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waterwheel falls....where next? 4 night trip

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

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waterwheel falls....where next? 4 night trip

Postby quignov » Wed Apr 04, 2007 3:06 pm

I am planning a backpacking trip, which is to include waterwheel falls on the first day and we are not sure where to go next. We want to stay north; seems to be less populated and we seek solitude. I was thinking going north of hetch hetchy and around the west end. This looks like a 4 nighter to me? Any other ideas? Like maybe further north from waterwheel falls and then east and back south? I'd love any suggestions from peeps that have hiked the northern parts of the park. We are looking at anywhere from 8-14 miles in one day. We are after beauty, not necessarily putting on miles....

I have never been to Yosemite and am basing all my knowledge off of one book and a topo map. We will be hiking in September. I also am wondering why I am having such a tough time finding information about this region of the park. Does this have anything to do with quality of the northern parts or that the basic drone-people are drawn to all the domes in the south part, where peeps don't have to actually walk to see anything...

Sincerely, I thank you for any advice.
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Re: waterwheel falls....where next? 4 night trip

Postby dan » Thu Apr 05, 2007 10:10 pm

You can continue down the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne and Pate Valley and then head up and out to White Wolf. It get's warmer as you go down, but you see fewer people after Waterwheel.

For Solitude, North is definitely the way to go. Matterhorn and Jack Main Canyons and the other canyons are beautiful and have few people passing through, even on this part of the PCT.

Actually you can backpack down to Glen Aulin and do a little side trip to Waterwheel Falls as a day hike and continue north on the PCT.

Crossing these rivers could be a problem in June or July on high water years, but in September--no problem.

If you have a car shuttle you can head out (cross-country) to Twin Lakes on the east side (it's a relatively low pass) or on trail north out of the park via Dorothy Lake onto Highway 108.

Maybe forget crowded Waterwheel Falls (and Glen Aulin and Tuolumne) this time if you really want isolation and start south from Highway 108 into the park. Guaranteed few people all the way, and free entrance into the park via the PCT.
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Postby Grzldvt » Sun Apr 08, 2007 10:14 pm

Waterwheel Falls in September, especially this year is going to be pretty much dead. This is a very low water year so I expect you will be able to walk across the Toulmne River by September. The wheels will be almost non-existent by then.
I have done Matterhorn five times, and IMO it is now overrun with people, although September will be a touch better. We had people walking by us at least once an hour about three years ago. There are very few camp sites, so it was tough to get some serious solitude.
Do you need to do a loop or can it be a point to point?
Shoot me an email and I can give you some ideas.
I have pretty much BP'ed every inch of Yosemite.
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