Home A - Z FAQ Bookstore Art Prints Online Library Discussion Forum Muir Weather Maps Lodging About Search
CalHotels.US--online reservations now CalHotels.US Lowest Hotel Rates Guaranteed. Click Here For Yours!
Hotel photos, maps, reviews, & discount rates.

U.S. Hotels in California (Yosemite, L. A., San Francisco ), AL, AK, AR, AS, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, FM, GA, GU, HI, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NE, NH, NJ, NY, OK, NV, MH, MP, NM, NC, ND, OH, OR, PA, PR, PW, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, VI WA, WV, WI, WY

[Yosemite]

1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Hiking, backpacking, running, biking, climbing, rafting, and other human-powered activities in Yosemite National Park

Moderators: Wickett, dan

1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby andrewcbrown » Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:41 am

I am surprising my daughter with a backpacking trip to Yosemite for her birthday. We live in Kentucky and have done several multiple day hikes in the Smokies. I got our wilderness permit and trying to work through a few details. We are flying into SFO on September 10th and will be arriving in Yosemite around dusk. We are going to take advantage of the backpacker's campground Tuolumne Meadows on the first night. We are going to use Sunrise Lake trail to go to Cloud Rest. We were planning on finishing on the Mist trail back to valley on the 14th.

Here are my questions:
The Hikers bus ends it's service on September the 11th for the year. How can we get back to our car Tuolumne Meadows? Are there other options besides hitchhiking?

Will there be enough space to hang hammocks in the backpacker's campground Tuolumne Meadows since we will be arriving late?

Thanks for you help in advance.
andrewcbrown
First-timer
First-timer
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:22 am

Re: 1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby Peasy » Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:45 am

I'm not sure about the bus situation but I can tell you that there were hammocks in the TM backpackers camp when we were there last month. Shouldn't be a problem. Also, hikers in general are awesome people. They will make room for you, if they can.
Peasy
Regular
Regular
 
Posts: 15
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2016 2:31 pm

Re: 1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby MadDiver » Thu Aug 18, 2016 8:21 pm

For transportation there doesn't appear to be many options. With the hiker's shuttle ended and even YARTS only on weekend service you're kinda SOL. You could reverse things though: Pick-up permit in the Valley on the 10th and stay at the North Pines backpacker camp, shuttle to Tuolumne Meadows via the hiker bus on the morning of the 11th then hike back to your car in the Valley. The downside to this is it deprives you of a night's sleep at altitude to help acclimation but I'm not sure what other choice you have except if you were to get to the Valley early enough, park, and pick-up your permit you could get the 5PM YARTS to Tuolumne Meadows and camp at the TM backpackers' camp.

Speaking of the permit you said "arriving in Yosemite around dusk". I believe the permit station is open until 5PM https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/ ... ations.htm and you'll need your permit to stay in the backpacker's camp... so you may want to amend "around dusk" to "before 5" (at the Valley permit office, not the park entrance). If arriving later you could try to call them and make an arrangement, it's worth a phone call.

A question: It looks like you're doing 4 days/3nights on the trail, are you doing Half Dome? Just curious because straight from Sunrise trailhead to the Valley is really a 3day 2night thing (at the most... some would do it in 2:1, heck some folks do the whole thing as a dayhike...). So if you'd share your intended itinerary the peeps here will help you get the most out of your trip - not necessarily mileage, just the "best" :D

OH, need to mention: bear cannister. You are REQUIRED to carry one (can be rented cheap at permit office).

Logistical nightmare but we'll get ya through it :)
MadDiver
Very frequent poster
Very frequent poster
 
Posts: 98
Joined: Sun Apr 05, 2015 5:26 pm

Re: 1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby zona32 » Fri Aug 19, 2016 12:49 am

New to this board and also first time backpacking Yosemite AND we are in a similar predicament...

My brothers and I (3 of us) have permits on Thursday 9/15-Sat 9/17 from Tuolumne to the Valley, exiting Mist trail. Original plan was to park in the Valley and take hiker's bus but just found out that service ends the Monday before we are arriving. Originally, Day 1 Cathedral Lakes, camp at Sunrise Lakes; Day 2 Cloud's Rest then camp at junction of JMT-half dome by Sunrise Creek; Day 3 Half dome early and back to the valley. If we stick to this, we will not be leaving Yosemite until 7pm-ish [5pm YARTS back to Tuolumne], with another 6 hr+ drive ahead of us to Orange County (my brother has an early LAX flight next morning).

What do you guys think about hiking back to Tuolumne? Day 1 Cathedral lakes to as close to JMT-half dome junction and camp; Day 2 early Half-dome, then to Cloud's Rest and camp at Sunrise Lakes; Day 3 hike back to Cathedral and out and probably leaving Yosemite around 3-4pm instead? And if so, do we need to request a change in permit because we are exiting a different trailhead (are they that strict?).

Any thoughts/suggestions greatly appreciated!
zona32
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2016 12:34 am

Re: 1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby Grzldvt » Sat Aug 20, 2016 11:12 pm

andrewcbrown wrote:I am surprising my daughter with a backpacking trip to Yosemite for her birthday. We live in Kentucky and have done several multiple day hikes in the Smokies. I got our wilderness permit and trying to work through a few details. We are flying into SFO on September 10th and will be arriving in Yosemite around dusk. We are going to take advantage of the backpacker's campground Tuolumne Meadows on the first night. We are going to use Sunrise Lake trail to go to Cloud Rest. We were planning on finishing on the Mist trail back to valley on the 14th.

