5 Days

Mileage | Rating

28 Miles



Meeting Location | Time

Half Dome Village
3 PM


Yosemite Icons Backpacking

Highlights: For the hiker wanting to see it all, the Yosemite Icons trip offers stunning views of Yosemite’s most famous landmarks from rarely seen perspectives. Experience the adrenalin rush of peering over the sheer 3,000 foot face of El Capitan –the mecca of rock climbers around the world. Feel the mist of the roaring Yosemite Falls as you stand over the water plunging nearly 1500 feet to the pool below making it one of the tallest freefalling waterfalls in the world. Have lunch while gazing down on the granite bubble North Dome and relax while watching the sun set on the valley from Eagle Peak. As the light fades on the last night, curl up into your sleeping bag and watch the luminous pink alpenglow light up the face of Half Dome looming over your camp along Snow Creek. This is a bucket list backpacking trip that let’s you get up close and personal with scenes most people only see on postcards in the gift shop.

Check Out the Yosemite Icons Backpacking Experience!


Day 1: On the first day you will meet your guide in Half Dome Village within Yosemite Valley. While staying in the Yosemite Valley backpacker’s camp you will get acquainted with the group, gear and trip logistics. Once camp is set up, clients are free to explore short Yosemite Valley hikes per the recommendation of the guide and/or dine at one of Yosemite Valley’s food establishments.

Day 2: We will get a casual start and stop by the Yosemite Lodge for a quick coffee and breakfast before heading up 3.2 miles up one of Yosemite’s most classic trails out of the valley gaining ~2,500 feet ascending to the top of Yosemite Falls. This trail, albeit a tough climb, provides excellent views of Half Dome, Glacier Point and Yosemite Valley and is the only place to get a picture of Yosemite Falls and Half Dome in the same frame. From the top you will have the opportunity to scale out and watch the falls plummet thousands of feet to the pools below. From here, we will hike about another half mile and set up camp next to the babbling Yosemite Creek.
Miles: ~4.6 Elevation: +~2,820

Day 3: Wake up to a delicious breakfast, before packing a considerably lighter day pack and hiking up about 800 feet over 4.5 miles toward El Capitan where you can experience the summit of the world’s largest granite monolith without taking the hard route climbing up the face. If you’re lucky, you may even see one of Yosemite’s world famous rock climbers topping out after days on the wall. After lunch at the top, we will descend 4.5 miles back to our camp and maybe even head over to Eagle Peak for sunset if time allows.
Miles: ~8.4 Elevation: +~800ft. -~800ft. (optional additional hike to Eagle Peak)

Day 4: Today will be our longest day as we will leave camp in the morning and climb up to Yosemite Point -a famous viewpoint within the park showcasing Half Dome, the valley and the dramatic Clark Range. We will then hike 5 miles ascending ~1,000 feet along the rim of Yosemite Valley and enjoy ever changing views of the granite below. We’ll have lunch looking out over North Dome, across from the face of Half Dome. Finally, we will continue another 5 miles along Indian Ridge past Basket Dome and Indian Rock to the Snow Creek Junction then down to our campsite where will catch the sun setting on the looming face of Half Dome for a delicious dinner.
Miles: ~10 miles Elevation: +~1,720; -~1,700

Day 5: We will descend 2.5 miles and about 2,600 feet in the morning light in front of Half Dome back to the Yosemite Valley floor along the Tenaya River past Mirror Lake, now at the foot of the enormous face of Half Dome. We will then hike along the Mirror Lake trail back towards Half Dome Village. Miles: ~5 Elevation: -~2,600ft.

Required shuttle costs are included in the above costs. We also include backpacks, sleeping bags, tents, pads, and eating utensils at NO EXTRA COST as needed. Lastly, all profits from our guided trips go towards our non-profit youth summer camp program.

Note: All trips are subject to Lasting Adventures obtaining the necessary wilderness permits. Although our success rate is 98%, should we not obtain the exact trail-head, a trip of equal quality will be obtained. Should weather, fire, and/or delayed seasonal openings affect the chosen itinerary, a different itinerary will be offered. You will be kept in contact throughout this process.

2017 SNOWPACK UPDATE: Our snowpack this winter is at 180% and growing. We anticipate a late opening for the Yosemite High Country with snow prevalent into July and beyond at higher elevations. River, creek, and waterfall flow will be at high and sometimes dangerous levels. Any trips through mid-late June can be impacted and back-up itineraries will be offered when necessary.

*All trips are pending permit availability which we gain 24-weeks in advance. Please refrain from making travel arrangements until we have confirmed dates.



Departure Dates from Half Dome Village: