Yosemite to drop reservation requirements in November

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Starting November 1, you won't need a reservation to get into Yosemite National Park.

The park announced Tuesday it is ending the day use reservation system that officials put in place to reduce summer crowds during the coronavirus pandemic.

The park was closed for about three months because of the pandemic.

When it reopened in June, rangers limited the number of cars allowed to enter each day to 1,700. That’s about half the traffic the park usually sees during the tourist-heavy summer season.

"We would like to extend our gratitude to all park visitors and our local communities for their support of our modified operations this summer," said Yosemite National Park Acting Superintendent Cicely Muldoon. "With the health and safety of park visitors and employees guiding our decisions, we were thrilled to welcome thousands of visitors to Yosemite this summer."

Officials said the decision to lift restrictions was made based on the latest guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and state and local public health officials.

The park typically sees smaller crowds in the fall.

Mariposa County is one of only three in the state to be in the "minimal" COVID-19 risk tier.

Reservations will still be required through the month of October.

Park officials said visitors should still follow CDC guidance including social distancing, wearing a mask around other people, frequent hand washing and, most importantly, to stay home if you feel sick.

Yosemite closed to visitors earlier this month because of poor air quality due to smoke from the Creek Fire.