Skip to main content
  1. Sports
  2. Recreation
  3. Outdoor Rec & Adventure

Yosemite's Glacier Point Road reopens

See also

National Park Service officials in Yosemite National Park reopened Glacier Point Road to vehicle traffic yesterday, April 14 -- a sign that fair season access to the backcountry will soon be available. The road closes annually due to winter conditions and had been closed to vehicles since November 18.

Glacier Point Road was cleared of snow and open to bicycles as of Friday, April 11. Vehicles are now also permitted to use the road, which could still close again temporarily if spring storms bring snow to the higher elevations of the park. Glacier Point sits at an elevation of 7,214 feet (2,199 m).

Yesterday's re-opening is among the earliest for Glacier Point Road and is a telltale sign of California's serious drought conditions that haven't spared the high country. The snowpack in Yosemite National Park was reportedly just 33 percent of average as of April 1, and with the exception of 2012, when Glacier Point Road reopened on April 20, the road hasn't opened until at least May during the last decade.

Plenty of snow and ice still cover the higher elevations of the park. The Four Mile Trail from the valley floor to Glacier Point remains closed, for example, the cables on Half Dome are still down and no date has been set for the reopening of Tioga Road, which restores access to Tuolumne Meadows and officially starts the fair-weather backpacking season in Yosemite. Still, the opening of Glacier Point is definitely an annual harbinger of sunny wilderness days to come.

For now, visitors to Yosemite can again drive up and enjoy the views from Glacier Point. Note that vault toilets are available at Glacier Point, but there is no running water. Backpackers wanting to build a little fitness while they await high country access should find hiking opportunities on the Panorama Trail. Be prepared for cold-weather conditions, however.

Plowing to open Tioga Pass begins today, and progress reports will be forthcoming. Visitors can check the status of all roads in the park and get information on current conditions by calling (209) 372-0200 (press 1 then 1).


Did you enjoy this article? Follow this column, and you'll receive an e-mail alert when new articles are posted. No spam! You can also get updates about Fresno backpacking on Twitter and access additional content and images on Facebook.



  • David Price rumors
    Should the bottom-dwelling Tampa Bay Rays trade or keep pitching ace David Price?
    MLB Rumors
  • Hottest WNBA players
    Dig in to this WNBA slideshow and see what has Drake so hot and bothered
    20 Photos
  • Feeling groovy: The truth about Adam Wainwright and the grooved Derek Jeter pitch
    MLB News
  • Rory's dad cashes in
    Rory McIlroy's dad Gerry cashes in on $342,000 bet on son's British Open win
  • Bob Burnquist interview
    Examiner exclusive: Skateboarding legend Bob Burnquist talks Dew Tour and Toyota
  • 40-year-old cheerleader
    40-year-old mom Kriste Lewis becomes New Orleans Saints cheerleader
    NFL News