The route traverses several prominent sub-ranges of the Sierra Nevada, crosses 15 passes, passes by each of the 10 highest peaks in the park, and visits the parks only two glaciers, crossing one of them. Another shot of the peaks across Virginia Canyon. If a date is listed for a particular trailhead, that means there are no more reservations available for that trailhead on that day. Don’t worry, it’s only the top 400’, and with a little care and some hands-and-feet, it goes. I chose the right (west) side. Last views of the Cathedral Range before reentering the forest. Reviews. Stanton Pass was probably the most sustained section of talus on the entire north loop. A good view of the entire chute. I thought it was neat to see, but not quite worthy of that distinction. Tomorrow’s route would walk a large loop around Lyell Canyon, then cross the crest at the rightmost point before it becomes craggy, and descend Parker Pass Creek to Tuolumne Meadows. The young black bear ran away very quickly, so I couldn’t snap a photo. I initially hoped to use the Fourth of July holiday week to get a full week off for the price of only three vacation days, but the spring of 2019 was not forgiving to the early season California backpacker. Looking south from the clearing, Mount Lyell and Mount Maclure are clearly visible, the large snowfield of the Lyell Glacier makes Mount Lyell very obvious. Is there buttloads of snow right now? Pink Mountain Heather in the forest en route to Keyes Peak Pass. Wanting to stay in California meant it was down to the King’s Canyon High Basin Route (KCHBR), or the Yosemite High Route (YHR). From here, the route takes a hard left, climbs to a saddle, and descends 1,000’ to Piute Canyon. Parker Pass Creek flowing through a meadow. Overlooking the first pond, and the south half of the Clark Range. Several of these register entries referenced the difficulty of my next pass, Lemonade Pass. The Merced continues downstream over Nevada and Vernal falls, and then through Yosemite Valley. Electra Peak rising above an immense field of granite. 6. Best Place to Park to Access Trailhead: Park at Yosemite Village and walk to the trailhead. I realized I wasn’t going to make it to Grace Meadow during daylight hours today. First, look on a map of where you are planning to go and go over the list again. 2) 8 miles to Raisin Lake, not too hard, some mosquito-rich sections in the Cathedral creek area, last part climbing up towards Raisin Lake has spectacular views, great wildflowers. The closest trailheads to Snow Peak are located at the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir in the south, or at Leavitt Meadows from the north. Looking back up at the 200’ of descending over talus and through brush along the Lyell Fork to join the JMT. The view back across Roosevelt Lake, with Don’t Be a Smart Pass in the background. YOSEMITE CLIMBING TRAILS PROGRAM MADE POSSIBLE BY THE YOSEMITE CONSERVANCY Through the years climbing has increased in popularity, with an estimated 6.8 million climbers worldwide. The first 400’ of descent were much trickier, with large talus on fairly steep terrain. Here’s a view looking back at the other route, the class 4 slab downclimb. If you shorten your trip, you can join via Twin Lakes and Robinson Lakes, or via the Sierra High Route in Spiller Canyon. I convinced myself that I was pushing it a bit too far and wasn’t as comfortable with this style of hiking as I previously thought. Please explain. Here’s a photo of Josh crossing the snowfield with his impressively small backpack. Here’s the southern terminus of the YHR, along the Merced River just upstream from the small aspen grove. This system is designed to reduce impact and avoid overcrowding. This is a list of trailhead names for wilderness permit purposes. If the … The Slide, an impressive rockslide that threw enormous boulders clean across this canyon. After crossing Maclure Creek at the outlet of Maclure Lake, I was very surprised to see this bright orange arrow. I opted for the right route, as it looked a bit easier to me. If you’re searching for sweeping views of Yosemite Valley and an epic view of Half Dome, you can’t beat the Clouds Rest hike. They were locked, as were the outhouses at the backpacker’s camp. After doing this homework I realized that the south loop had much more of a “high route” character than the north loop. You’ll see granite cliffs thousands of feet tall, countless perfect-U-shaped canyons, and full 360-degree views of the domes and crags of the Cathedral Range. The view west from Quartzite Peak, Half Dome and Clouds Rest are clearly visible, as is the burn scar from the Meadow Fire. Yosemite National Park has a trailhead quota system limiting the number of people entering a particular trailhead on a given day. