Yosemite National Park Yosemite National Park

Will The "Firefall" show in Yosemite this winter?

Yosemite National Park, February 2016 – With the heavy snow pack this season and the warm stretch we have felt in February to date,  the waterfalls in Yosemite National Park are putting on their typical awesome show of power and elegance in Yosemite Valley. Which begs the question, will the Yosemite “Natural Firefall” show its glorious wonder this February? Horsetail Fall is visible from multiple viewpoints in Yosemite Valley, yet each season there are multiple factors that must occur for the Firefall to actually glow.  Now don’t be confused here, we are not discussing the original Firefall that
Horsetail Fall is visible from multiple viewpoints in Yosemite Valley, yet each season there are multiple factors that must occur for the Firefall to actually glow.  Now don’t be confused here, we are not discussing the original Firefall that is missed and discussed often in Yosemite. That Man made FireFall was off Glacier Point and was a treasure and tradition that is lost to this generation. A final ceremonial Firefall was held on Jan 25, 1968. According to a National Park Service press release: That man made Firefall only adds to the legend of Yosemite.
However Each year in late February, nature provides an opportunity to see a true natural wonder via the Horsetail Fall. Each year in the final two weeks of February hundreds of spectators and photographers meet in Yosemite to witness this amazing event. But the Yosemite Firefall can be a bit finicky. Although Horsetail Fall is visible from multiple viewpoints in Yosemite Valley, several factors must converge to trigger the Firefall. If conditions are not perfect, the Yosemite Firefall will not glow.

  1. Is the Water Flowing?
  2. Is the Weather Warm enough to keep water flowing all day and into the evening?
  3. Is the Sky Clear?

These are the magic questions we ask again this year.  We have the snow pack, and the recent weather has the water falling in Yosemite Valley.  So how does the weather look?
Starting Wednesday, Feb 17th Yosemite is looking for Rain and Snow for two days as the next Storm comes through the Sierra. But then by Saturday, we are looking at scattered clouds and the possibility on Sunday to be a beautiful clear day.  So there is a chance this year at the Firefall will glow.

If you want to catch this phenomenon the most convenient, and frequently shot view of Horsetail Fall is at the El Capitan picnic area, approximately 1.7 miles past Yosemite Lodge at the Falls on Northside Drive.  However professional Photographers will tell you that the most-unique shots are often shot elsewhere.

Just look for places where the falls will be backlit by the setting sun, such as along the river, or along the rim.
Says local professional photographer, Nancy Robbins

Celebration National Parks Anniversary Year. Check the weather before you go. And we wish you the best in trying to catch a glimpse of this Natural phenomenon.

About the author

Charlie REC magazine - Charlie Pankey ~ Publisher

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