Restoring Lyell Canyon2018-06-27T12:45:04+00:00

Project Description

RESTORING THE JMT AT LYELL CANYON

OBJECTIVE: The Foundation would like to support the effort in Lyell Canyon to relocate the John Muir Trail away from the bank of the river to an alignment closer to the southern forest and to restore the area to its natural condition.

RESTORING THE JMT AT LYELL CANYON

OBJECTIVE: The Foundation would like to support the effort in Lyell Canyon to relocate the John Muir Trail away from the bank of the river and restore the area to its natural condition.

Perhaps the most frequently traveled segment of the John Muir Trail is the path from Tuolomne Meadows alongside the Lyell Fork of the Tuolomne River toward Donohue Pass. The JMT runs adjacent to the river through the length of Lyell Canyon, a distance of roughly 9 miles. Over many decades of use by hikers and pack animals, the trail and the surrounding meadow have taken a beating.

The National Park Service with the support of the Yosemite Conservancy has begun a comprehensive restoration of the JMT and canyon for its full length. The effort is entering its fourth year of work, with three years remaining. Part of the strategy is to move the JMT from the bank of the Lyell Fork to an alignment near the edge of the southern forest line and restore the old trail and the meadow to its natural state. The effort is budgeted at $190,000 annually.

The meadow along the Lyell Fork of the Tuolomne River looking east the JMT’s old track (on left) with the same area after restoration (on right), August 2017.

The Foundation fully supports this effort and would like to fundraise for the final three years of work, a total of $570,000. If further funds allow, the Foundation would also like to work with the NPS and the Yosemite Conservancy to assess other significant impacts to the network of trails and the surrounding wilderness around Tuolomne Meadows, a major entry point to the John Muir Trail. Help us do this work! DONATE TODAY!

Lyell Fork of the Tuolomne River, Donohue Pass reflected in the waters. ©2009 John Dittli

The National Park Service with the support of the Yosemite Conservancy has begun a comprehensive restoration of the JMT at Lyell Canyon for its full length. The effort is budgeted at $190,000 annually. The Foundation is fundraising for the final three years of work, a total of $570,000.

If further funds allow, the Foundation would also like to work with the NPS and the Yosemite Conservancy to assess other significant impacts to the network of trails and the surrounding wilderness around Tuolomne Meadows, a major entry point to the John Muir Trail.

The meadow along the Lyell Fork of the Tuolomne River looking east the JMT’s old track (on left) with the same area after restoration (on right), August 2017.