Merced, California, US
|Usual Difficulty||V (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||242 fpm|
|MERCED R A POHONO BRIDGE NR YOSEMITE CA|
|usgs-11266500||300 - 1000 cfs||V||00h33m||290 cfs (too low)|
This section probably does not get paddled very much as it was discouraged / not allowed by Yosemite National Park, until 2014. The first descent, described in Holbeck and Stanley was enabled by Yosemite local Tom Meagher who arranged special permission. Other parties have descended the river, and by modern standards it may be comparable to other very difficult rivers now commontly run. It is likely that numerous portages remain for even the best boaters.
Starting in 2014, up to 10 boaters a day may register to paddle this section.
Put in: Elevation = 3820 feet.
Alternate Access Points: The road is close to the river over much of this section though it climbs away below Arch Rock entrance station. There are numerous potential alternate access points. In the area near Cascade Creek the gradient and difficulty on the Merced is moderate. However, the park service may establish restrictions or protocols for access sites in order to protect riparian habitat.
Take out: Highway 140 comes back down to river level at the park boundary. There are two large turnouts for parking upstream of the motels. Elevation = 2120 feet.
The total drop in this section is about 1700 feet over 7 miles for an average gradient of 240 feet per mile.
Merced & SF Merced Planning Process:
Yosemite National Park released their Merced Wild and Scenic Final Comprehensive Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement, and we're very pleased to announce that the Park Service has improved and enhanced opportunities to enjoy Yosemite via kayak, canoe and raft. The new plan places paddling on equal footing with other activities in the Park by managing visitor numbers similar to hiking and other backcountry uses. The plan considers river segments as "water trails" or backcountry routes
Starting in 2014, up to 10 boaters per day may paddle this section, after registering with the park. The method of registering has not been announced, yet.
Paddling in Yosemite–Comments Due April 18th
April 2, 2013
ACTION ALERT–Help to open Yosemite to boating!
February 8, 2013
Paddling on the Merced in Yosemite!
March 27, 2012
Merced River Plan Suggestions Needed by Feb 4, 2010
January 19, 2010
Yosemite National Park Releases Final Merced River Plan
February 14, 2014
Merced in Yosemite–Officially Open at Last!!
April 27, 2015