The park is open for enterprise – and few vacationers are right here — providing snowboarding, snowboarding, ice skating and extra.

Yesterday at dawn, I backflipped out of a aircraft throughout a tandem skydive over Yosemite Valley. The loud roar of wind stuffed my ears as we dropped quick, and when the chute opened all the pieces turned silent and we floated via the air. The morning sky was thick with reds and blues mixing with white clouds that prolonged out over the foothills.

Although we jumped over the park, we landed – as per protocol — on the Mariposa-Yosemite Airport, dwelling to Skydive Yosemite. Co-owner Paul Wignall is an previous good friend and with him I deliberate our epic let’s-do-everything-in-one-day-in-Yosemite outing. From Mariposa, we drove to the park for snowboarding, mountain climbing, rock climbing and ice skating. On the way in which in we stopped on the city of Midpines and the Yosemite Bug Rustic Mountain Resort for enormous breakfast burritos and to choose up our good friend Isaiah Foulks. Foulks, whose dad is a former member of Yosemite Search and Rescue (YOSAR), grew up within the park. Lower than an hour of winding roads later we entered Yosemite, the place we might see snow on the highest of Half Dome, however the place many of the Valley flooring was dry and snow-free. A half-hour extra of driving introduced us as much as the Badger Pass Ski Resort.

Like many sights in Yosemite, Badger is family-friendly. That is the place Wignall teaches his youngsters to ski on the light, rolling slopes. However the resort can also be steep sufficient to essentially decide up pace, particularly when the snow is packed and groomed prefer it was yesterday. We rode for hours with out ever standing in a raise line, our boards carving over corduroy slopes and alongside the aspect trails. The solar was shining, it was heat and we rode quick.

Brief raise strains and ideal Corduroy slopes make driving Badger Cross enjoyable and peaceable. Chris Van Leuven

From Badger we dropped again down the Valley flooring and tucked into Curry Village, or as some name it Little Siberia as a result of it’s all the time so chilly. Regardless of solely receiving an hour of solar per day throughout winter, the world was nonetheless heat sufficient for rock climbing, so we hiked up towards Staircase Falls and took within the grandeur of the park whereas jamming an all-time finger crack. From the perch up by Staircase there are unobstructed views of lots of the park’s most iconic formations: Half Dome, Washington Column, Mount Watkins and Yosemite Falls. The falls run throughout winter, however like most issues within the park, they’re slowed down. Listening to the evenly flowing trickle of Staircase Falls is mesmerizing and it’s such a delicate fall you could stroll proper up and put your hand proper in it.

From the falls we dropped again all the way down to Curry Village for ice skating. Right here, within the shadow of Half Dome that captured a shiny ray of alpenglow, we laced up subsequent to a scorching fireplace. Mother and father helped their youngsters on and off the ice, whereas the three of us chased one another across the rink. Because the sky darkened and rink lights went on, we discovered our approach again to the fireplace and shared a spherical of s’mores.

Staircase Falls, Yosemite
Listening to the mushy trickle of Staircase Falls is mesmerizing. Paul Wignall/Skydive Yosemite

Penning this now, with legs battered from crashing on the ice and fingers pinched from jamming them in tight cracks, I can’t assist however smile pondering again via all of the highlights. I’ll take a quiet ski resort over a busy one any day. Identical with the granite rocks right here, which throughout winter see few climbers. And eventually the ice skating, the place that little rink in Curry Village packs enjoyable and problem for everybody. Like many year-round residents, together with Isaiah, I just like the solitude that’s out there right here. Throughout winter it’s uncommon to see one other customer on the partitions and trails.

Although Yosemite is unimaginable all 12 months, the winter season is one thing particular.

ice skating in Yosemite
Paul Wignall, proprietor of Skydive Yosemite, ice skating underneath Half Dome. Chris Van Leuven

Lodging could be booked within the park via Aramark and there are many Airbnb choices in Foresta (inside the park) the encompassing cities of Midpines, together with AutoCamp, and Mariposa. Bookings for Skydive Yosemite could be made here.

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