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Route 140--Mariposa County

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Quick Facts
Designation: California State Scenic Highway
Length, One-Way: 27 Miles (45.0 Kilometers)
Time: 33 Minutes @ 50 mph


General Information

Description - Route 140--Mariposa County scenic highway begins near the town of Mariposa, southeast of Yosemite National Park. It climbs from oak woodlands through the scenic and historic Merced River Canyon and into Yosemite. This strikingly beautiful area is known for its rocky gorges that sensuously weave across the landscape providing boulder-chocked passages at the mountain floor.

Attractions - This 27-mile scenic byway takes visitors through an area known for its spectacular natural wonders and fabulous outdoor recreation opportunities. The exact location of the byway is from the north boundary of the Mariposa Town Planning Area to the west boundary of El Portal Town Planning Area. In Mariposa, a town which is aptly named by early Spanish explorers who discovered creekbeds flourishing with butterflies, rests Mineral Museum. The attraction is a California Division of Mines and Geology museum featuring gems, paleontology, a gold stamp mill and much more. Heading north along serpentine Highway 140 leads to the famed Merced River. This whitewater rafting destination is one of the best in the state with whitewater ranging from Class II (beginner) to Class V+ (advanced).

Other area attractions include California's gold rush country where gold prospecting remains a fascination. Horseback riding, OHV use, mountain biking, backcountry travel, and hiking can be enjoyed on the public lands which include Folsom BLM Field Office area, Sierra National Forest, Stanislau National Forest and Yosemite National Park.

You may wish to follow Route 140 northeast past El Portal to Yosemite Village, gateway to Yosemite National Park. (Highway 140 ends in Yosemite Village.)

Recreation - The Route 140--Mariposa County is known for it's unsurpassed natural attractions.

Climate - The High Sierra generally experiences warm, dry summers and cold, snowy and wet winters. Weather can change rapidly during all seasons of the year. Elevation plays a major role in temperature and precipitation. This precipitation falls mainly from October through April. At higher elevations, it comes mostly in the form of snow. A snowpack from 5-10 feet or more is usually present from December to May at elevations above 6,500 feet. Winter temperatures below zero and summer temperatures above 100 degrees indicate the normal seasonal spread. Clouds can build up during the summer to produce spectacular thunderstorm activity. It is wise to pack for any season with clothing that can be "layered," ready to peel off or add on as the thermometer dictates. Always include some kind of rain gear.

Location - This byway is located in the High Sierra Region. It leads into Yosemite National Park from the southeast. The byway begins near Mariposa on Highway 140. Follow Route 140 northeast past El Portal to Yosemite Village. (Highway 140 ends in Yosemite Village.)

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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Scenic Driving Route 140--Mariposa County
Yes
ICON Viewing Scenery Route 140--Mariposa County
Yes


More Information

Additional Information:
California Scenic Byways - California offers one All American Road, two National Scenic Byways, and well over 50 state and National Forest designated scenic byways.

Links:
Scenic Byways Homepage - National Scenic Byways official web site with detailed info on all national and state byways.

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