Cathedral Range Trek
Yosemite, California5.0 (8 reviews)
- Famous Summits
- Alpine Trekking
- Iconic Views
- Start/End in Tuolumne Meadows
- All Encompassing Experience of Yosemite
- Amazing Natural & Cultural History
This longer Yosemite Backpacking trip is an excellent option for those with a bit more time to spend on the trail and who want to have an all-encompassing experience of Yosemite National Park. It isn’t necessarily more difficult than other treks but you will get to see and experience more of Yosemite’s Backcountry splendor, and enjoy many of the iconic highlights of the “Range of Light” including the summit of famous Half Dome!
This epic adventure traverses the heart of the Cathedral Range from Tuolumne Meadows up to the high Vogelsang region and then down the beautiful Lewis Creek Canyon to picturesque Merced Lake and along the shores of the cascading Merced River. The route then circles back around the western flank of the Cathedral Range and summits Half Dome, Yosemite’s most popular summit, on the world famous “Cable Route.” It then heads back through the northern Cathedral Range past such iconic Sierra peaks as Tressider, Cathedral, and Echo before returning to Tuolumne Meadows in one of the most beautiful and all-encompassing Yosemite Backpacking trips we offer.
NEED TO KNOW: YOSEMITE PERMITS
Yosemite issues backcountry permits 5.5 months in advance. It’s beneficial to register before permits are issued and if you do, we recommend not making concrete travel arrangements until the permit is secured. We have a very good success rate with Yosemite permits, but if unsuccessful your deposit is 100% transferrable or refundable.
$1675 Per Person
DIFFICULTY LEVEL 4
Our difficulty ratings are based on a scale of 1-5, tours with a rating of 1 being least difficult, tours with a rating of 5 being most difficult
- Backpack Weight:
- 35-45 pounds
- Daily Hiking Distances:
- 6-9 miles
- Most Elevation Loss:
- 3500 feet
- Most Elevation Gain:
- 2500 feet
- Quality of Trails:
- Well maintained
- This well maintained trail system begins by following the Tuolumne River through flat open meadows with dirt tracks and occasional granite slabs. A forested and rocky section leads upward through switchbacks to the more open High Country with rocky and sandy trails leading to lake basins. An slick, cobble-stoned segment leads down th Merced where a flatter rocky section leads down the Merced River Canyon to the Half Dome Trail. Here, after long, switchbacks through the forest, a steep, exposed staircase-like trail ascends a large granite dome to the base of the Cables. The final 400 ft. to the summit of Half Dome follow two parallel cables raised on metal posts up a 45 degree slope of smooth, boot polished granite. Returning to the forest, an ascent through thick trees and a dirt trail on forest duff leads to more open meadows and sandy lake basins lead to another switchbacked, rocky, forested descent to Tuolumne Meadows.
- be active and healthy
- regularly exercise vigorously
- be comfortable hiking, biking, running, or swimming for several hours without many breaks
SOLITUDE LEVEL 2
1 least solitude, 5 most solitude
We rate this Yosemite backpacking trip a solitude 2. You can expect as much as an hour of solitude at a time.Learn More about our Rating System
TRAVEL TO YOSEMITE VALLEY BACKPACKERS CAMP
This trip meets in Yosemite Valley in the parking lot of Curry Village near the bear boxes at shuttle stop 14 at 6PM on Day 1. Your guide will contact you approximately 10 days before your trip to coordinate this rendezvous and answer any last minute questions you have. Your guide will be waiting for you in a Wildland Trekking hat and shirt. This trip includes dinner and camping that night at the backpackers camp. Personal vehicles can remain parked at Curry Village during your trip.
Most of our guests rent vehicles or drive their own to Yosemite Valley. However, you can also travel to and from Yosemite National Park using train and bus options from much of California:
From Fresno: Yosemite Area Rapid Transit (YARTS) is offering 4 bus rides each direction from Fresno to Yosemite Valley. To reach the Yosemite Valley Backpackers Camp get off at Curry Village and either walk or take a national park shuttle to North Pines Campground. Walk to the back of the campground and across the footbridge to the camp.
From Other California Cities: by rail on the Amtrak San Joaquin Train to the city of Merced (serviced by most large cities in California) or by Amtrak “Thruway” Bus Service from Merced to Yosemite Valley. To book your trip, use Amtrak’s Online Reservation Service to book round-trip Amtrak travel to “YOS” (Yosemite Valley).
California does not charge sales tax on services, so there is no sales tax for this trip.
All trips in Yosemite National Park have a 5% fee required by the National Park Service. This fee is applied when your reservation is made and is passed through directly to the national park.
There are no other taxes or fees associated with this trip. Feel free to give us a call at 1-800-715-HIKE (4453) with any questions!
Traveling in perfect company is a wonderful thing! With our private trip offerings you can book a trip exclusively for your group. Whether it’s with family, friends or colleagues, private trips are a fun and enriching way to explore the outdoors.
Private trip pricing is based on a sliding scale, depending on the number of people in your party. Rates are per person and do not include sales tax and national park fees (where applicable) or guide gratuity. Give us a call at 800-715-HIKE to get the ball rolling!
Private Rates FOr This Trip
- 2 People: Rate x 2
- 3 People: Rate x 1.3
- 4 People: Rate x 1.1
- 5+ People: Rate x 1
*all rates are per person