Highlights: Our Young Adventurer’s 6 day Summer Youth Programs are designed for the younger participants, ages 11-13, who are both new or experienced backpackers. These summer youth adventure camps start in Tuolumne Meadows on Sundays and in Yosemite Valley on Mondays. Both programs end in Yosemite Valley. These programs will offer shorter hiking distances and an introduction to camping, backpacking, and the outdoors amongst the natural geological formations surrounding us in the Yosemite high country.
This is a Sample Itinerary only.
Day 1:Meet your Guides/Counselors between 12-1pm. Get acquainted with the group and with gear. Group orientation and relocation to the Yosemite Valley Backpackers Campsite for the evening. Yosemite Valley tour including geological and natural highlights. Evening activities and campfire to strengthen bonds while goal setting and an introduction to the Yosemite wilderness and history through storytelling.
Day 2: After morning circle time (stretches and goal setting) we will catch the morning shuttle to the trailhead near Tenaya Lake. Take in the views at Tenaya Lake (8,150’) before hiking up a total of 3.3 moderate miles to May Lake. May Lake is a high alpine lake at 9,329’. The designated backpackers campsites are along the south shore of the lake. There are seasonally operating flush toilets and a fresh water tap here. A side hike of 1.5 miles to the top of Mount Hoffman (10,850’) is available this afternoon. (Mount Hoffman is the geographical center of Yosemite National Park and was also John Muir’s favorite summit view.) Also at this location: swading, group games, and taking in an amazing sunset on the secret bluff which looks east across the Yosemite high country.
Day 3: Hike south and mainly downhill a total of 8 miles (as we cross back over Tioga Road/Hwy 120) to the top of Snow Creek Falls (6,720′). Here we will camp in a campsite alongside a creek and directly across the valley from Half Dome. This site provides for some amazing views of Half Dome and down into the Yosemite Valley. This site and trail is used lesser than many of the other trails in and around the valley which provides for some more solitude.
Day 4: On this day, participants will hike back uphill along Snow Creek to a campsite near the top of Lehamite Creek. This is approximately 3-miles. From this campsite the youth will explore Indian Rock (8522′) and North Dome at 7542′ and overlooking the Yosemite Valley.
Day 5: On day 5 we will hike approximately 4-moderate miles to the west and to a campsite above Yosemite Falls. On the way we will stop at the famous Yosemite Point 6,936′ for spectacular views of the Yosemite Valley. After setting up the campsite we will take a short hike to the viewing location at the top of Yosemite Falls.
Day 6: After breakfast and packing-up we will descend the famous Yosemite Fall trail approximately 4 total miles downhill into Yosemite Valley. The group will then catch a shuttle back to our ending location at Half Dome/Curry Village.
Note: Remember this is only a sample itinerary.
Other: On all of our summer youth programs we have daily circle time in the morning where youth engage in group games, share highlights, offer praise to each other, stretch, review maps and day itineraries, and set individual and group goals for the day. Also, whether breaking on the trail or in the afternoon or evening in the campsite, our Guides also facilitate additional opportunities for youth to develop a personal connection with nature. Problem-solving and initiative games are common as are smiles. Additional outdoor skills are gained as we practice Leave no Trace principles and promote environmental stewardship throughout the length of the program.
Our Monday through Saturday program both begins and ends in Half Dome Village within Yosemite Valley. Drop-off is Mondays at 12pm and pick-up is on Saturdays at 12-1pm in the Half Dome Village pizza patio.
Scholarship Application – Every youth deserves this opportunity!