Daily Report - Yosemite National Park
Monday, March 19th, 2018
Yosemite National Park Zone Forecast
Today: Mostly sunny. Not as cool. Highs 47 to 55 at 5000 feet... 41 to 46 at 8000 feet.
Tonight: Partly cloudy in the evening then becoming mostly cloudy. Lows 28 to 38 at 5000 feet...18 to 28 at 8000 feet.
Tuesday: Slight chance of rain and snow in the morning, then rain and snow likely in the afternoon. Near the crest, chance of snow in the morning, then snow likely in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation 70 percent. Snow accumulation up to 5 inches. Snow level 6500 feet. Highs 45 to 53 at 5000 feet...41 to 46 at 8000 feet.
Additional Point Forecast Weather Links:
Yosemite Valley | Wawona | Tuolumne Meadows | Glacier Point | Big Oak Flat | Hetch Hetchy | El Portal | Mariposa | Badger Pass
NEW AND HAPPENING TODAY
Message from the Superintendent, March 19th
Thank you for the warm welcome for my family and I as we arrived last week. I am now here full time and will be focused on getting out to meet all of you and see your operations, districts, facilities and better understand your needs in the next few weeks. David Moore continues as our acting Deputy Superintendent for the next few months and I appreciate that he is here with us to focus on operational, human resources, and business needs for Yosemite while helping the ELT and all of you. I will be working to fill the Deputy job and many of the temporary/acting leadership and staff positions as soon as possible.
My family and I will be living in the Valley. My wife Amy Schneckenburger and our daughters Grace Ann (14) and Ella Ruth (10) are very excited to be a part of this community, the schools, and to be here with all of you.
My work cell phone is (209) 347 6500 and note my email is email@example.com (there is the other “Mike Reynolds” at Death Valley and we cross a lot of mail!)
I will endeavor to continue this type of consistent communication carried over from Chip and Woody the last few months. My understanding is most of you do appreciate hearing from this office consistently. Please let me know if there are improvements I can make to this and other communications so we can be a transparent and connected team ahead.
In addition to getting to know each of you, my initial priorities are to get out to the many partners, communities, and local and regional leaders around and in Yosemite to listen and understand it’s many stakeholders. I also will be sharing some of my main priorities with you soon and trying to link what the ELT and all of you are doing especially with workforce and employee culture so these goals give us a coordinated direction.
Things Happening in the Park
Our thanks to the roads and trails teams along with the Rangers and many of you on staff who kept visitors and all of us safe and running through the spring storms last week. Everyone’s dedication to a safe environment and keeping things going was very appreciated. I was able to get out with some ride alongs and operations this past weekend and I appreciated the invites to do so very much. Keep them coming and please let my office know of employee gatherings, events you would like me to attend, or times I can hold a gathering or listening session with your district, team, or unit.
We are grateful to the team that put together, and all that took time to attend and participate in, the successful Women’s Leadership Symposium. This is one of many positive actions that support an inclusive and empowered workforce at Yosemite. Watch for more activities and follow up actions from this well attended event.
Also, a shout out to the team that recently put out the new Yosemite Welcome Guide for seasonals and new employees-the Communications & Collaboration workgroup. It’s a great effort and helps in a complicated place like Yosemite to give everyone a great start to their responsibilities and the life details they need to know to be successful here.
I stopped over to see how the new Base Camp food service with the Starbucks service was operating Friday at the Lodge. This is a great new addition to the services offered to the public and thanks to all of you who worked from the NPS side to help get the opening on schedule with our partners.
Next weekend will see a number of events and many guests from the Yosemite Conservancy for their annual Spring Gathering and John Muir Heritage Society meetings. I will be around all weekend along with many of the park leadership team to attend various events and speaking engagements.
This week begins the first welcoming and on boarding sessions (Monday) for our first waves of seasonal employees for the summer. Welcome to all new and returning employees. Onboarding is planned for most Mondays ahead as the summer season unfolds. Our thanks to the Servicing Human Resource Office staff and our admin teams helping to make this with our supervisors and the ELT as smooth as possible.
There is not much news currently from WASO on budget progress, the proposed fee increases, or any other significant service-wide changes at this time. There were budget hearings with Secretary Zinke as the witness last week: https://naturalresources.
Last, I am already impressed with the quality, dedication, and sincere professionalism of all of you here in Yosemite. It is an honor and pleasure to be able to be here with you and you are very appreciated by all you serve everyday. Thank you for your dedication to the NPS and here at this special park. I hope to see you very soon in person and around the park and community.
Hooting Owl Lecture Series
Join Sarah Stock for a hopeful presentation on how the dire fate of animals in Yosemite is being reversed. She will talk about restoring the endangered Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep, protecting Peregrine Falcons, and discovering the elusive Sierra Nevada red fox. These recovery stories in Yosemite demonstrate that good things are possible when we boldly address past mistakes.
This Hooting Owl Lecture Series will take place on Thursday, March 22 from 6:30 to 7:30 pm at the Wawona Community Center. Doors open at 6:00 pm. (S. Stock)
Rock Debris on Park Roads
With a wet storm arriving on Tuesday, drivers are reminded of the greater likelihood of encountering rock debris on park roads during wet weather. Although rockfalls are always possible along all park roadways, they tend to happen more often during winter storms.
The area affected by the June 12, 2017 rockfall at Parkline Slab (downhill of Dog Rock) may be particularly prone to storm-triggered rockfalls, as there is abundant loose debris on the bedrock slope above the road that is likely to be mobilized by significant rainfall.
Those driving the El Portal Road should be especially vigilant for rock debris below Parkline Slab during or immediately after rainstorms, and be aware that road closures may occur in response to these storms.
If you encounter rock debris on the road, please report it to Park Dispatch. Do not attempt to remove debris yourself – leave that task to road crews equipped to do so safely. (G. Stock)
Madelyn Ruffner will be acting Division Chief for Project Management until March 21. She can be reached at 209-379-1226.
Chris Fehrman will be acting Division Chief for Project Management March 22. He can be reached at 209-379-1116. (J.Chavez)
Wawona Hooting Owl Lecture Series March 22
"Back from the Brink: Bighorns, Peregrines, and Foxes in Yosemite" by Sarah Stock, Wildlife Ecologist
CONSTRUCTION & TRAFFIC DELAYS
Yosemite Valley Parking and Road Work
Parking and road work is ramping up in Yosemite Valley. The first project is final paving at the Yosemite Falls Parking Area (west of Yosemite Lodge). Please direct vehicles to park at Yosemite Village or Half Dome Village as the Yosemite Falls parking lot will close. RVs may park along Stoneman Meadow or Half Dome Village. Commercial tour buses may continue to park at the Yosemite Falls parking area. Work at the Yosemite Falls Parking area is estimated to finish by the end of March. (L. Acree)
Museum/District Building Electrical Rehab Project
This project will rehabilitate the electrical system in the Museum/District Building by installing grounding in the existing electrical circuits. The Contractor mobilized on Monday, December 18th and the project is expected to run for 6 months. The 8 parking stalls to the west of the building between the sidewalk on the south and the south end of the fence to the north will become the Contractor's staging areas. (K. White)