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"Yosemite in Winter"
So many of the usual wonderful sights in Yosemite Valley take on a completely different aspect under a mantle of snow and ice.

Bridalveil Fall and Cloud's Rest were coated with ice, looking most unlike their summer selves. The furrows on the northern slope of Cloud's Rest are avalanche chutes.

"Yosemite in Winter" is definitely something to visit during the winter holiday season.

Your hiking and driving options are limited in Yosemite in the wintertime, but the crowds are much smaller. The low winter light and snowy vistas are photographer-friendly, there are lots of winter activities to keep you happy, and lodging is much easier to find. For various reasons - but especially that one about the crowds - Yosemite can be more fun in winter than summer.

The Tioga Road, which reaches 10,000 feet (3,000 meters) in elevation, is closed altogether in the winter, and the Glacier Point Road, with an average elevation of around 7,000 feet (2,100 meters), is closed to automobiles fives miles in (at Badger Pass, Yosemite's alpine ski area) and transformed into a cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trail.

Yosemite Valley, though, at an altitude of 4,000 feet (1,220 meters), is open year round and fairly temperate by High Sierra standards. It gets enough snow to spawn the occasional Calvinesque snowman, but not so much that you would practically use showshoes or skis (or not often and not for long, at any rate).

The Sierra snow gods typically don't get really busy until January; chances are about 50-50 that you'll have enough precipitation for snow activities in December, and it's not unheard of for you to have to postpone your snow jones until late January.
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