drawbacks of visiting in december. 2 roads inside Yosemite National Park closing Thursday in anticipation of snow. Best to take this hike early morning or late afternoon as it's just very hot in summer. ... RELATED: Lake Tahoe to get up to a foot of fresh snow this weekend, warm streak to end in Sierra. Yosemite Valley Elevation: 4,000 feet (1,220 meters) Total Elevation Gain: 2,700 feet (820 meters) from Yosemite Valley; 1,700 feet (520 meters) descent from Tioga Road Snow Creek trailhead Why hike the Snow Creek Trail? This is a classic Yosemite combination of lung-busting hike and iconic views. Begin the trip in Yosemite’s high country camping at the base of Mount Hoffman (10,850’) along the shore of May Lake. You'll find groomed trails perfect for cross-country skiers, chairlifts that take Alpine skiers to the top of the runs in minutes, a challenging terrain park for snowboarders and skiers to test their limits, and a tubing area where the whole family can experience the thrills together. The Crane Flat Campground near the junction of the Big Oak Flat and Tioga roads undergoes a transformation in winter, turning into a beloved snow-play area. Badger Pass Ski Area has it all, and makes it easy—from getting here to renting equipment to taking lessons. The Gem Lake Loop is located in Emigrant Wilderness, which borders Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park, and offers incredible views, smaller crowds, and diverse terrain. Crane Flat. Highlights: This family-friendly backpacking trip includes some of the most iconic Yosemite vistas, coupled with fun and relatively mellow hiking. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until September. Yosemite Snow Play Areas. The biggest drawback to visiting in December is the closures of Tioga Road and Glacier Point Road typically closing in November, and opening in late-May. There are a bunch of winter sports on offer in Yosemite National Park, including cross-country skiing, sledding, and ice skating, but it’s also a great time of year to sightsee. Yosemite’s even more beautiful when there’s snow on the ground in California – we’re talking snow-covered peaks and frozen waterfalls. Sledding and Tubing in Yosemite National Park. An ascent of Mount Hoffman is an option for those looking for extra mileage and scenery. Mirror Lake in August is a dry trail, easy hike and at the end of the "lake" (also dry in August) is a stream you can cool off in, with a spectacular view of Half Dome up close. Mirror Lake, Snow Creek, and Upper Yosemite Falls Loop is a 15.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Yosemite Valley, California that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. Highway 140 that runs through the Valley is open year-round, but may have snow chain restrictions. Yosemite Winter Snow – Tuolumne River Tuolumne River in Snow, Near Evergreen Road Without a doubt, the South Fork of the Tuolumne River near the 120 park entrance is a great place to shoot in the snow. There are two excellent destinations for all-ages snow play in and around Yosemite National Park. The snow in Yosemite is a double-edged sword, making it beautiful, but also closing many of the roads. Yosemite's Badger Pass Ski, Tube and Snowboard Area offers gentle, kid-friendly slopes for snow tubing along with its downhill and cross-country ski opportunities.. A free snow play area is located on the Big Oak Flat Road to the west of Yosemite Valley on Highway 120. 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