What a sight. We were happy. Cleared the truck and headed through the valley. Stopping for lots of beautiful photos. Stopped at tunnel view for some more amazing shots. It cleared and the views were pretty awesome. Continued up the hill with the plan to snow shoe out toward Dewey Pt. Got to the turn off and the rangers were posted up with the road closed. What?!? I was pretty ticked that there were NO signs down at the valley or even at tunnel view to let us know. Cmon. The rangers were very rude when I mentioned that it would be very nice if they could let folks know- shrug.

Back down to the valley. Pulled over before the four mile trail and put on our snow shoes and headed out. Had an amazing day out in the valley romping around. Mostly along the river, wonderful views. So peaceful, not many people out there in the middle, the snow was pretty deep. Fluffy and fun.

Got back to the tent cabin about 4:30 and found a note on our door. It said we were being mandatory evacuated and need to be out by 4pm. Umm.... Packed up. Walked to reception- about 30 of us in line. The guy at the desk when we got up there said we could go to one of the hard cabins but they were expecting the power to go out and we would lose heat. Plus we would have to pay for an "upgrade". No thanks. They were bracing for a big storm (well not by Tahoe standards but I don't think they are quite as prepared and the visitors are pretty clueless about snow safety) and moving people out quickly. We just decided to hit the road and drove our 4.5 hours back to Santa Cruz.

It was disappointing but also an amazing day in Yosemite. Love it there!
I guess the report turned a little long, sorry!
Re: Curry Evacuation- Short Trip Report
December 28, 2021 05:04AM
Re: Curry Evacuation- Short Trip Report
December 29, 2021 06:46AM
Good story! Glad you made it out without problems, and that you enjoyed the time you had there.

It's a snowy winter so far, and that's a good thing!

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Or just read a good mystery novel set in the Sierra; https://www.amazon.com/Danger-Falling-Rocks-Paul-Wagner/dp/0984884963
Re: Curry Evacuation- Short Trip Report
January 05, 2022 07:15PM
Thank you for the report. Enjoyed reading it very much. Even read parts of it to my family.

We were there just before you, also stayed in Curry Village, and ate at the lodge, and debated taking the shuttle. But the previous year we had spent so much time waiting for the shuttle, combined with the fact that the shuttle stop right by our lodging (Stoneman) was out of service made us drive. Glad that we drove now.

Similar experience with the rangers a couple of years back ... not regarding snow. We were coming down 120 and there were hardly any cars there; But the ranger had the road blocked as one way. He could have easily let us pass, but he took the lazy way out and had us wait forever. I kept thinking you have this amazing job. you're a ranger in Yosemite. You could put a little more effort into it.

But still, we love the park.
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