Evacuations remain in North Fork, lifted in Yosemite

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Water flowed heavily from Bass Lake to Willow Creek Sunday and Monday, forcing calls for evacuations in the nearby town of North Fork. (KFSN)

A North Fork neighborhood remains relatively empty. You wouldn't know it at first glance, but the area was evacuated because of dangerous flooding late Sunday.

Michael Sayer works for a utility company in the neighborhood

"A lot of roads washed out, sites going down, it's amazing actually."

RELATED: NORTH FORK RESIDENTS FORCED TO FLEE FROM FLOOD WATERS
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The normally calm Willow Creek is now a raging river after the latest storm caused it to overflow and flooded the area overnight.



The water level on Church Street has receded, yet families are still not allowed back in their homes because the threat of flooding is too great.

"I've seen a lot, I've seen a lot of rain, I've seen a lot of swollen creeks, and this is a gusher this time. We got a lot of rain in a short amount of time," said Bob McKee local hardware store owner. "I feel bad for all those people living down there, but they might consider that the next time they rent or move into a house in that area."

RELATED: WITH MORE RAIN ON THE FORECAST, EVACUATED NORTH FORK RESIDENTS FEAR FOR HOMES
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Evacuation orders remain in North Fork and dozens of homes are sitting in feet of swampy water from the weekend storm.


With another series of storms expected nearby Willow Creek could once again swell and overflow into this section of North Fork by weeks end.

"We had about four or five inches in 24 hours and that's a lot of rain to control from the Bass Lake Diversion System," said McKee.

If the potential threat of flooding continues the Red Cross evacuation center will remain open in Oakhurst.

Further north, along Highway 41, heavy rain caused flood concerns at Yosemite National Park, prompting a closure of all roads to the Valley Floor and evacuations for around 50 park employees. The Merced River at Pohono Bridge rose more than 2 feet above flood level on Monday.


Park rangers took extra precaution after the 1997 flooding, but say this time there was minimal debris left in the roadway.

"In some of the low lying areas, we have had some standing water and there has been some water but the nice thing is electrical power never went out. the water system stayed in tact," said Scott Gediman, Yosemite National Park.

Park employees returned to Yosemite Valley on Monday afternoon. They plan to open the gates at 8 a.m. Tuesday morning. Campgrounds are expected to open Tuesday evening and commercial services are slated to open on Wednesday. Visitors are asked to be cautious in the area because of debris and standing water.

RELATED: YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK OFFICIAL SAYS NO MAJOR FLOODING AFTER STORM DESPITE ROAD CLOSURES
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Yosemite National Park visitors are asked to be aware of hazards, including potential wet and icy road conditions, mudslides and debris on the roads.

Related Topics:
weatherfloodingevacuationstormNorth ForkYosemite Lakes ParkBass Lake
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