FRESNO, California -- Amid a flash flood watch, Yosemite National Park will be closing all highways in and out of the park at 5 p.m. on Thursday. Visitor who are leaving the park are urged to leave by 4 p.m.
Here are the road closures:
- HWY 140 from El Portal to Yosemite Valley will be closed at Park Line in El Portal.
- Wawona Road (HWY 41 North) from Wawona to Yosemite Valley will be closed at Chinquapin (access to Yosemite West provided)
- Northside drive exiting Yosemite Valley will be closed at Yosemite Valley Lodge for outbound traffic
- Big Oak Flat Road/HWY 120 will be closed at the Foresta junction, no entrance to Yosemite Valley from highway 120.
With the National Weather Service predicting two to four inches of rain through Friday, and some areas as much as six inches of rain, authorities say the Merced River could raise as much as 14 feet -- several feet above flood stage.
Park officials say they will reevaluate the roads for re-opening on Friday.
When traveling, be watchful of other hazards that could include mud and debris flow, falling trees, and rock fall. Fire burn scar areas may see elevated threat of debris flows during heavy rain as well.