Yosemite’s backcountry harbors such an abundance of soaring granite peaks, waterfalls, and shimmering alpine lakes—plus, over 700,000 acres of designated wilderness and 750 miles of trails—that you can take many trips in America’s third national park without running out of five-star scenery.
Probably the most popular backpacking trip in Yosemite, this goes from Yosemite Valley to two high-demand backcountry campgrounds and tags two of the park's finest summits.
TUOLUMNE MEADOWS TO TENAYA LAKE
This roughly 30-mile traverse features the panorama of mountains from Vogelsang Pass, the beautiful canyon of the Merced River, the view of the Cathedral Range from Sunrise, and even relatively quiet sections of trail.
This 65-mile hike south of Tuolumne Meadows is arguably the best trip in the park for backpackers who are ready for a remote wilderness trek.
The Tuolumne River plunges through innumerable waterfalls and swimming holes between towering walls of granite, while the trail variously follows the river and climbs high above it.