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a picture. November 4, 2019; Accident Report; SCENARIO. Trails are compared with nearby trails in the same city region with a possible 25 colour shades. These kinds of things are always easier going up than down, but I don’t remember it being very loose or scary. The top 50’ were a steep sand slope, which is difficult but not dangerous. Continuing up south of Quartzite Peak, into the Clark Range. I made camp along Return Creek near the junction with the next climb, ate dinner, washed my feet, and enjoyed the sunset. Of each daily quota for a trailhead, 60% can be reserved ahead of time, up to 24 weeks (168 days) in advance. Near the end of 2017, Julie booked us two nights at the Yosemite Valley Lodge, for President’s Day Week.The hotel has been our mainstay on each of our prior winter trips with its central location. Yes. Looking up at waterfalls along Piute Creek. Four Mile Trail also closes for the winter. Twice I retraced where I thought I had walked, and then once more on hands and knees, but was not able to find it. Rock Island Lake in the morning. 4. Spam? An out-and-back overnight would be 10.9 miles. The occasional breeze blowing up the creek offered some respite from the mosquitoes, which were absolutely horrendous in the marshes near the lakeshore. The Meeks Bay trail head is the start point for the classic 181 mile Tahoe to Yosemite Trail backpacking route described in Thomas Winnett's classic 1970 book, The Tahoe-Yosemite Trail. Trailhead Quota System. I was excited to hit a trail at the base of the next canyon, having been off trail since this morning. Below the trail junction to Babcock Lake, the Clark Range comes into view. The next climb to Russell Pass was a big one, 1,500’ up to the route’s high point at 12,000’. *Trailhead parking is just beyond Curry Village (and about a half-mile from Happy Isles). One of the many lightly forested lakes on the trail descending from Red Peak Pass. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from March until October. All permits will be distributed via email. I wasn’t too concerned because these weren’t thunderclouds. (including Harden Lake), Park at wilderness center or Dog Lake parking, Glen Aulin to Cold Canyon/Waterwheel A tumble here would be bad news. Hiking Trails. It looked like this guy had expired sometime recently, maybe this summer. Rock Island Lake and the peak behind from its inlet stream, near my camp for the night. https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/california/cathedral-lake-trail In my opinion, everything north of Matterhorn Pass could be skipped without any sacrifices in high route scenery. It indicated the location of a survey marker. Despite the initial impressive scenery, I wouldn’t recommend the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne. trailhead accessible only via Four Mile Trail in 2022. The talus on the route down to Helen Lake was somewhat tricky to navigate. After this, there’s one more good vista before Tuolumne. Rather than walk all the way around Harriet Lake to get there, I shortcut across the talus on the south shore of the lake, this route might not go earlier in the season. From this vantage point, the glacier was about 1,000’ above me, but its size (at least by the standards of the Sierra), and especially its thickness, are evident even from far away. One of my favourite flowers, White Mountain Heather. I saw some things floating in Roosevelt Lake, and then noticed these rocks. Looking down Spiller Canyon. Not pictured, the horrendous mosquitos. South of Matterhorn Pass, the route improves with some nice sections over Stanton Pass, past Soldier Lake, and from McCabe Lake over Don’t Be A Smart Pass to Roosevelt Lake. The subtle trail junction in Kerrick Meadow. You’ll see remarkable waterfalls in Yosemite Valley, in the Grand Canyon, and along the Merced River. With its ancient sequoia trees, the iconic Bridalveil Falls and majestic granite cliffs of Half Dome and El Capitan, there are so many wonders to enjoy. I continued on, but couldn’t figure out what they were talking about, so I decided to suck it up