After extensive restoration, the Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias will reopen to Yosemite Visitors on June 15, 2018. The privilege to access this remarkable place will be regained along with the opportunity to enjoy all the improvements! Changes made since the closure in July 2015 will not only benefit the visitor’s experience, they will also ensure a healthier future for these special trees.
The four square-mile Mariposa Grove is home to 500 mature giant sequoias. The species itself is among the rarest, oldest and largest living organisms in the world. As if that resume wasn’t impressive enough, the awe-inspiring nature of this grove historically served as a catalyst for the original concept of national parks. When President Lincoln signed legislation protecting Mariposa Grove and Yosemite Valley for, “public use, resort, and recreation” in 1864, it sparked the profound idea that places like this should be preserved for future generations.
The Mariposa Grove restoration efforts aimed to conserve one of Yosemite’s most jaw-dropping icons. A primary focus of the work involved minimizing human disturbance of sequoia water intake. To achieve this goal, crews removed large amounts of asphalt that had diverted water from the trees’ shallow root system. They set up trails and pathways more sympathetic to the sequoias’ needs as well as other organisms in the ecosystem. Public education received a makeover through new signs and interpretive exhibits focused on the natural and human history of the grove.
Navigation to the giant sequoias has been reimagined. Upon reopening, visitors will now park at an “arrival plaza” located near the South Gate. Here they can expect an introduction to the giant sequoias, a Yosemite Conservancy Depot store and access to hydration stations & restrooms. There will be shuttles driving up to the trees and even a new hiking trail straight from the plaza to the grove. It is thrilling to hear this project is nearing completion and will soon be ready to better serve the natural environment in addition to eager park visitors. Click here for additional ways to get to Mariposa Grove.
The Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias is located at the end of Mariposa Grove Road, off of Highway 41, shortly after the park’s south entrance.
Yosemite National Park is home to giant sequoia trees throughout the park. To find these giant sequoias outside of Mariposa Grove, check out these additional locations:
Merced Grove– Merced Grove is the most secluded of the three sequoia groves in Yosemite. The trail follows an old road that curves down into the Merced Grove and offers spectacular flower blossoms in the spring. Be sure to pack water as it is not readily available on this trail.
Tuolumne Grove– Tuolumne Grove is located on the Tioga Road, just east of Crane Flat. The giant sequoias are visible just one mile into this hike.
After three long years and $20 million each from the National Park Service and Yosemite Conservancy donors, Mariposa Grove gloriously reopened to the public on June 15, 2018.
Legend has it that renowned Yosemite Ranger Carl Sharsmith was once asked by a visitor, “If you had only one day in Yosemite, what would you do?” The veteran ranger and Yosemite-lover looked solemn and replied “Madam, if I only had one day in Yosemite I’d sit by the Merced River and cry.”
After extensive restoration, the Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias will reopen to Yosemite Visitors on June 15, 2018. The privilege to access this remarkable place will be regained along with the opportunity to enjoy all the improvements!