National Park Service, Yosemite, Current Conditions says:

Big Oak Flat Road (Hwy 120) closed into Yosemite Valley; no access to Yosemite Valley via Hwy 120

Alert 1 , Severity ,closure ,, Big Oak Flat Road (Hwy 120) closed into Yosemite Valley; no access to Yosemite Valley via Hwy 120.

Big Oak Flat Road is closed between Crane Flat and Foresta due to storm damage. There is no access via Hwy 120 to Yosemite Valley from Buck Meadows, Groveland, or Sonora. From Groveland, use Hwy 49 to Mariposa, then Hwy 140 to Yosemite Valley.

I called the Concierge Desk at the Ahwahnee and all they could tell me was that

part of the road fell off between the Valley and the Crane Flat gas station. There is no estimate as to when 120 will be reopened.

Does anyone have more details as to what happened?

2 Answers 2


A dormant spring started up again due to the winter's snow and rain underneath the road and loosened up the underlying soil to the point that the road slid downhill.

An underground seasonal spring that began flowing again after being dormant for years was the cause of a 200-foot long fissure resembling an earthquake fault that closed U.S. Highway 120 into Yosemite Valley in February.


Significant rain and snow this winter saturated the soil under the road, causing it to slide downhill, officials said. More than 200 feet of roadway has been damaged as the road continues to slide.



Update: Route 120 into Yosemite Valley opened on May 1, 2017. The road crews were still putting finishing touches on the area of the collapse a week later, with short delays.

Delays at the el Portal entrance to Yosemite were in the one to two hour range on the last weekend in April. A ranger described the 120 closure as "a disaster for the el Portal entrance."

Extensive road repair is going on in the Valley, with a maze of detours and lane closures. A flashing light says

Your GPS is wrong!

Follow the detour signs!

Maintenance cuts, according to a ranger, are hitting Yosemite hard. One visible sign: roadside litter is obvious within the park. The waterfalls are spectacular, partly because the snow is melting so rapidly. (Source: Personal Observation by ab2.)

  • 2
    Good grief - even the funding for Yosemite is being cut? The richest nation in the world can't look after the jewel in its crown? What a damn shame... May 18, 2017 at 21:31

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