Snow and Water Levels, May 14 2006; Dogwoods Blooming

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I hope to get out soon and see more of the high country, but at 6000 feet there are only a few patches of snow here and there right now, though many trails are deep underwater. I was talking to someone who had hiked the Merced Lake Trail a couple of days ago and he reported that there wasn't much snow on the trail or even at the lake on the trail side of the lake, but that he was occasionally up to his knees in water. Since then, the rivers have seemed to rise a bit more, but unless we get some precipitation, it should be peaking soon.

The best way to get a sense of snow levels in this season is to check in on the Tioga Pass snowplowing progress page which reports that they are encountering snow depths of 10 feet on the Tioga Pass Road and five feet on Glacier Point Road. Crews were in the White Wolf area on Hwy 120 and near Bridalveil Creek on Glacier Point Road on May 11.

Meanwhile the dogwoods are in full bloom in the Valley and starting to come out up to about 5000 feet. The flowers are out at 6000 feet, but still somewhat green. There should be nice dogwood viewing for a while yet.

Finally, in the Valley, the Merced seems to be nearing capacity and spilling over the banks in the usual spots, but so far the water is well below the road in the area just before El Cap and at Bridal Veil, two of the common flood spots.

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