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Yosemite National Park: Spring starts with big snow, skiing -- and some roadwork delays

March 31, 2011|By Mary Forgione | Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger
(Chris Falkenstein/DNC…)

If you're expecting spring in Yosemite National Park, be patient ... very patient. Snowstorms that downed power lines, blocked roadways and caused a rare closure  of the park for several days last week have left plenty of white stuff, and I don't mean dogwood blossoms.

PHOTOS: Yosemite's chilly scenes of spring

The Badger Pass Ski Area inside the park reopened to skiers, snowboarders and snowshoers Wednesday with a whopping 10 feet of fresh snow. The resort will host a Spring Fest starting at 9 a.m. Saturday. Among the day's events will be free-style competitions, slalom races, a costume contest and something called the World Cup Dummy Race, in which competitors build "gravity-propelled" dummies on skis or snowboards to send hurtling down the slopes. The ski area will remain open Sunday and then close for the season.

In a different part of the park, roadwork starting Monday is expected to cause  delays up to 30 minutes for those entering from the south, according to a news release. Work to stabilize a rock slide area on El Portal Road (California 140) will begin about a quarter-mile east of the Arch Rock Entrance to the park. The delays are expected to last through April 23. For updates, go to Yosemite's website page on road work updates or call (209) 372-0200 and press "1" twice for recorded information.

As for the dogwood trees, park spokeswoman Kari Cobb said in an email that she has noticed a few small buds that could pop in a few weeks. Check out the snow levels from webcams pointed at various points in the park.

For a look at what awaits visitors when spring finally comes to Yosemite, go to this photo gallery from Los Angeles Times shooter Mark Boster, who has documented the park in all four seasons.

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