A moderate hike of approximately 7 miles round trip, the Cathedral Lakes trail is one of the most popular of Yosemite's high country destinations. The trail begins in Tuolumne Meadows, along Tioga Road. It starts out climbing, then it levels off. This hike is very beautiful, most of it going though the green forest and at times crossing small meadows and streams. We got to see a family of marmots (we were to see many of them while hiking Mount Hoffman the next day). The Lower Cathedral Lake is located at an elevation of 9288 feet while the Upper Lake is found at about half mile past the Lower Lake at an elevation of 9585 feet. Pack a lunch and something refreshing to drink and once you get there pick one of the two pretty lakes and enjoy basking in the sun and looking at John Muir's favourite mountain, Cathedral Peak.
Fit? Keen walker? Want to taste some of Yosemite’s more demanding hiking? Fed up of tripping over chubby, loud sweaty tourists? Short on time? Then I definitely recommend doing the Nevada Falls day-hike out from the Happy Isles campground in Yosemite Valley. Granted for the first half of the hike up to Vernal Falls you will be tripping over said loud-tourists, but observe how after resting at Vernal and continuing up on to Nevada how you loose about 95% of the hoards! You’re left on the trail with the keen hikers, people who seem genuinely happy to be here and drinking all of the place in rather than just getting their photographs and heading back down to the home comforts. When you’ve made it to Vernal, a great option is to head back down via a part of the famous John Muir Trail. It’s about a five-hour, 6.5-mile (10.5km) hike, and you’ll definitely be able to gauge your fitness on the final punishing switchbacks up to Nevada. Allow more than the five-hours, because believe you me you will want to hang around and experience some truly staggering views.
Cathedral Peak, Waterwheel Falls, etc. These are great places to be for sure, but unfortunately even in the back country, crowds of tourist congregate. Take the trail head toward Dog Lake, and continue on up to the Young Lakes for a diversion. This is a vigorous hike, so keep a light load and start early. However, if you can skip the first two lakes, you'll find at the highest altitude the third Young Lake. Surrounded by granite peaks and glaciers, the water is ice cold and tourqouise in color. Wildlife can be found here.
There are so many beautiful areas to walk and hike in Yosemite. Stop at a meadow and walk along the trails within and around it. Doubtless, if you calm your mind and let go the pressures of civilization, you'll open your eyes to the wildlife.
And hopefull you'll see the snakes before they see you.
In addition to scores of douglas firs and granite walls, Yosemite Valley also has large flat meadows such as this one. Although you cannot walk through them because it will damage the area, trails lead alongside the meadows and take you even closer to the mountains and the occasional small bodies of water that have not completely dried up during the semi arid summer months.
3214 feet up to the valley floor this is the place where everybody arrive by car... there's a parking lot to park your car after taking the road from the Valley to Wawona and taking a fork to the left.. (all is signed on the road).. but there's no much to see upthere... the best point is be proud of yourself hiking from the valley to the "top" because glacier is not the top.. i'll let u know... well after 4 hard miles you are in the middle of the crowd.. so sweat, thirsty and tired among all people well dressed and trim looking at the ravines, half dome, dry waterfalls or the main valley !!
El Capitan, an ultimate challenge for world's best climbers. This rock goes up vertically for an amazing distance. Average alpinists take appr. a week to climb to the top and sleep vertically, hanging in their sleepingbacks. From the valley, looking up, we could vagely destinguish several mountaineers as flies on a huge wall. Our guide made jokes about seeing the colour of their backpacks, jackets, trousers, helmet and ... the fact that they were wearing certain brands watches (good eyes?).
The hike to Mirror Lake can be very crowded during the day if you take the route suggested by most tour books and rangers. I prefer a small trail that starts across the parking lot from the Ahwahnee! There is a sign that points one way to Yosemite Village and the other to Mirror Lake. This trail winds its way through boulders that have fallen from the cliffs above and also takes you close to the Royal Arches cascade through which you will have to walk across in the spring so wear waterproof shoes.
Once you are in Glacier Point there are several hikes more to do.. some a easier ones or other that required a overnight. Sentinel Dome is achievable easily.. 2.2 miles hiking up there is this flatter rock plain higher to Glacier Point and offers a great view of all valley... now looking back i regret to myself not to go to Taft Point an amazing cliff over the valley absolutelly exposed to ravine.
This is one of the best trails I've ever done for its cliffs, landscapes and the
closest valley and half dome view hiking up. This trail starts in the valley
towards main campgrounds to the right just after the view of huge El Capitan
cliff. The Yosemite visitor was quite right: the hike is very strenuous, it
means 3200-foot climb in just 4.8 miles. There aren't many rest areas on the way
to Glacier's Point (the first summit) or at least not many smooth parts of the
path. It depends on your stamina: it could be so so strenuous or well worth it
to enjoy the absolutely great views during the hike!!
The Ahwahnee Yosemite National Park
16 Reviews and 751 Opinions I have often visited the Awahnee Hotel Dining room. The food is always excellent and is on par in...
Wawona Hotel Yosemite National Park
15 Reviews and 530 Opinions Just to clarify, at least several reviews have included erroneous information about who "runs" the...
E. C. Yosemite Motel Yosemite National Park
4 Reviews and 44 Opinions Yosemite Lodge is probably where most package tourists staying in the valley will stay. Rooms are...