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Experience Level

Easy

Hiking

1-3 miles/day

Elevation

9,200 feet

Registration Fee

$165

Program Overview: On this guided overnight trip, you’ll get to experience a natural treasure — Yosemite’s night skies — during the largest meteor shower of the year!

After meeting up with your trip leader and fellow adventurers, you’ll hike about a mile from the May Lake Trailhead. You’ll set up camp at a spot with a clear view of the sky, at an elevation where it won’t get too cold to sleep outside under the stars. As night falls, your naturalist will use a laser pointer to single out specific stars and constellations, and you’ll get to search the sky for distant planets and meteors — all from the comfort of your sleeping bag. The program curriculum focuses on astronomy (including but not limited to star science, constellations, planetary science, perception of light/how light travels, meteors, meteorites, etc.), as well as story, lore, mythology rooted in cultures both locally and across the world. Watch for the bright meteors of the Perseids shower as debris from the comet known as Swift-Tuttle blazes into Earth’s atmosphere. The Perseids peak in mid-August, coinciding with the new moon cycle — this is the perfect timing for this one-night adventure!

Pack your sleeping gear, a tent (just in case!), and simple meals, such as premade sandwiches, and prepare to be dazzled by what you can see in just one night out in the mountains.

Know Before You Go:

  • Program dates: Backpack trip begins Saturday, August 10 at 4pm and concludes Sunday, August 11 at 10am.
  • Program location: May Lake
  • What’s included: One of night backpacking with guided instruction by a Yosemite Naturalist, Wilderness permit, and park entry (as needed). There is no discount if you choose not to use the included gate pass.
  • Experience level: All levels welcome, must be physically fit to walk at elevation with a backpack.

What’s not included:

  • Gear or meals during your program.
  • Transportation.

View a suggested packing list.