Aug. 31 is Free Fishing Day in California

Get your fishing pole ready!

Free Fishing Day will be Aug. 31 in California, according to the Department of Fish and Wildlife.

“Free Fishing Day is a great opportunity for experienced anglers to share their love of the sport with someone who’s never tried it,” said CDFW Director Charlton H. Bonham.

All fishing regulations, such a bag and size limits, gear restrictions, report card requirements, fishing hours and stream closures remain in effect on Free Fishing Day.

Department officials say every angler must have appropriate report card if they are fishing steelhead or sturgeon anywhere in the state, or salmon in the Smith and Klamath-Trinity river systems.

If you need some ideas about where to fish, take a look at CDFW’s fishing guide.

A basic annual fishing license currently costs $49.94, while a one-day license cost $16.20.

Copyright © 2019 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved. Thursday, August 22, 2019 10:22AM

Pink ‘watermelon snow’ found in Yosemite’s high country

If you have been hiking Yosemite’s high country recently and noticed the snow is pink, you don’t need a new eyeglass prescription.

Some snow that lasts through the summer at elevations above 9,500 feet has a slightly reddish or pink color. It’s sometimes called “watermelon snow.” Yosemite rangers explained what causes it…”The color comes from a cold-loving algae, Chlamydomonas nivalis, that thrives in freezing temperatures and liquid water, living on the snow. This algae is typically green but contains a special red pigment called a carotenoid that acts as a protective barrier, shielding the algae’s chlorophyll. Since chlorophyll is necessary for its survival, it uses this natural type of sunscreen to protect itself from too much heat and damaging UV radiation.”

If you step on the pink snow and compress it, the snow turns a deeper hue of red

Colored snow has been observed for centuries going back to Aristotle’s time. In 1818, a British expedition searching for a Northwest Passage discovered blood-red snow streaking the white cliffs of the northwest coast of Greenland, according to the London Times. When melted to a liquid, the snow was “so dark a red as to resemble red port wine.”

MORE: What to do with children on your first visit to Yosemite

For years, scientists thought mineral deposits or runoff caused the coloration. The algae bloom explanation is a relatively recent development.

Frank Zappa reminded us not to eat yellow snow. The same goes for watermelon snow, even though it sounds tasty.

“Although it probably isn’t harmful to eat, we certainly don’t recommend it,” Scott Gediman, public affairs officer for Yosemite National Park, told TODAY.

Mike Moffitt is an SFGATE Digital Reporter. Email: Twitter: @Mike_at_SFGate.

Valentines day in Yosemite National Park

The Groveland, California, Highway 120 route to Yosemite National Park is one of the most beautiful roads and romantic routes to venture in California. Our vacation home is great place to take your loved one or family for Valentine’s Day. Yosemite Inn at Pine Mountain Lake offers a beautiful quiet home, 30 minutes from the Park gate.

Yosemite is also the perfect place for romantic hikes through woods and meadows. February is a great time to see Yosemite’s many waterfalls flow freely as the snow begins to melt. Everywhere you look you’ll find budding flowers, flowing waters, and wildlife animals.

On your way to or from Yosemite National Park on Highway 120, you’ll arrive in Groveland, one of the County’s Gold Rush towns. Try to stay out of trouble though; this town was once named “Garrotte” for the area’s swift and harsh justice from a large oak tree. Once, Groveland offered miners exceptional gold discoveries, but in 1914 the focus switched to water, and the town was chosen to be the construction headquarters for the Hetch Hetchy Water Project—the water supply for San Francisco.

Enjoy your Valentine’s Dinner in house (grocery store is within walking distance from home) or make reservations at the Iron Door Saloon Steak House.

Today Groveland is a must-stop town where visitors find respite in historic hotels, B&B’s and vacation rentals. Beautiful Pine Mountain Lake offers golfing, dining, horseback riding, water sports and an airport (E45).

Make your reservations today for a romantic 2019 Valentine’s Day. Call 1-209-962-0500 to reserve your date!

