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Entrance to Yosemite National Park still free as lawmakers work to end shutdown

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Entrances to Yosemite and Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks remained open and free to motorists entering the parks on Monday morning. By the afternoon, Congress reached a deal to end the federal government shutdown and President Trump pledged to sign such a plan.

The National Park Service was waiting on direction to resume operations once a funding bill is signed. It’s unknown when the entrance gates will be staffed – not expected before Tuesday, at the earliest.

Yosemite’s concessionaire, Yosemite Hospitality, a subsidiary of Aramark, and Sequoia’s concessionaire, Delaware North, previously announced hospitality services, such as lodging and dining in the parks provided by the companies, were continuing during the shutdown.

The websites for Yosemite and Sequoia & Kings Canyon reported Monday: “Be aware that there will be no National Park Service-provided visitor services, including restrooms, trash collection, facilities, or road maintenance.”

Road closures were reported within Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks due to winter conditions, although entrance gates remained open.

Park Service officials on Friday said that “national parks will remain as accessible as possible while still following all applicable laws and procedures.”

“The parks may choose to restrict access to some areas if there is a high risk of avalanche or it’s a common spot for injuries since there will not be a regular patrol of the area,” officials said. “Additionally, sensitive cultural areas on all public land may see restricted access to protect the artifacts and objects.”

Lemoore Naval Air Station

At Lemoore Naval Air Station, civilian employees were not working due to the shutdown.

“Due to a lapse in federal funding, employees have been furloughed,” states an automatic email reply by public affairs officer Lydia Ellen Bock, who is among those furloughed.

Active duty military are exempt from the furlough. Thousands of full-time military and civilian employees work at the base.

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