Yosemite Sierra Hiker
California USA: (ZZ-HKW09)
An Inn & Tent Cabin Hiking Adventure
Explore two of California s finest natural wonders, Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks, located along the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada. Encompassing sparing peaks, alpine lakes, and stands of giant sequoia trees, these parks provide a stunning landscape where mountains extend into a seemingly endless sky.
This trip has been created with plenty of flexibility to accommodate a wide range of individual interests and abilities. We have chosen non-technical day hikes for the reasonably athletic, and that best reflect the variety and scenic beauty that make up these extraordinary parklands. So join us for a week of active days and luxurious nights that is sure to quench your appetite for adventure and relaxation.
Beautifully crafted of cedar and stone and located within Sequoia National Park, Wuksachi Lodge is perched on a rocky outcropping some 7,200 feet above sea level with panoramic views of the high Sierra. Situated on the banks of the Merced River and at the doorstep to the national park, Yosemite View Lodge provides all the comforts of home. The Toulomne tent cabins bring back memories of Yosemite as the pioneers experienced it.
How difficult is this trip? ... Really. This terrain on this trip is hillier and more challenging than our Easy tours. It is intended for the average active adult who feels comfortable exercising 5-8 hours a day. The hikes are 4-12.5 miles, with additional miles optional, and include climbs of up to 1200 feet with options of up to 1500 feet.
Beautifully crafted of cedar and stone and located within Sequoia National Park, Wuksachi Lodge is perched on a rocky outcropping some 7,200 feet above sea level with panoramic views of the high Sierra. The Appletree Inn is a quaint cottage style resort situated on 11 wooded acres. Situated on the banks of the Merced River and at the doorstep to the national park, Yosemite View Lodge provides all the comforts of home.
Day 1 and 2: Wuksachi Lodge
Day 3 and 4: Yosemite View Lodge
Day 5: Tuolumne Tent Cabins
Day 1. Hike to Giant Forest and Moro Rock in Sequoia National Park, Wuksachi Lodge
For a real taste of solitude, we begin with a hike
into the backcountry of Sequoia National Park. From Giant Forest we
meander through one of the most majestic stands of Sequoia trees in the
world. The General Sherman Tree, the world's largest living thing,
towers above our path. Stroll through beautiful Crescent Meadow where
brilliant wildflowers adorn its lush grounds. John Muir is said to have
called this lovely, grassy open area the "gem of the Sierra". Now we
connect with the High Sierra Trail, with incredible breathtaking views
that make this a favorite of the Sierra's backcountry enthusiasts. After
an exhilarating climb up Moro Rock, complete with steps and railings in
places, we shuttle just a few miles to Wuksachi Lodge, located in the
heart of Sequoia National Park.
- Hike from Giant Forest to High Sierra Trail and to Moro Rock [up to 6 miles, 500 feet of elevation gain/loss]
- Moro Rock option [600' climb, then descent]
Day 2. Hike to Pear Lake, Sequoia National Park,Wuksachi Lodge
After a hearty breakfast and a short shuttle to the trailhead, we ascend through rich forest of white fir, cedar and sugar pine enroute to the high country. We’ll be traveling along the famed Watchtower route where we can see far into the Tokopah Valley, where the biggest waterfall in the park, Tokopah Falls, tumbles over 1000 feet. Above tree line, Heather, Aster, and Emerald lakes will welcome us along the way to Pear Lake. After enjoying lunch at our high country location, we descend back to the trailhead and enjoy a second relaxing evening at Wuksachi Lodge.
• Pear Lake hike [12.4 miles; 2250 feet of elevation
Day 3. Hike in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park, Yosemite View Lodge
Shuttle from Sequoia National Park to Yosemite National Park [4 hours]
Mariposa Grove Hike [4 miles, 800 feet of elevation gain/loss]
Shuttle to Yosemite Valley [1 hour, 15 minutes]
After a morning shuttle to Yosemite, we hike in
Mariposa, the Park's largest of three groves of Giant Sequoias. Mariposa
Grove contains several hundred of these monarchs, including two of the
25 largest trees in the world. We begin the hike at The Fallen Monarch which fell more
than three hundred years ago and continues to resist the process of
The Bachelor and Three Graces are a group of four trees,
three of them growing very close together with the fourth a little more
distant. Their roots are so intertwined that if one of them were to
fall it would likely bring the others along with it. The Grizzly Giant is the Grove's oldest tree and most
commonly thought to be the largest but that title goes to a less
inspiring tree named The Washington Tree. Estimated at 2700 years old,
the Grizzly Giant is 209 feet tall and 25.5 feet in diameter. The California Tunnel Tree was cut in 1895 to allow
coaches to pass through it (and as a marketing scheme to attract
visitors to the grove), and is now the only living tree with a tunnel in
it since the fall of the Wawona Tunnel Tree in 1969. The Faithful Couple is a rare case in which two trees
grew so close together that their trunks have fused together at the
base. The Telescope Tree has been left completely hollow by
decades of repeated fires. In spite of that, the tree is still living,
as Giant Sequoias do not require a whole trunk to survive. It is
possible to walk inside the tree and to look up at the sky. The Columbia
Tree is the tallest tree in the grove and in Yosemite National Park.
