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Oak Trees Unexpectedly Falling In Yosemite

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Yosemite, Ca — After observing several large oak tree failures earlier this month around El Portal and Mid Pines, Yosemite National Park issued a warning to residents and visitors to take proper precautions.

?This time of year when we get building high pressure, extra warm temperatures, and calm conditions, we occasionally have large oak trees or oak limbs that will fall down without any rot or outwardly visible things that we can see wrong with them,? says Yosemite National Park Forester Brian Mattos. ?We have put out a general warning to not fall asleep under heavy oaks on these hot days, and not leave immobile people, such as infants or the elderly, under large oak trees even though the shade may be inviting.?

Mattos adds that last week a large seemingly healthy oak tree unexpectedly fell on a housekeeping building at the Yosemite Lodge, and thankfully there were no injuries.

?It seems to be that oak trees that have plenty of water are the most likely to fail,? says Mattos. ?So in Yosemite, it is mostly along the river bottoms.?

So far this year there have been five failures that have been documented close to Yosemite facilities. Mattos says it is a relatively small percentage, as there are an estimated 100,000 oak trees near the river bottoms.

Written by BJ Hansen