Paltry snowpack forces skiers to higher ground amid drought 

(AP) — We've trudged through deep powder, braved icy slopes and weathered rain, wind and snow in an annual quest to reach a ski cabin in the wilderness of Sequoia National Park for the past 13 years. We always had skis on our feet — until this year.

Visalia weighs new downtown hotel to lure conventions

The Visalia City Council is exploring the development of a new hotel near the Visalia Convention Center.

January a hopping month in Sequoia, Kings Canyon parks

Visitation was up significantly in Kings Canyon and Sequoia national parks in January.Both Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks saw a major uptick in visitation in January, according to figures from the U.S. National Parks Service.

Climbers hope historic ascent inspires fans to follow dreams 

Adidas Outdoor athlete Kevin Jorgeson and partner Tommy Caldwell complete the first free ascent of El Capitan's historic Dawn Wall. (Photo Credit: Ted Distel/adidas Outdoor)(AP) — A day after completing what had been considered the world's most difficult rock climb, two Americans who spent 19 days living on a sheer granite wall said they hope their feat inspires others to follow their own passions.

Fresno Chaffee Zoo sets another attendance record

Fresno Chaffee Zoo attendance exceeded 700,000 last year for the first time in the zoo's history.Fresno Chaffee Zoo officials announced today that attendance for 2014 was another record breaker with 703,325 guests — eclipsing the 700,000 mark for the first time.

Climbers expected to reach top of Yosemite peak Wednesday

(AP) — Two climbers vying to finish the once-seemingly impossible challenge of scaling a sheer slab of granite in California's Yosemite National Park without climbing aids are closing in on the top of the 3,000-foot peak.

Yosemite climbers push to finish El Capitan ascent 

(AP) — One of two climbers attempting a grueling ascent up a half-mile of sheer granite in California's Yosemite National Park was making a push Monday to catch up with his partner.

2 men attempt most difficult climb in world at Yosemite 

(AP) — Two men are roughly halfway through what has been called the hardest rock climb in the world: a free climb of a half-mile section of exposed granite in California's Yosemite National Park.

Dispute could lead to name changes at Yosemite

(AP) — A dispute over the names of such iconic Yosemite National Park locations as the Ahwahnee Hotel and Curry Village has the park service considering renaming them.

Valley lodges see slowdown in November

Fresno area lodges earned $14.28 million in November, down from $15.73 million the month before.Business slowed for Valley lodges in November, but revenues were still up compared to recent years.