YARTS 2019 Free Day Schedule

May 26 & 27, 2019 (Memorial Day Weekend) – Hwy 140 (from Merced), Hwy 41 (from Fresno), Hwy 120 (from Sonora)
July 4, 2019 (Independence Day) – all corridors
August 25, 2019 (National Park Service Birthday) – all corridors
September 21, 2019 (National Public Lands Day-Observed) – Hwy 140 (Merced, Mariposa, El Portal); Hwy 120 (Sonora, Groveland); Hwy 395/120 (Mammoth Lakes, Lee Vining, Tuolumne Meadows)

Big Oak Flat Yosemite Entrance and Highway 120 Re-Opens through Tioga Pass.

Courtesy of the Tuolumne County Visitors Bureau
The National Park Service announced today, August 7, 2018 that they have opened Highway 120 at the Big Oak Flat Yosemite Park entrance through Yosemite National Park. The National Park Service urges motorist to drive safely in the area, as firefighters are still working in the area. Hodgdon Meadow, Crane Flat, and Tamarack Flat Campgrounds remain closed. Yosemite Valley, Wawona, Mariposa Grove, Glacier Point, Hetch Hetchy, and Merced Grove remain closed due to health and safety issues and firefighter operations related to the Ferguson Fire. The northern portion of Yosemite, including the Tuolumne Grove of Giant Sequoias, Tuolumne Meadows, and other areas along the Highway 120/Tioga Road will remain open.
Highway 108/Sonora Pass remains closed at the Eagle Meadows point to the Tuolumne/Mono County line due to the Donnell Fire.
Visitors who need assistance for finding lodging or making alternative plans, can visit our website,, stop by, or call any of the Tuolumne County Visitors Centers for assistance:
   Chinese Camp:13785 Highway 49/120 Chinese Camp, Ca 95309. (209)984-4636.
There could be smoky conditions due to the Ferguson Fire and the Donnell Fire, which could be heavy at times and variable throughout our area. During times of heavy smoke, visitors should be prepared to limit any strenuous outdoor activity.
Please let us know if there are any questions. Thank you.
Tuolumne County Visitors Bureau

Yosemite National Park Announces that Tioga Road Open for the 2018 Season

Yosemite News Release
May 17, 2018
For Immediate Release
Media Contacts:
Scott Gediman  209-372-0248
Jamie Richards 209-372-0529
Yosemite National Park Announces that Tioga Road Will Open for the Season on Monday, May 21, 2018
Yosemite National Park Announces that Tioga Road (Highway 120 East) will open for the season to all vehicular traffic on Monday, May 21, 2018 at 9:00 am.
There will be limited services available along Tioga Road. All campgrounds along Tioga Road remain closed. There is no anticipated opening date for the Tuolumne Meadows store and the Tuolumne Meadows Visitor Center. There is no gasoline available along Tioga Road. The closest gas station is located at Crane Flat.
Yosemite National Park is open year-round. All motorists should drive with caution and be aware of possible hazards in the roadway, including rocks, debris, and water. Tioga Road may be impacted by incoming storm activity, including snow and icy driving conditions, over the next week. Tioga Road may temporarily close due to weather and unsafe driving conditions at any time. Tioga Road is a seasonal road through Yosemite National Park, typically open from late spring to early fall.
For updated 24-hour road and weather conditions for Yosemite National Park, please call 209-372-0200.

Yosemite News Release April 24, 2018 For Immediate Release

Yosemite Highway 120 Chamber of Commerce | Hours: Tues – Thurs 1 – 5 P.M.18687 Main St. Suite CP.O. Box 1263,
Groveland, CA 95321
Yosemite News Release
April 24, 2018
For Immediate Release
Media Contacts:
Scott Gediman 209-372-0248
Jamie Richards 209-372-0529
Glacier Point Road in Yosemite National Park to Open on
Saturday, April 28, 2018
Yosemite National Park announces the Glacier Point Road will open to all vehicular traffic at 9:00 am on Saturday, April 28, 2018.
There will be limited visitor services available at Glacier Point. There is no projected opening date for the Glacier Point store or the Bridalveil Creek Campground.
The Four Mile Trail is open from Yosemite Valley to Glacier Point.
Visitors are encouraged to slow down and drive with caution along all park roads, as bears and other wildlife may be present on or near the roadway. Drivers should be aware of potential hazards in the road, including wet and icy conditions or debris in the roadway.
For updated 24-hour road and weather conditions for Yosemite National Park, please call 209-372-0200, press 1 and press 1 again.