We continue our day with a late afternoon shuttle to
Yosemite Valley, the site of our lodging for the next two nights.
Day 4. Hike the Panorama Trail from Rim to Valley in Yosemite National Park, Yosemite View Lodge
You couldn't ask for a better way to experience the
majestic splendor that Yosemite has to offer than by hiking the Panorama
Trail. As its name implies, this trail offers incredibly panoramic
views of Yosemite's cascading waterfalls, soaring granite monoliths and
of the verdant valley floor below.
Beginning with views of Half Dome and Clouds Rest from
Glacier Point, the trail crosses behind Illilouette Fall after two miles
and continues partially uphill along the Panorama Cliff. At the top of
Nevada Fall, we descend past Vernal Falls on the Mist Trail, concluding
at Happy Isles Nature Center.
- Panorama Trail [8.5 miles, 3200 feet of elevation loss]
Day 5. Hike to Lower Cathedral Lake from Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite National Park, Tuolumne Tent Cabins
Following a shuttle from the Valley to the high
country of Tuolumne Meadows, we begin our hike to Lower Cathedral Lake.
The trail is an ancient Indian Path and is now part of the John Muir
Trail, a famed backpacking thoroughfare. Lower Cathedral Lake is among
the most impressive of Yosemite's granite-wrapped High Sierra Lakes.
It's surrounded by Cathedral Peak to the east and by Echo and Tressider
Peaks along the southern shore, all over 10,000 feet in elevation.
The eastern shore of the lake is a wide rock shelf that,
besides being picturesque in its own right, makes a great place to hang
out and recover from the swamp crossing we executed to reach it. If you
trek to the far end of the lake, look west, Tenaya Lake lurks below.
We stay tonight in the Tuolumne Meadows Tent Cabins. Our
stay here evokes the early days of travel to Yosemite. The
canvas-covered tents are wood-framed on a cement platform. There is no
electricity but candles are provided for lighting. Shower and restroom
facilities are located in the center of camp. The dining room, situated
alongside the Tuolumne River, provides rustic a la carte dining for
breakfast and dinner.
- Shuttles from Yosemite Valley to Tuolumne Meadows [1.5 hours]
- Lower Cathedral Lake Hike [7 miles, 790 feet of elevation gain/loss]
Day 6. Hike from Tioga Road to Yosemite Falls and Yosemite Valley in Yosemite National Park, Fresno
Our final hike provides a spectacular conclusion to
our week together. Beginning at Porcupine Creek Trailhead off Tioga
Road, we hike through red fir and lodgepole forest, follow Lehamite
Creek and cross Indian Canyon Creek before arriving at Yosemite Point.
From here we have a commanding view of Yosemite Valley and of Yosemite
Creek hurling over the edge of the hanging valley in a spectacular and
deafening show of force. At 2425 feet, Yosemite Falls is North America's
We then cross Yosemite Creek on a footbridge and begin
the steep descent past the Upper Falls (1430 feet, alone one of the
world's highest), "the cascades" (675 feet) and finally the Lower Falls
(320 foot drop).
Following a shuttle to Fresno, we say our farewells at approximately 5.30pm in Fresno.
-- itinerary subject to change --
- Hiking [9.5 miles, 4000 feet of elevation loss]
- Shuttle to Fresno [2 hours, 15 minutes
Rates and Dates for Yosemite Sierra Hiker
All meals (lunch Day 1-lunch Day 6), all accommodations (double occupancy), all national park entrance fees, T-shirt, water bottle, support vehicle, and professional guides.
Transfer and Other Options:
Transfers are included from Fresno (airport hotel)
Rates do not include:
Airfare, personal insurance, hotel miscellaneous expenses (phone, fax, laundry, etc.), additional optional tours, services not specified in the tour itinerary, and guide gratuities (An appropriate gratuity to each trip leader is $75-$100 per guest).
Meeting: 8:00 a.m. at the Courtyard Fresno Airport
Airport: LAX, Fresno
What To Bring: