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Yosemite roads remain closed; power outages likely until Saturday

March 23, 2011 |  4:55 pm

Upper Yosemite Fall in Yosemite National Park during a break in the snowstorm that has shut down the area since Sunday. As of Wednesday afternoon, all roads leading into Yosemite National Park remain closed due to snow, ice, mudslides, fallen trees and downed power lines, and power outages are affecting most buildings and services within the park.

"At this point we are hoping to have the roads open completely by the weekend, but at that point will likely still have limited services because PG&E [Pacific Gas & Electric] is estimating that we won’t receive power until Saturday," Park spokeswoman Kari Cobb told Outposts.

Cobb added that areas being powered by backup generators are spotty at best. "None of the guest rooms at Yosemite Lodge or Curry Village have power, nor the residential housing. The Ahwahnee has a couple of rooms on generator. The Visitor Center is open but the museum is not; the grocery store is open but the deli’s not. Those things that do have generators will be open but a lot of it doesn’t, so a lot won’t be open."

When the roads closed Monday, about 600 visitors were in park. Of those, approximately 450 guests decided to leave the park voluntarily Monday afternoon. Cobb said that anyone who wanted to stay could, but that "we aren’t allowing any more visitors into the park at this point, and are reassessing conditions on a daily basis."

DNC Parks & Resorts, the reservation service for Yosemite, and campground reservationists are contacting guests with upcoming bookings about 48 hours in advance to let them know that they have had to cancel their requests. Currently, no reservations are due into the park until Friday. 

For 24-hour information about roads within the park, call (209) 372-0200; for roads outside of Yosemite, contact Caltrans at (800) 427-7623.  For information about reservations and accommodations, call (801) 559-4884.

-- Kelly Burgess

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All roads into Yosemite temporarily closed

Photo: Upper Yosemite Falls in Yosemite National Park during a break in the snowstorm that has shut down the area since Sunday. Credit: Kari Cobb / National Park Service

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