Sections of California’s Merced River were added to the Wild and Scenic River System at two separate times, November 2, 1987 and October 23, 1992. The designated sections include the Red Peak Fork, Merced Peak Fork, Triple Peak Fork, and Lyle Fork, from their sources in Yosemite National Park to Lake McClure; and the South Fork from its source in Yosemite National Park to the confluence with the main stem. A total of 122.5 miles of the Merced River are designated under the Wild and Scenic River System. 71 miles are designated as Wild, 16 miles are Scenic, and 35.5 miles are Recreational. No Water No Life visited the Merced River in Yosemite National Park during the fifth California Drought Spotlight Expedition in 2016. For more information about NWNL’s California Drought Spotlight please visit our Spotlights page. For more information about the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act read the first part of this blog series. Here are a few pictures of the Merced River from the 2016 expedition taken by NWNL Director Alison Jones.
Sign marking the Jan 2, 1997 flood level of Merced River in Yosemite National Park
View of the Merced River in Yosemite Valley from Sentinel Bridge
Sign explaining Merced River’s early name “River of Mercy” in Yosemite Valley
View of Merced River in Yosemite National Park with Half-Dome in the background
All photos © Alison M. Jones.