Yosemite to reopen Friday after smoke forced closure
Yosemite National Park, which closed Sept. 17 due to hazardous air quality, will reopen on Friday, according to a park announcement.
The Creek Fire burning south of Yosemite had sent smoke into the park for days before the closure. Yosemite Valley’s grand landscape was essentially hidden to visitors behind an impenetrable smoky curtain and the air had become a public health issue. Park managers responded by shutting down to traffic and visitors. Park spokesman Scott Gediman said he believed it was the first time in history the park had to close entirely due to smoke and fire conditions.
Roadways into and through the park reopened to traffic earlier this week, but the park has remained closed to visitors.
The park will reopen Friday with “some visitor services” available, according to the announcement, with the rest coming back online over the weekend. Reservations for day passes, campsites and lodging will become available on Friday as well. Campsite bookings can be made via recreation.gov.
Smoke from the Creek Fire brought visibility in Yosemite Valley to the point where the canyon walls could not be seen.