Envisioning the Restoration of Mariposa Grove

Date Posted: 08.12.2015

The largest of three sequoia groves within Yosemite National Park, Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias contains hundreds of mature trees that are up to 300 feet tall and 3,000 years old. While these giants spent thousands of years undisturbed, the past century of human impact has taken a toll on the Grove’s fragile ecosystem.

In response, a landmark restoration and improvement project is underway to restore dynamic ecological processes and increase the resiliency of this treasured resource. Potentially the largest project in Park history, the significant restoration effort is made possible by a strong public/private partnership between the National Park Service and Yosemite Conservancy. Mithun led planning and design of the comprehensive restoration plan, which includes the relocation of existing parking areas and infrastructure, revised circulation, new visitor educational and interpretive facilities, new accessible interpretive trails and trailheads, and most importantly, restoration of giant sequoia and wetland habitats.

The grove closed in July to accommodate the significant restoration and construction efforts. Mithun and the Yosemite Conservancy created this video illustrating the exciting changes planned for the Mariposa Grove, and how these interventions will support both ecological protection and visitor needs.

Yosemite Conservancy president Mike Tollefson explains that when the project is complete, “Visitors will be able to walk among the trees and experience living history in a cathedral-like setting.”