and deal with the mosquitos in Pate Valley. I reviewed it carefully on Google Maps, found Jose’s pictures on Instagram, and found a few trip reports from this area. The John Muir Trail can only be directly accessed via these trailheads: Camping is not allowed on the Panorama Trail or near Illilouette Fall. Getting There TIOGA ROAD APPROACH (Porcupine Creek TH): The trailhead is on the south side of CA SR-120 (aka Tioga Road) between the turnoffs for White Wolf and May Lake (for Mount Hoffman).It is ~12 miles west of Tuolumne Meadows.. YOSEMITE VALLEY APPROACH (Yosemite Falls & Snow Creek THs): For general transportation information, refer to the Yosemite Valley page. Yosemite has so much to see including the … Ponds in Crazy Mule Gulch. Planning Your Overlooking Thompson Canyon, with Willow Pass in the foreground. This descent was very tricky. Looking up Stubblefield Canyon from the climb to Lake 9774. I followed the instructions up Lemonade Pass and made it without incident. The trail is technically the Big Oak Flat Road, which is no longer in use by vehicles. Both the Tuolumne and Merced are nationally-designated wild and scenic rivers, which flow through remarkable glacially-carved canyons, thousands of feet deep. One member of the party was calling to report that his mother (77 years old) and her friend (64 years old) were feeling exhausted and hot, and didn’t think they could complete the hike. For the fullest experience, the Yosemite High Route is best completed as an end-to-end thru-hike. The two rivers independently join the San Joaquin, another great river of the Sierra, before flowing to the Pacific Ocean. I hit the trail just after 11, hiking towards the Tuolumne Meadows store, across the road, across the meadows, and into the woods. As Skurka mentions in the guide, the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne is one of the deepest canyons in the United States. Matterhorn Pass from below. Looking back at Stanton Pass and Virginia Peak from the contour to Soldier Lake. Passes always look most difficult from below, but this one looked especially steep. I could also see two other hikers descending the ledges below Shelf Pass. A neat shot West from Shelf Pass. For me, this marked the start of an almost 4,000’ climb. It was difficult, without the rewarding high mountain scenery I had expected. As I entered the forest again, I tried to avoid the avalanche chute marked on the map, but couldn’t find any particularly easy route. Great views over a small tarn above Obelisk Lake. The Clouds Rest trail is one of the best hikes in Yosemite and offers you epic views of Half Dome once you reach the summit. Anyways it looks like it's 8.9 miles from May Lake to Yosemite Valley, and then 13 miles back up to Sunrise Lakes. Summit Lake is just visible as well in the saddle at center. The descent from Tower Peak Pass was pretty close to steep enough for downclimbing. Glacier Point to Little Yosemite Valley (LYV) trailhead only accessible via Four Mile Trail in 2021. One day, no doubt, your descendants will be the first to navigate the vast, icy reaches of deep space and return again. There's also a portable toilet across the road from the trailhead. After a break, it was time to climb again. Both of these trailheads are open in late July, which itself is suspicious -- something I'm The canyon continued to get deeper and deeper. Impressive relief in the open forest of Thompson Canyon. Overlooking Helen Lake and Parker Pass Creek, with the red peaks of Mount Dana and Mount Gibbs above. All of the canyons traversed in this part of the YHR were carved by glaciers thousands of years ago. These section-hikes are: More compatible with family and work commitments; Loops, and therefore logistically simpler than point-to-point itineraries; and, Less physically difficult, due to… Regan Outdoors presents: Half Dome Cables! Half Dome peaks out along the descent to Merced Lake. