Yosemite National Park

Sierra Adventurers, the Tioga Road Is Set to Reopen

The meadow-marvelous route, which wends through some of the higher parts of Yosemite National Park, will debut ahead of Memorial Day Weekend.

Peter Unger

What to Know

  • The higher elevation pass is one of Yosemite National Park's iconic thoroughfares
  • Reopens to vehicles on Thursday, May 27 at 8 a.m. (tentative reopening date and time); reservations are required for Yosemite National Park
  • The road opened to bikes on May 23

DESTINATIONS AND POINTS OF INTERESTS? It can seem as though super-defined, dot-on-the-map, here's-where-you-stop places get all the glory when it comes to major praise, tales of picturesque beauty, and gotta-see-it grandeur. We're often advised to see this one superb spot, or commune with this one epic place, and while we're excited to reach the final point that our friends or favorite travel books have rhapsodized about, we sometimes don't give too much thought to the road we're traveling to get there. But roads, of course, can possess that same splendor, the sort of magic we've come to expect from iconic, situated-in-one-location attractions. You probably have...

A ROAD YOU RHAPSODIZE ABOUT... right here in the Golden State, It might be the ocean-awesome Highway 1, or the Eastern Sierra's big-sky'd Highway 395, or it could be Tioga Road, the beyond-pretty pass that wends by some of Yosemite National Park's greatest granite wonders and mellowest meadows. But unlike so many of California's roads, the Tioga is closed, due to impressive amounts of snow, for much of the year. But the amazing crews recently finished clearing the cold stuff and the good news is here: The "full-length" of Tioga Road reopens to vehicles, tentatively, at 8 a.m. on May 27 (bikes returned on May 23). Important? You'll need a reservation to enter Yosemite National Park through Sept. 30, 2021, with some exceptions (like lodging reservations).

ALSO GOOD TO KNOW? "Be prepared for a long ride with many hills and major elevation gain/loss" advises the National Park Service. In fact, reading up on this one-of-a-kind road before you go is a must, so take time to do so now. The Tioga Road traditionally closes around November each year, so do keep that in mind as you plan your Sierra idyll. Eager for an interesting glance back at the last four decades? This page, which lists all of Tioga Road's opening and closing dates since 1980.

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