Ferguson Fire: Thick smoke blocking views of Yosemite National Park

YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, Calif. -- If you're heading up to Yosemite National Park, be prepared for what you're about to see, which may not be much.

Air quality in the area has reached unhealthy levels thanks to smoke coming from the nearby Ferguson Fire.

Pam Austin from Iowa described the experience.

"We've seen a lot of smoke. The smell of smoke. Our clothes smell like smoke; we smell like smoke," she said.

Many travelers left the national park disappointed Tuesday after the thick layer of haze prevented them from enjoying Yosemite's full potential of picturesque views.

Barney Farley was visiting the area along with his family from Missouri.

"We've been planning on coming here for years. A little disappointing, but, like I said, we're here," shared Farley.

The smoke is not expected to subside anytime soon as the Ferguson Fire continues to burn west of the park.

Campsites and hiking trails remain open in the park, while, officials said, restaurants and hotels haven't seen a drop off since smoke shifted into the area Sunday.

Therese Williams from Visit Yosemite advised that tourists come through Highway 41. "Restaurants are still open; everything is still open. I think that it is important to get the message out that we are open for business."

That is of little consolation for Mohammed Ahmed and his family, who made the cross-country trip from Virginia.

"It is not that easy to cancel very last minute," he said. "We all have vacation planned, so it is not that easy to do that kind of stuff."
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