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until November. Overlooking Matterhorn Canyon, with Matterhorn Pass, the leftmost low point. Parking is not available at Happy Isles, Mirror Lake, or Yosemite Falls trailheads. I passed a few large groups on the trail ascending the pass. Depending on your situation, I’d recommend the Yosemite Valley, Cathedral Pass, or the more adventurous Echo Canyon route. Note that Yosemite Valley is at 3900 ft elevation, and the top rim of the valley is around 7000. (The quota refers to number of people, not number of permits.). Maybe it was the accessibility, the fact it was a newly publicized route, or something else, but it was a bit busier than the WRHR. Overlooking Upper Kerrick Meadow with Crown Point in the background. The Tuolumne Grove Trail is a 2.2 mile out-and-back hike in Yosemite National Park that displays many giant sequoias, both living and dead. 4. I was able to sit out without a headnet and enjoy the sunset and dinner. This isn’t the tricky side, but it still looks pretty steep! Quisque sapien velit, aliquet eget commodo nec, auctor a sapien. Trail Rehabilitation & Access Yosemite’s vast trail network covers hundreds of miles and leads up mountain slopes and along rivers, through forests and to waterfall spray zones. Tuolumne Meadows is the end point.. We chatted for a bit, relating experiences -- he called the SHR the “best hike he’d ever done,” but validated me with an “anything from Skurka must be pretty out there”; discussing the difficulties of off trail travel -- “you have to pay attention to every single step”; and he shared the harrowing story of aiding in the recovery of a body at Iceberg Lake near Mammoth. Except for some bland approach miles and a brief on-trail connector, the South Loop is sustained, difficult, and remarkably scenic. OBOFRT Trailhead vs. Rockslides Trailhead. Looking back across “clean slabs,” a lovely section of walking. Reviews. If the date you wish to start is listed, the trailhead is full for that day; if the date is missing, the trailhead is available for at least one person. This trip report covers a two-part section hike I undertook in the summer of 2019 of the Yosemite High Route, a 150-ish mile off-trail hiking route circling Yosemite National Park.As far as I’m aware this is the first detailed trip report … An awesome view of Ragged Peak above Conness Creek. After knocking a couple of microwave-sized boulders loose, I did my best to skirt the talus on its edges, testing rocks before trusting them with my weight. While today was one monster climb and then a lot of traversing, tomorrow was going to be a more consistent climb-descend pattern. In completion, it's a thorough tour of the park. I climbed across the ridge, as described in the guidebook, until I found the top of the chute. 1. View from partway up Don’t Be a Smart Pass. trailhead not accessible in 2022, Ostrander (Lost Bear Meadow) 1. Atop Willow Pass, a broad plateau dividing these two canyons. From this angle, just downstream, you get a slightly different view of the glacier, and a clear view of the typical climbing route up Mount Lyell. I ran into a northbound hiker while crossing the snowfield, Josh. I pushed on until Triple Peak Fork, where I made camp under fading light. In today's 26 miles, I had climbed and descended a total of 17,000 feet of elevation, including more than 10,000 feet climbed. Driving Directions: The Hite Cove trailhead is on highway 140, 8.5 miles (13.5 km) west of Yosemite's El Portal border (10.5 miles west of the ticket gate, which is a couple miles inside the park) and 21 miles (33 km) east of Mariposa. The section from Quartzite Mountain to Lyell Canyon is especially spectacular. After reading both guides, I settled on the Yosemite High Route for a few reasons: I was concerned about three sections of the KCHBR in a high snow year: King Col, the Enchanted Gorge, and the crossing of the Middle Fork of the King’s River. The Yosemite Creek Campground trailhead is for all destinations southbound on the trail along Yosemite Creek. Yosemite is is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts of all calibers. I think you should save it for a standalone trip. This is the fourth high route for which he has published a thorough guide, the others being the King's Canyon High Basin Route, the Wind River High Route, and the Pfiffner Traverse. This climb is an ass-kicker. I’m beginning my hike outside Yosemite, but will end my hike in Yosemite. Looking down on a little meadow along the JMT. Yosemite issues permits for specific trailheads on specific days, rather than for individual campsites. Adair Lake, with large talus on the continent canyons in the Half... Visitors to Return to the Visitor parking across the Road from the tarn just north of Canyon... Families and solo adventurers alike Maclure and the bergschrund little Yosemite Valley, the. Cut my hand on the way down from Keyes Peak Pass, I’d recommend skip. 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