The oldest and largest state conservation corps program in the country (established in 1976), California Conservation Corps (CCC) crews returned to Yosemite in summer 2012 to restore trails and develop life skills. Crew members came from diverse backgrounds and, through ongoing programs that included employment training, academic education and scholarships, youth were set on a path to successful lives.

Part of the crews’ backcountry experience included training in the dry-stone masonry techniques. Techniques in trail repair were part of a comprehensive program where youth also learned about ecology, resource management, sustainability, wilderness survival training, career development training and health and safety skills.

Crews covered over 40 miles of trails in the Tuolumne watershed, including restoration and repairs on the Pacific Crest Trail / John Muir Trail near Donahue Pass. The Merced watershed saw over 60 miles of trails restored through the CCC crews’ efforts.

The Tuolumne River is one of Yosemite’s two main watersheds. Its area includes streams, meadows, granite domes, canyons and the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir. Wilderness trails in this watershed offer access to spectacular hiking and are the only way to access some of the park’s best fishing and backcountry camping spots. Many people are familiar with portions of the Merced watershed as it flows through Yosemite Valley and nearby Wawona, both popular areas for park visitors. Keep an eye out for CCC crews if you visit Yosemite during the summer, and say hi if you pass them on the trail!

Your support goes to work in creating the best in youth programs and trail restoration. Visitors enjoy better trails and youth spend their summers immersed in the outdoors while learning valuable skills.

Partnering with California Conservation Corps (CCC), a program for young adults in their late teens and early 20s and Yosemite National Park.



Participant, California Conservation Corps

Project Notes

This is a unique opportunity for the young men and women of this country to step up and learn firsthand the importance of the national park system. Giving them your support enables a new generation to experience, grow and shape the future of Yosemite.