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Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

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Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby rlown » Fri Dec 11, 2015 11:33 am

I was kind of getting ticked off that Yose didn't update the closure page for Tioga:

http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/tiogaopen.htm

So I sent them a gentle email and they updated the page, as it's been "temporarily" closed for a few weeks in their alerts section.
Closed date was set at Nov 1st.

I miss the camera up at the Tioga entry station, but I watch this page to see how the storms progress (esp, snow depth):
http://cdec.water.ca.gov/cgi-progs/queryF?TES



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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby maverick » Fri Dec 11, 2015 3:20 pm

I miss the camera up at the Tioga entry station


Me too.
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby MichaelRPetrick » Thu Feb 18, 2016 7:39 pm

I want to do Lyell as a 3-day 2 night trip, as early in the season as is feasible. A few questions about relevant roads:

-Does TM ever open before Tioga, via Western access, e.g. they can't plow near Lee Vining due to rockslides?

-IIRC, the last place plowed on 120 inside the park is usually around Olmstead Pt. If so, is TM ever accessible from Lee Vining before it's accessible from the West?

Thanks!

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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby rlown » Thu Feb 18, 2016 7:47 pm

The funny part. Outside the park from the East is generally plowed first right to the pass because that is CalTrans, unless massive slides occurred. Gates through the park are still locked.

The park doesn't open 120 through the park until they clear 120 and all the side roads.

Best to wait and watch and know that they start plowing on April 15th and then depending on snow load, it'll open.. sometime..

We need the snow. Dana Meadows has 80" of snow as of now and 20 of WC.. very nice. http://cdec.water.ca.gov/cgi-progs/queryF?DAN
Last edited by rlown on Fri Feb 19, 2016 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby MichaelRPetrick » Fri Feb 19, 2016 11:02 am

That certainly makes sense from an organizational sense for the NPS. Better to have everything ready to go rather at once rather than try to open up TM before both sides of the road are open.

I have a rough model that forecasts the opening date given snowpack on April 1st. The model is only calibrated down to about a three-weekend timespan, so I guess I'll need to look for partners who can take Fridays off on short notice.

Thanks rlown!
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby markskor » Fri Feb 19, 2016 11:06 am

MichaelRPetrick wrote:I have a rough model that forecasts the opening date given snow-pack on April 1st.

This year, thinking probably late May?
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby MichaelRPetrick » Fri Feb 19, 2016 12:10 pm

markskor wrote:This year, thinking probably late May?


Yup. Assuming we're at 100% of normal on 4-1, I've got it at May 26th +/- 8 days. Model doesn't really say much until the end of March - and who knows what March will bring?

I could share it as a Google Spreadsheet if anyone is interested. It's a blend of:

(A) linear regression: opening date = X * [4-1 snowpack] + constant
(B) Nearest neighbor regressoion: takes the average of all 4-1 snowpack figures within +/- 20% of the year you're forecasting for

Really, it's probably no better than totally spitballing it - provided you're familiar with the Sierra - but who doesn't love a little pointless precision now and then? :D My main goal was to know which weekend would likely be a good bet to grab Thursday or Friday permits for, and to know this BEFORE the NPS announces the opening date. I hope the model should get it done in that respect.

If anyone knows of a good historical set of the forward-looking precip forecasts, I could probably make it more usefully precise.
Last edited by MichaelRPetrick on Fri Feb 19, 2016 2:47 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby rlown » Fri Feb 19, 2016 12:12 pm

the historical data of Tioga openings are at http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/tiogaopen.htm

remember they don't start plowing until tax day.
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby MichaelRPetrick » Fri Feb 19, 2016 12:17 pm

rlown wrote:the historical data of Tioga openings are at http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/tiogaopen.htm

remember they don't start plowing until tax day.


Yup, that's the only data I used for the model parameters.
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby Cross Country » Fri Feb 19, 2016 6:11 pm

Circa 1967 we were at Tioga Road on July 4 and almost the entire road was closed and the snow at the end of the open part (west) was about 6 feet deep.
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby Wandering Daisy » Fri Feb 19, 2016 7:14 pm

I think there is more pressure now than in 1967 to plow Tioga Pass earlier. The local economy on both ends realty depend on the road being open. And it is not stacking up to be a 200% snow year either. I went in a few years ago on the first day the pass was open and had to wait at a road block for 2 hours. There are always rocks that fall as the snow melts. I ended up with a noon start instead of a mid-morning start.

The problem with any model based on historical data, is that you cannot assume the past weather is predictive of the future weather. But, yes, it is fun to make such models and speculate. Also the administrative decision process as well as funding of the snow plowing efforts are always changing. It is probably 70% weather, and 30% politics. You need to analyze election years vs. others and which party is in office! And no matter what, it is all Obama's fault. ;)
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Re: Tioga Road officially closed (finally) 2015

Postby MichaelRPetrick » Fri Feb 19, 2016 9:49 pm

Also the administrative decision process as well as funding of the snow plowing efforts are always changing. It is probably 70% weather, and 30% politics. You need to analyze election years vs. others and which party is in office! And no matter what, it is all Obama's fault. ;)


Hahahaha. Both true and funny. Have you ever seen the graph of the year-end price of butter in Bangladesh vs. the year-end price of the S&P 500? It was perfect fit (indexed to a mid-80s starting point I believe) for no actual reason for something like two decades.

I went in a few years ago on the first day the pass was open and had to wait at a road block for 2 hours. There are always rocks that fall as the snow melts. I ended up with a noon start instead of a mid-morning start.


That's very useful info, thanks WD.
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