The Tuolumne River is a majestic presence in Yosemite National Park, with a canyon that rivals the Grand Canyon in depth, and a valley that once rivaled Yosemite Valley at Hetch Hetchy before the dam was built. But don't discount the lower parts of the river where it flows through the Central Valley. It is this part of the river that supports the greatest diversity of animal and plant life. I've seen otters, bobcats, foxes, coyotes, raccoons, deer, and evidence of beaver in recent years, and nearly 150 species of birds have been reported on the two miles of river trail that I follow every day. It's a special place.