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With so much snow, Yosemite will keep winter trails open a few more weeks

With so much snow, Yosemite will keep winter trails open a few more weeks
The calendar may say it's spring, but conditions are perfect for winter recreation at Yosemite National Park. (NPS Photo)

Yosemite National Park on Thursday reported perfect snow conditions around Glacier Point Road on the south wall of Yosemite Valley. The park will keep winter trails open through April 14 for visitors who want to snowshoe and cross-country ski to destinations such as Summit Meadow or scenic Glacier Point.

Typically winter recreation ends when plowing begins for the seasonal switch to summer on Glacier Point Road. This year, plowing will start Monday. But with so much snow, officials decided to squeeze a little more winter out of spring.

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Visitors should begin their journeys at the Badger Pass Parking Area to access a network with about a dozen routes, including one to the historic and rustic Ostrander Lake Ski Hut where you can spend the night. (Overnight visitors need to obtain a permit at the A frame ranger station.) Maps are posted at the trailhead too.

However, the downhill Yosemite Ski and Snowboard Area, including the Nordic Center and related facilities, will close for the season Sunday.

In other parts of the park, the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias is open but the road is still covered in snow. Those who want to trek in four miles should be experienced in winter travel, the park’s Twitter feed said.

The National Weather Service report for Yosemite called for clear and sunny skies with highs in the mid-40s Friday through Sunday, with the possibility of showers early next week.

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