Highlights: Our 6-Day Yosemite Summer Camp, also known as our High Country Adventure, is designed for participants ages 13-17 who are both new or experienced backpackers. Most trips travel from the Yosemite high country in Tuolumne Meadows to the Yosemite Valley. This Yosemite adventure includes camping and hiking beside high alpine lakes, rivers, waterfalls, and meadows. Most trips have an opportunity to summit a major peak and/or partake in some spectacular sunsets amongst some spectacular geological formations. Risk-taking and challenges complimented by fun and support from others lead to a positive adventure for all.
Day 1: Meet your Guides/Counselors between 12-1. Get acquainted with the group and with gear. Group orientation and pack out. Hike 5.5 flat miles into Lyell Canyon and locate a campsite along the Tuolumne River. Evening games followed by 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, map review, goal setting, etc.) we will embark on one of our more strenuous days of uphill as we travel from 8900′ on the Tuolumne River to 10,130′ at the Vogelsang High Sierra Camp. Although a strenuous day, our trail breaks today reward us with stunning views of the Eastern Sierra vistas as we relax besides mountain creeks, wildflowers, and high alpine lakes. After traveling a total of 6.3 miles we will set-up camp in the Backpackers near Vogelsang High Sierra Camp. Participants will enjoy the rewards at this ever-popular location within the Yosemite backcountry.
Day 3: The trail now meanders downhill 2.2 miles besides Fletcher Creek before crossing the creek in a spectacular meadow where we will break for some group games. Another 2.3 miles and one more creek crossing will get us to Babcock Lake at 8885′. Babcock Lake sits between 2 granite walls and offers a chance for fishing, swading, exploring. Afternoon activities followed by Fish Tacos if we are lucky tonight!
Day 4: Today we will get an early start for a long day on the trail. We will begin by continuing our gradual descent through the Yosemite backcountry as we drop to Merced Lake at 7212′. Along the way there will be more spectacular views and after traveling approximately 4-miles we will take a lunch and a water break at the creek junction with Merced Lake. After lunch we will travel another 4.6 mainly flat and gradual downhill miles along the Merced River to a spot at Twin Bridges. Participants are rewarded with swading in a beautiful pool of water after this long trail day totaling near 9-miles.
Day 5: Day 5 will also begin early as we have Half Dome on the itinerary this afternoon. We will hike approximately 4-miles to Little Yosemite Valley at 6,140′ where we will establish camp. We will also take a break and eat lunch by the river as we prepare for Half Dome. Half Dome is a 7-mile roundtrip hike from Little Yosemite Valley that we will complete with only our smaller day and fanny packs. A sunset on the summit of Half Dome is common as we descend the cables and Sub-Dome in the remaining light. We return to camp and spend some final waking moments sharing in our experiences along the beach near the river.
Day 6: On our final day we will descend to the Yosemite Valley at 4,000′ via the famous Mist trail and passing directly by both Nevada Fall and Vernal Fall for a total of 4-miles. We will then head to the Curry Village parking lot to unpack, and celebrate in a pizza lunch.
Note: Remember this is only a sample itinerary and Half Dome is only offered pending us gaining the necessary permits.
Other: On all of our Yosemite summer camps, we have a 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.
“Great people, great guides. Overall great everything. One of the coolest experiences of my life. I had the most incredible time backpacking.”
“They really enjoyed the counselors, exploring Yosemite and being out in nature for a glorious 6 days.”
“My 15 year old son just got home today from backpacking with Lasting Adventures for 6 days in Yosemite and he was full of enthusiasm over the trip!”