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Yosemite Finally Shows Off Its Snowy Side on the First Day of Spring

Today's exercise in irony: Spring officially began today in the Northern Hemisphere at 1:14 a.m. (EDT), the exact arrival of the vernal equinox—and Yosemite is covered by its thickest snow cover of the year.

Yosemite in snowIt's been an odd, largely snow-free winter in many places, including Yosemite National Park. In January we wrote about local climbers ascending a snow-free Half Dome on a day trip on Jan. 4—a meteorologically surreal event for the customarily snowy Sierra Nevada.

Then this past weekend a storm rushed in that reportedly dropped up to 10 feet of snow in some higher elevation. Crazy.

Yosemite in winterThus today, on the first day of spring, we direct your attention to park webcams maintained by the nonprofit Yosemite Conservancy so you can check out some traditional winter scenes in the park, just 3-4 months late. It stays light until 7 p.m. (PDT) in the West, so if you're reading this post prior to that hour, give a click and take a look.

If this gets you thinking about making a visit to Yosemite, REI Adventures offers 4 guided trips at the park: lodge hiking, backpacking, backpacking with a Half Dome climb and a volunteer vacation. I'm usually a do-it-yourselfer type, but guided trips can be a pretty attractive, no-hassle alternative.

Snow in Yosemite is gorgeous, and it's nice the storm bumped up some pretty low snow reserves. But the official arrival of spring gets me thinking about spending more time on trails. You, too?

Photo below taken this weekend by park videographer Yosemite Steve (Steven Bumgardner), creator of the highly worthwhile Yosemite Nature Notes short-film series.

Posted on at 5:20 PM

Tagged: REI Adventures, Travel, Yosemite and national parks

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