Join us for an unforgettable Yosemite adventure along a classic wilderness route. This challenging three-day, two-night guided backpacking trip features a tough trek through the Sierra backcountry — plus jaw-dropping views, serene wilderness settings, and the chance to learn from an experienced Yosemite naturalist.
The trip kicks off with a Thursday-evening get-together at Tuolumne Meadows Campground, where you’ll meet your guide and review the route, safety tips and Leave No Trace ethics. On Friday morning, you’ll hike into the wilderness from the Sunrise Lakes Trailhead and up to Clouds Rest, arriving at the summit with plenty of time to savor the magnificent 360-degree view.
After you descend Clouds Rest, you’ll set up camp near Sunrise Creek, your home for the next two nights. On Saturday, take advantage of the option to climb the Half Dome cables and marvel at the Valley from far above, or choose to enjoy a relaxed day exploring the area around camp. On Sunday, hike back out to Tioga Road.
For both the Clouds Rest and Half Dome climbs, you’ll hike up with only a daypack, leaving your backpack safely by the trail or at camp — and leaving you free to focus on the experience without extra weight on your shoulders!
This route offers ample opportunities to learn about Yosemite and the Sierra — and, of course, to capture incredible photos. Throughout the weekend, your leader will share tips for the trail, point out notable natural features, and offer insights stories about the park’s fascinating history, wildlife, flora and geology. Bring your curiosity … and a camera!
Included with your registration:
- An introductory meeting (7:30 pm on Thursday, September 3 at Tuolumne Meadows Campground), and three full days of guided backpacking starting and ending at from Sunrise Lakes Trailhead, near Tenaya Lake and Tuolumne Meadows (leave at 8 am on Friday, September 4 and return by 4 pm on Sunday, September 6 — actual time depends on group pace).
- Park entry (as needed).
- All required permits (Half Dome and Yosemite Wilderness) and bear-canister rental.
- Shared tent camping before and after the trip at Tuolumne Meadows Campground, if needed (Thursday, September 3 and Sunday, September 6).
- Note: Our limited campsites are for participants only. We cannot adjust the dates. The sites are shared. Tent camping only. Option to upgrade accommodations to Tuolumne Meadows Lodge for an additional fee (for Thursday, September 3 and Sunday, September 6).
- Information about upgrading your accommodations will be emailed to you after you sign up. The option expires 30 days before the program and does not offer a discount. We cannot adjust the dates.
Note: There is no discount if you choose not to use our gate pass, permits, bear-canister rentals or campsites.
Participants must have prior backpacking experience and be very physically fit. This is a 27-mile round-trip hike, with optional 9-mile Half Dome summit (14.6 miles with a full pack, 12.6 miles with a day pack). It is recommended that participants train for this trek by hiking hills or stairs carrying a heavy pack.