Monday, May 31, 2010
Cycling on Tioga Road
There really is an exceptional quantity of snow in the high country: roadside snowbanks 6-8 feet tall, Tenaya and Siesta Lakes frozen over, lots of runoff, and persistent avalanche danger: a 6-foot granite slab slid onto the road above Yosemite Creek. A mild, sunny day had lots of bird activity: sooty grouse booming, Williamson's sapsucker drumming, and hermit thrush, olive-sided flycatcher and mountain chickadee singing. Marmots were up and about, despite 80% snowcover in the Olmsted Point area.
Skiers could park as low as the White Wolf area and make some runs at Siesta Cirque. The district ranger figures it may be a couple more weeks until the road can be opened to cars.
A couple warm days means the Merced River has leapt from around 1500 cfs at Pohono Bridge to 2800 cfs last night; it should get even more exciting over the next few days.