Wilderness Conditions Update

General Conditions

June 10, 2024

This past winter was more moderate than the epic snowpack of the winter of 2022–2023. The snow line is now around 9,000 feet with patchy snow down to 7,000 feet. South facing and open areas are more likely to be snow free, while north facing and forested areas are more likely to hold snow. Navigation through snow-covered areas can be challenging and even require a GPS. Bring an extra battery for your phone if relying on it for navigation.

Peak flows occurred in mid-May. As the weather continues to warm, snowmelt fills the creeks and waterfalls. Water is abundant. Plan your route accordingly. Take caution when crossing streams. Flows may vary over the course of the day, with high flow not always late in the day. Snow bridges are melting and failing and should not be relied on. Evaluate the situation as a group and turn around if you do not feel safe crossing a creek. The best option maybe to stop, turn around, and be safe.

Trails can be wet and muddy in many locations in the park and may have sections of flowing or standing water on them. Stay on the trail instead of creating side trails, causing long lasting resource damage. It is often easier to stay on the trail and get your feet wet than finding multiple alternate paths off or around the trail. Bring multiple pairs of socks for each day of your trip to maintain proper foot health, putting on dry socks when you reach your camp each night.

Due to previous fires and early season conditions, logs may cross the trail. Where possible, step over logs to avoid creating social trails. Trail crews will work throughout the season to clear logs.

Yosemite Valley

  • The upper section of the John Muir Trail (JMT) between Clark Point and the Panorama Trail junction (near the top of Nevada Fall) is closed due to trail damage. There is no estimated opening date. Hikers can access Little Yosemite Valley via the upper section of the Mist Trail.

  • From July through October, the lower section of the Mist Trail will be closed Monday–Thursday from 7:00 am to 3:30 pm. Vernal and Nevada Falls are available via the lower section of the JMT then travel down from Clark Point to the upper section of the Mist Trail adjacent to Nevada Fall.

  • Trail is clear and dry to Sunrise Creek/Clouds Rest Junction continuing to the top of Clouds Rest (south facing). The north facing side of Clouds Rest continues to be snowy and icy.

  • The Merced River Canyon is clear with minimal flooding from Little Yosemite Valley to Merced Lake.

  • Snow Creek switchbacks are sun-warmed, and rattlesnakes have been observed.

  • The Panorama Trail is clear.


  • The trail up the Chilnualna Falls is clear of trees and mostly dry. Chilnualna Creek is running full. Be cautious near the creek and when crossing.

  • The Buena Vista loop ranges from muddy and wet to a flowing stream increasing to snowy as one gains elevation. Snow is present around Crescent Lake, Johnson Lake, Buena Vista Lake, and the pass to Buck Camp. The trail between Johnson and Crescent has flowing water on it.

  • There are more than 100 down trees around the loop, most of which lie on the north and south side of the loop.

  • Bugs are minimal at those higher elevations as of early June.

Hetch Hetchy

  • Wapama Falls bridge is passable and mist bellows over it and water covers the path and bridges in places.

  • Due to bear activity, camping is discouraged around Lake Vernon.

  • Frog Creek can be harder to cross due to high flows as of late May.

  • Down trees and overgrown white-thorn Ceanothus make the trail more difficult to follow from the junction after the Frog Creek Crossing to the junction south of Beehive.

Glacier Point Road

  • Snow is patchy in some areas along the south rim and in forested areas.

  • The trail to Taft Point from the Pohono Trail Junction is heavily damaged from flooding. Ruts are as deep as one foot in some sections and are often flowing with water.

  • As the trail leaves the forest to the slabs, it again becomes heavily braided from flooding. Rock is loose and makes the trail hard to discern from the surrounding slab.

  • The trail between Taft Point and Tunnel View is occasionally damaged by flooding.

Tuolumne Meadows

  • Snow is melting quickly but may impact navigation.

  • Tuolumne Meadows Backpackers Campground is closed this season.

  • PCT hikers can hike to Yosemite Valley to resupply until the Tuolumne Meadows Post Office opens. PCT hikers can stay one night in the Yosemite Valley Backpackers Campground but are not eligible for side trips unless acquiring an additional permit.

Outside of Yosemite

Current Closures

All current trail closures are listed on the current conditions page.

Tuolumne Meadows Campground, including the backpackers campground, will be closed for the 2024 season. There will be no camping of any kind in Tuolumne Meadows nor any exceptions for backpackers or hikers. Backpackers will have to camp at least four trail miles from Tuolumne Meadows.

Full or partial meadow closures to free-range grazing are in effect at Crescent Lake, Hook Lake North, Isberg Lake, Miller Lake, Rodger's Lake, Turner Meadow, and Upper Kerrick Meadow to align with the 2020 Biological Opinion for Yosemite toads and mountain yellow-legged frogs, and Virginia Canyon - Castle Camp for protection of sensitive vegetation resources. Further guidance is provided in the Superintendent's Compendium; detailed maps of meadow closures are at the stock use page.

Trails in Yosemite may be closed when there are hidden hazards or are impassable due to rock fall, snow, ice, or fire. Open trails are not necessarily free of hazards. By entering the wilderness, you are assuming responsibility for your safety and must use good judgment.

Wilderness Permits

Wilderness permits are required for overnight stays in the Yosemite Wilderness. Reserved permits can be picked up at the following locations:

Wilderness Permit Reservations

All wilderness permits are available by reservation at Recreation.gov (help desk available Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm). Reservations are available up to 24 (168 Days) weeks to 3 days ahead of your entry date.

Yosemite Valley Wilderness Center

Open daily from 8 am to 5 pm. Wilderness permits available, maps for sale, and bear canisters for rent.

Tuolumne Meadows Wilderness Center

Open daily from 8 am to 5 pm. Wilderness permits available, maps for sale, and bear canisters for rent.

Big Oak Flat Information Station

Open daily from 8 am to 5 pm. Wilderness permits available, maps for sale, and bear canisters for rent.

Wawona Visitor Center at Hill's Studio

Open daily from 8 am to 5 pm. Wilderness permits available, maps for sale, and bear canisters for rent.

Hetch Hetchy Entrance Station

Hetchy Road is open from sunrise to sunset. Wilderness permits for the Hetch Hetchy area and bear canister rentals are available at the entrance station. There is no access to Hetch Hetchy beyond open hours (overnight parking is permitted in the overnight parking lot near the backpackers campground).

Food Storage

Bear resistant food canisters are required in the Yosemite Wilderness. Use a canister to store all food or scented items when left unattended. Remember that anything used in, on, or around the body is considered a food item. Whenever food or scented items are out, please keep them within arm's reach, even while day hiking.

If a bear approaches your camp, act immediately to scare it away. Maintain a safe distance while making as much noise as possible. Throw small stones or pines cones toward the bear, being careful not to strike the bear on the head. If the bear returns, repeat. Do not attempt to retrieve food or gear from a bear until it abandons the items.

Last updated: June 12, 2024

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