YOSEMITE — The peace and relative quiet of Yosemite in winter, particularly after a fresh snow fall, can be a magical experience. Unfortunately, travel in California is currently restricted to within 120 miles of home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, yet the beauty of Yosemite persists.
Yosemite is now open only to day use visitors, between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.
This view adjacent to Southside Drive following a snow fall last year, shows the dramatic changes in lighting that can occur in Yosemite Valley. This is one of the reasons Yosemite draws countless photographers throughout the year. Visible here are El Capitan in warm afternoon sunlight and Bridalveil Fall opposite in the cool shadows.
Driving into Yosemite Valley in snowy conditions requires advance preparation. Snow tires and/or chains are required for your vehicle. Four-wheel drive is helpful, too. Be sure to check current road conditions before attempting to drive into the park during winter, by calling 209-372-0200 (press 1, then 1), or online here.
Vehicles without required equipment may be denied entry at park entrance gates.
©2019 Photography by Scott Highton.