Here are my questions:
The Hikers bus ends it's service on September the 11th for the year. How can we get back to our car Tuolumne Meadows? Are there other options besides hitchhiking?

Will there be enough space to hang hammocks in the backpacker's campground Tuolumne Meadows since we will be arriving late?

Thanks for you help in advance.

A couple of questions - Arriving in Yosemite Valley at dusk? Assume you are renting a car? Why drive to Toulumne that night. See if you can get a campsite on the Valley floor, take the bus up the next morning and the car will be on the Valley floor when you return
Thoughts?
Steve
Grzldvt
Veteran-poster
Veteran-poster
 
Posts: 306
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 10:18 pm
Location: San Jose, CA

Re: 1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby Grzldvt » Sun Aug 21, 2016 12:02 am

zona32 wrote:New to this board and also first time backpacking Yosemite AND we are in a similar predicament...

My brothers and I (3 of us) have permits on Thursday 9/15-Sat 9/17 from Tuolumne to the Valley, exiting Mist trail. Original plan was to park in the Valley and take hiker's bus but just found out that service ends the Monday before we are arriving. Originally, Day 1 Cathedral Lakes, camp at Sunrise Lakes; Day 2 Cloud's Rest then camp at junction of JMT-half dome by Sunrise Creek; Day 3 Half dome early and back to the valley. If we stick to this, we will not be leaving Yosemite until 7pm-ish [5pm YARTS back to Tuolumne], with another 6 hr+ drive ahead of us to Orange County (my brother has an early LAX flight next morning).

What do you guys think about hiking back to Tuolumne? Day 1 Cathedral lakes to as close to JMT-half dome junction and camp; Day 2 early Half-dome, then to Cloud's Rest and camp at Sunrise Lakes; Day 3 hike back to Cathedral and out and probably leaving Yosemite around 3-4pm instead? And if so, do we need to request a change in permit because we are exiting a different trailhead (are they that strict?).

Any thoughts/suggestions greatly appreciated!

You don't have to worry about exiting a different trail head, do your alternative, it is so much better. I won't get on your case , but newbies have a tendency to want to hike down the the Valley Floor. Horrible idea, you are cranking down a 3000 foot staircase. Stay in the high country. If you need to see the Valley floor, drive back down, park in Day use and day hike a trail that encircles the Valley floor. Why put yourself through a torturous 3000 foot drop.
Steve
Grzldvt
Veteran-poster
Veteran-poster
 
Posts: 306
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 10:18 pm
Location: San Jose, CA

Re: 1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby zona32 » Sun Aug 21, 2016 9:16 pm

Thanks so much Steve! Makes total sense, just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing anything.

A few quick questions:
1. Thoughts on carrying backpack up Half-Dome? Varying opinions and all make sense. What about just leaving stuff at campsite, hit HD early, then come back to pack up?
2. If people leave their bags down, how do you carry water up? Don't want to bring an extra day pack for just for the climb.
3. When people talk about leaving bag and stuff all open at night so bears don't tear through it, I'm assuming they mean just unzip compartments and leave top wide open? Or should everything essentially be taken out so its empty?

Again, appreciate it greatly!
zona32
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2016 12:34 am

Re: 1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby Grzldvt » Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:20 pm

zona32 wrote:Thanks so much Steve! Makes total sense, just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing anything.

A few quick questions:
1. Thoughts on carrying backpack up Half-Dome? Varying opinions and all make sense. What about just leaving stuff at campsite, hit HD early, then come back to pack up?
2. If people leave their bags down, how do you carry water up? Don't want to bring an extra day pack for just for the climb.
3. When people talk about leaving bag and stuff all open at night so bears don't tear through it, I'm assuming they mean just unzip compartments and leave top wide open? Or should everything essentially be taken out so its empty?

Again, appreciate it greatly!

#1 I wouldn't carry a full blown pack up up Half Dome, the stairs are a cattle drive with people. I like leaving the pack at your site and coming back.
#2 For carrying water, I have the Nalgene bottle with a loop, and use a Carabiner to hook it to a belt loop. I also have a 1.5 liter water bottle holder that has a long strap, that I put around my neck/shoulder
Does you main pack come apart ad have a day pack? The top of my big pack unzips and becomes a nice day pack.
#3 You got it... They may come in and inspect the pack, and if it is all unzipped won't tear into it. I empty the pockets, but leave the clothes in the main.
We also take our canisters about 25 - 50 yards out, and a very clean camp. By that I mean pots and pans are all in one spot, not a lot of "stuff" all over the place. When my camp has been neat and clean, the bears seem to just move on, when there is "stuff" all over the place they come in to see what's there.
Steve
Grzldvt
Veteran-poster
Veteran-poster
 
Posts: 306
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 10:18 pm
Location: San Jose, CA

Re: 1st time backpacking in Yosemite

Postby zona32 » Mon Aug 22, 2016 10:12 pm

Great advice and insight, thanks so much! Really love this forum.
So pumped about this trip!
zona32
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2016 12:34 am


Return to Yosemite Hiking & Backpacking

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests