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Access to NPs in March - chains or no chains?

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Paderborn, Germany
posts: 2
reviews: 2
Access to NPs in March - chains or no chains?

We are driving from Death Valley to Yosimite from 24 - 30 March and would like to stop off at Lodgepole Village in Sequoia NP and then head into Yosimite via Hwy 140.

There is lots of different advice regarding snow chains in the NPs at this time of year, what is the bottom line - do we have to be carrying snow chains to get access to these two NPs? We will be in a hire car so snow chains will be a problem if we are required to carry them.

Thanks

Washington State
Destination Expert
for Yosemite National Park
posts: 39,463
reviews: 74
1. Re: Access to NPs in March - chains or no chains?

Hi Lynne

I don't know about SEKI, but there is some winter driving info on the Yosemite NP forum page. Look at the Top Questions in the upper right. tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g61000-i315

Carrying chains does not void your agreement with the rental agency. Putting chains on AND causing damage to the car is the problem.

Sequoia National...
posts: 463
2. Re: Access to NPs in March - chains or no chains?

Hello Lynne,

In both Yosemite and Sequoia, California state law requires at least one set of traction control devices (chains or cables) to be carried in all vehicles when entering a chain control zone. Whether or not you will need to use them will depend on current conditions, but you will have to have them in the car. At certain times the Park Service will also screen vehicles entering the parks to make sure you have them. March is typically our heaviest snow month so my best advice would be to rent a vehicle with 4 wheel or all wheel drive. In most cases that will be enough to get you through the chain control zones.

I also highly advise calling the Sequoia road/weather hotline before entering the park to make sure the roads you intend to use are open (dial 559-565-3341). There is only one main road that runs through the park, and it can close temporarily about halfway between Sequoia and Kings Canyon after periods of heavy snow, so if you plan to drive straight through the parks on your way to Yosemite that could play a factor.

3. Re: Access to NPs in March - chains or no chains?

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