Horsetail Fall Event February 12-26, 2018

Yosemite News Release
February 1, 2018
For Immediate Release
Media Contacts:
Scott Gediman 209-372-0248
Jamie Richards 209-372-0529
Yosemite National Park Announces Pilot Program for
Horsetail Fall Event February 12-26, 2018
 New program to improve visitor experience and reduce traffic congestion
Yosemite National Park announces a new program for the Horsetail Fall event taking place from February 12-26, 2018. This program has been created to improve the overall visitor experience to view the natural Horsetail Fall phenomenon that occurs each year in mid-February when the sun’s light at sunset causes the waterfall on El Capitan to glow like it is on fire.
Over the past several years, the popularity of viewing the Horsetail Fall phenomenon has grown significantly with thousands of visitors coming to the park to experience this unique event. Growth in the popularity of viewing Horsetail Fall has contributed to major traffic jams with over 1000 vehicles at one time and has created significant safety issues between pedestrians and motorists.
Based on visitor feedback on traffic and concerns over pedestrian safety, Yosemite National Park is trying a new approach to managing traffic for the Horsetail Fall phenomenon. This year, Yosemite National Park is working in partnership with The Ansel Adams Gallery, Yosemite Conservancy, and Yosemite Hospitality to ensure public access and manage vehicles in the viewing area.
During the event, Yosemite National Park is creating an event zone inside Yosemite Valley, from the Yosemite Valley Lodge to El Capitan Crossover. Visitors will be able to enter the event zone and view Horsetail Fall by walking from El Capitan Meadow or the Yosemite Falls Parking Area, taking a naturalist-guided tour, or picking up a permit to park inside the event zone. Within the event zone, the right-hand lane of the road will be converted to event parking for 300 vehicles. To park within the event zone, free parking permits will be required. 250 free permits will be available through online reservations and 50 permits will be issued on a first come, first served basis each day.
Free parking reservations for each day of the event will be available online, beginning on Saturday February 3, 2018 at 9:00 am PST. To book a parking reservation, visit 250 parking reservations (a parking reservation is good for a carload of passengers) will be available for each day of the event through EventBrite. 50 first come, first served permits will be available each day from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm at The Ansel Adams Gallery in Yosemite Village.
All online reservation holders will need to bring a printed copy of their reservation confirmation in person to The Ansel Adams Gallery between 9:00 am to 3:00 pmto pick up their vehicle Parking Permit for the event on the day of the reservation. Any permits not picked up by 3:00 pm will be forfeited.
Important Tips for Planning Your Visit to the Horsetail Fall Event:
·         Visitors interested in walking to the event site are encouraged to park in the Yosemite Falls Day Parking Area, park at El Capitan Meadow, or ride the free park shuttle to Shuttle Stop #7 and walk into the event site approximately 1.2 miles one way.
·         Yosemite Hospitality, Inc., the park’s primary concessioner, will be offering naturalist-guided tours each day for a fee to the Horsetail Fall Event. To learn more please visit
·         To reduce traffic congestion in the event zone and to ensure easy visitor access to Yosemite Valley, the park will convert Southside Drive to two-way traffic from El Capitan Crossover to Sentinel Bridge. No roadside parking will be permitted while two-way traffic is in place for the safety of both pedestrians and motorists.
·         On Northside Drive, the left-hand traffic lane in the event zone will remain open as an exit route for YARTS buses, commercial buses, and other vehicles exceeding 25′ in length.
·         Visitors who plan to get to Yosemite Valley using the Yosemite Area Regional Transit System (YARTS) should review the YARTS schedule at to make sure that you do not miss the last bus of the day. The closest YARTS stop to the event is located at Yosemite Valley Lodge. YARTS buses will not be picking up visitors in the event zone.
“The Horsetail Fall Event Pilot Program is one of the many initiatives Yosemite National Park is piloting to address traffic congestion and visitor safety in the park,” stated Acting Superintendent Chip Jenkins. “We are continuously working to test new strategies to provide a quality experience for visitors to Yosemite National Park.”
This Pilot Program is part of a year-round effort to evaluate traffic and parking management to improve the visitor experience. After the Pilot Program for Horsetail Fall is completed this year, the park will evaluate its effectiveness and make adjustments for coming years.
For updated 24-hour road and weather conditions for Yosemite National Park, please call 209-372-0200 and press 1.