Learning to love forest fires in Yosemite National Park

December 4, 2009, 12:11 pm
When southern California is consumed by fire, the state employs an arsenal of equipment and manpower to battle the inferno. The key priority is to save lives and homes.An increasingly familiar image of America's Golden State is of water-bombing aircraft dousing the flames as they lick around million-dollar mansions ...

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Capitol Reef, Waterpocket Fold, Land of the Sleeping Rainbow—all are colorful names to describe a park with many striking characteristics.

Waterpocket Fold, the main feature of the park, is the name of a 100-mile-long fold in the earth's surface. This uplift contains innumerable eroded basins or pockets that hold thousands of gallons of rainwater. These pockets of water have affected the history of humanity within the park and the flora and fauna of the region.

Entering the park from the west gives the most impressive view of the 1,000-foot-high stone barrier into which erosive forces have sculpted fascinating canyons, mesas, buttes and mazes. Once in the park, other astonishing panoramas await you.

Within a short distance of the visitor center, you will see Capitol Dome, Chimney Rock, the Goosenecks and the Egyptian Temple. Hickman Bridge, the Golden Throne and Capitol Gorge reward you after easy to moderate hikes. Prehistoric petroglyphs, the Fruita Schoolhouse, the Gifford Farmhouse and the Behunin Cabin speak of bygone eras and can be reached by car. The 20-mile round-trip Scenic Drive will take you past the Ripple Rock Nature Center and many of the park's features.

If you are seeking a remote wilderness experience, Capitol Reef has it. To the north of Route 24, dirt roads, which generally require high-clearance or 4-wheel-drive vehicles, lead into the park's north end through the heart of Cathedral Valley, an area of monolithic formations of Entrada and Curtis sandstones, some of which are 500 feet high. South of Route 24, graded roads, usually suitable for high-clearance vehicles, lead into some very fine hiking country. Besides good hiking opportunities, the southern part of the park also offers spectacular views of the folded strata of Capitol Reef and the Henry Mountains. Muley Twist Canyon is in the southern end of the park, as is Brimhall Bridge. Check with a park ranger before setting out for any of these more remote locations. Weather conditions may make the roads slick and impassable.

10 years ago
Virginia ...
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I made a custom essay and I found that it is located on the Waterpocket Fold in central Utah, Capitol Reef National Park offers rugged, beautiful scenery with deep and narrow canyons, spectacular vistas, great expanses of slickrock and multi-colored rock layers exposed by the massive fold in the earth's crust. Petroglyphs give evidence of the early inhabitants of the area dating back at least 10,000 years. The area also has a more recent history in evidence with the orchards and buildings from the Fruita community that was founded by Mormon pioneers in 1880.
10 years ago
We want to spend two days in Kearsarge pass and Mt. Whitney around X'mas. Will those trails be closed that time?
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Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks, California, Hiking, Park Passes and Fees, Safety
10 years ago
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The trails would likely not be closed, however the roads getting you there could be, depending on snowfall.  The road that most often closes during the winter months is the one connecting Sequoia and Kings Canyon.  Bring heavy winter clothing and the right footwear.  If you only have a couple days, you may have better luck seeing Mt. Whitney from the Eastern side, in the Inyo National Forest.  

In both the National Parks, and in the National Forest, you need permits for overnight and day hikes.  I really enjoyed my time there this summer, and I hope you do too!

10 years ago
Yosemite National Park to Have 20% More Wildfires by 2050 - And They'll Be Stronger, Too

November 2, 2009, 7:45 am
According to research published in the International Journal of Wildland Fire, Yosemite is likely to see about a 20% increase in both the number of fires and the area of land which burns at high intensity, from 2020-2049.Read ...

Hikers, campers, hunters uged to use caution in Yellowstone bear country

October 26, 2009, 7:36 am
With the general rifle season opening on Sunday for big game across Montana, state and federal agencies are urging hunters to be bear aware. Yellowstone National Park, the Forest Service and Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks each issued the same statement urging people to be cautious during this time of year, when black and ...

Wintery weather begins to close Colorado mountain roads

October 21, 2009, 7:51 am
Weekend vacationers, hunters and traveling tourists be forewarned: Road closure season is here. Several popular high-elevation routes in Rocky Mountain National Park and Roosevelt National Forest are now closed off for the season.In Rocky Mountain National Park, Fall River Road is gated off for the season, park spokeswoman Kyle Patterson said.The primary artery ...

Snow closes two roads in Yosemite National Park

October 21, 2009, 7:05 am
Park rangers say two popular routes through Yosemite National Park are closed for the second time this month because of snow and icy weather. Tioga Road, the highest elevation route through the Sierra Nevada, closed Monday to all traffic. Glacier Point Road, one of the park's popular sightseeing paths, is ...

Park Service averages 11 searches per day

October 20, 2009, 6:46 am
The ripest recipe for trouble in a national park? Young men hiking on a weekend who make a bad decision or two and end up hurt, exhausted or lost. On average, 11 search-and-rescue operations are launched in national parks every day. While expenses average around $900, the price can easily jump into the thousands ...

Half Dome cables down at Yosemite

October 20, 2009, 6:40 am
The season is definitely changing at Yosemite National Park, where the Half Dome cables have been removed for the season, and where snow and ice are causing temporary road closures. The cables, which enable hikers to summit the majestic granite dome, are taken down each fall and replaced in the spring. ...

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