Local

Merced River in Yosemite is rising again. Flooding expected Wednesday

The Pohono Bridge over the Merced River in Yosemite National Park is seen in an undated file photo.
The Pohono Bridge over the Merced River in Yosemite National Park is seen in an undated file photo.

The Merced River in Yosemite National Park is rising again and expected to reach flood stage early Wednesday.

The National Weather Service Hanford issued a flood warning Tuesday morning. The warning is focused around the Pohono Bridge in the park.

Last week, the park had minor flooding from the Merced River as rising temperatures brought melted snow from a big Sierra snowpack rushing into park streams and the Merced River.

The river is considered at flood stage when its depth reaches 10 feet. That’s expected to be reach early Wednesday and last through early Thursday. The level is forecast to peak at 10.3 feet.

The Merced River reached about 11.7 feet early Friday but didn’t cause damage, said Christine Riley, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Hanford.

At 9.5 feet, portions of Lower Pines Campground become flooded and at 10 feet, the western portion of North Pines Campground can begin to flood, she said.

At 10.5 feet, there are impacts on the swinging bridge near Chapel Meadow can go under water along with some access roads, Riley said.

The flooding didn’t cause significant damage last week, Riley said. “We coordinate very closely with Yosemite so they can minimize the effects of it,” she said.

Officials are warning park visitors to avoid the swift-moving water because the water temperature is in the 40s and highly dangerous, Riley said.

Marc Benjamin: 559-441-6166, @beebenjamin

  Comments