Saturday, January 1, 2011

La Nina Settles In

It's been a pretty dynamic start to our Sierra winter with frequent storms and plentiful snow and rain. Sierra-wide, precipitation is reportedly twice normal. For New Year's Day the park got some snow down below the 4000' mark though that's lifted in the afternoon.
Highway 140 was closed by a rockslide just above Parkline on Thursday morning, but NPS road crews did some blasting and re-opened the road last evening. The recent cold/wet weather has brought a lot of rocks down here and there.
Down canyon at Clearinghouse, there's a bank of yellow mustard (Sinapis) in bloom. This is the green season below 3000' here, and the El Portal area is lush with the new foliage of lupine, poppies, etc. ready to add color in a couple more months. We'll be looking for waterfall buttercups within the next few weeks, as well as skiing on a deep snowpack above 6000.'


  1. Pete,

    Given the heavy snowfall this winter I'm thinking of moving my HSC reservation dates from early/mid July to later in the summer. Do you think it's prudent to do so?

  2. Especially with La Nina you never know what the remainder of the storm season will hold. Some observers believe that this pattern means a wet start to the winter and a dry finish. You could be just fine in early July, but later is always safer...