Winter storm shuts down these areas in Sequoia and Yosemite National Parks

Local News

FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE)- A week after the National Park Service announced the phased reopening of the iconic Giant Forest in Sequoia National Park, a number of severe weather events will shut down parts of Sequoia National Park and Yosemite National Park.

According to a post on Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park’s Facebook page, The Generals Highway above Hospital Rock closed Sunday evening, and the Potwisha Campground closes at noon Monday, December 13.

According to the National Weather Service, a Winter Storm Warning is in effect until Tuesday a 10 p.m. In the Sierra Nevada from Yosemite National Park to Sequoia National Park, heavy snow is expected to bring two to five feet of fresh powder above the 5,000-foot elevation and six to eight feet of snow is possible at the highest elevations. Additionally, winds will be gusting up to 65 miles per hour.

Additionally, the forest service is urging visitors to carry tire chain restrictions as they may be enacted at any time during the winter months. To see the current tire restrictions, click here.

Sequoia National Park phased reopening

The Giant Forest in Sequoia National Park which is home to the largest living tree on earth, General Sherman, was reopened to the public on a limited schedule on December 11 after being shut down to public access since mid-September because of the KNP Complex Fire.

According to the National Park Service, access to the Giant Forst is as follows for the upcoming weeks:

The schedule for access to the Giant Forest is as follows. This schedule may change at any time due to weather or other conditions.  
Saturday, December 11 – Sunday, December 12: OPEN (only two days due to forecasted winter weather) 
Monday, December 13 – Thursday, December 16: CLOSED 
Friday, December 17 – Monday, December 20: OPEN 
Tuesday, December 21 – Thursday, December 23: CLOSED 
Thursday, December 24 – Monday, January 3: OPEN 

The reopening weekend may be further affected by the series of winter storms, due to inclement weather, rock or debris fall, or other hazardous conditions.

Additionally, Sunday, December 12 is a fee-free day in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park where the usual $35 vehicle pass will be waived.

Reservations at Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park is currently open with some services limited due to COVID-19. Tioga Road which includes Highway 120 through the park and Glacier Point Road is closed for the season due to snow. 

For those wanting to get ahead of a summer campground reservation, the park is rolling out a new lottery system for the North Pines Campground.

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