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Preferred Structure Name:
Glacier Point Road Single Culverts w/ Headwalls
Structure Number:
Other Structure Name(s):
Other Structure Name(s)
No records.
Yosemite National Park
Historic District:
Historic District
Glacier Point Road Historic District
Structure State:
Structure County:
Pacific West
Pacific Great Basin
Administrative Unit:
Yosemite National Park
Historical Significance:

National Register Status:
Determined Eligible - SHPO
National Register Date:
National Historic Landmark?:
Significance Level:
Short Significance Description:
Glacier Point Road Historic District:
SHPO – DOE 09/27/2007
Significance Level: Local
Significant for Criteria A and C
Period of Significance: 1882-1936
Long Significance Description:
The Glacier Point Road system is a cultural landscape located within Yosemite National Park. The landscape encompasses both the currently used Glacier Point Road and Old Glacier Point Road. The landscape is significant for its association with the development of tourism and scenic preservation and the development of transportation in Yosemite National Park (Criterion A). It is also significant for its association with the design style of naturalistic landscape architecture put forth by the NPS during the 1930s (Criterion C). It is recommended eligible for the NRHP under Criteria A and C as a historic district with local significance. The property includes 140 contributing features, at least 50 non-contributing features, and 12 unknown features.

Glacier Point Road is an intact example of an early park scenic road constructed using the first national NPS standards for road building. Glacier Point Road retains integrity of location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling, and association. The road’s naturalistic character is apparent in the extant landscape characteristics and features, namely the road’s response to natural systems and features, spatial organization, topography, vegetation, land use, circulation, structures, views and vistas, small-scale features, and associated archeological resources, such as an example of the earliest type of park roads. For these reasons, Glacier Point Road is an excellent example of the type of road designed during the pinnacle of NPS rustic landscape design in the 1930s.
Construction Period:

Construction Period:
Physical Event
Begin Year
Begin Year CE/BCE
End Year
End Year CE/BCE
Designer Occupation
Bureau of Public Lands
Function and Use:

Primary Historic Function:
Road Culvert
Primary Current Use:
Road Culvert
Structure Contains Museum Collections?:
Other Functions or Uses:
Other Function(s) or Use(s)
Historic or Current
No records.
Physical Description:

Structure Type:
Special Feature
Structural Component(s)
Short Physical Description:
Numerous metal culverts along rd. Consists of squared, rectangular rock headwall arches on upslope side of rd w/ metal pipes (18-24" and 30-36" diameter). Downslope side of rd generally no headwalls around the smaller metal culverts; larger culverts had headwalls at both ends.
Long Physical Description:
18- to 24-inch pipe culverts with mortared stone headwalls (96 total):
Typical headwall construction of the smaller 18- and 24-inch pipe culverts that drain ephemeral waters consists of rough shaped, mortared cobbles that extend for one to three courses above the pipe and extend to each side for 2 or 3 feet. This is the most common type of culvert construction in the Chinquapin to Sentinel Saddle sections of the road. Some of these culverts feature rock work at both the inlet and the outlet, while most are only finished at the inlet. According to NPS design criteria, some of the drains have no rock work at the outlet end because these are not visible from the road and would not detract from the natural character of the landscape. A report on the construction of the road explains, “masonry headwalls were to be constructed on the inlet end of all culverts but on the outlet ends only if the end of the culvert could be seen from the roadway.” Some of the outlets appear to have rubble stacked around the outlet, but no formed headwall. Some of the culvert headwalls have more than two or three courses of rock, although these are not common. Presumably, more courses were needed where the culvert was situated at a greater depth below the road.

30- to 36-inch pipe culverts (3 total):
At a few locations where perennial water streams cross the roadway, such as at Summit Meadow and the East Fork of Sentinel Creek, a single large diameter pipe culvert was used. The headwalls are the same style as those used with smaller standard pipes, but tend to be more massive in construction. These larger culverts have mortared stone headwalls at both the inlet and outlet.