Guided Hikes to the High Sierra Camps in Yosemite

Ranger Guided High Camp Hikes

Ranger Talk at Sunrise

Explore the Yosemite backcountry, meet new friends, and learn more about the Sierra Nevada from a NPS Ranger Naturalist on a Guided High Sierra Camp Hike. In 1923 the National Park Service proposed the organization and expansion of the High Sierra Camps to create a loop of hikers’ camps accessible by ranger guided organized groups. The tradition of the Ranger Guided Hikes continues to this day.  These Ranger Naturalists have an encyclopedic knowledge of the high sierra’s flora, fauna, history and geology.  On the trail and during the evening campfire programs, your guide will provide a fun-filled Yosemite experience.


Learn how to apply for the High Sierra Camp Lottery.


The Trips
Take a 5-day hike to Sunrise, Merced Lake and Vogelsang High Sierra Camps or visit all 5 High Sierra Camps on our 7-day Hikes.

7-day Guided Hikes 2015
Visit all 5 High Sierra Camps: Glen Aulin, May Lake, Sunrise, Merced Lake (2 nights) and Vogelsang.
Trips depart Sundays: July 12, 19, 26 Aug 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 (8 trips) conditions permitting.

5-day Guided Hikes 2015 
Visit Sunrise, Merced Lake (2 nights) and Vogelsang.
Monday trips depart: July 13, 20, 27 Aug 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 (8 trips) conditions permitting.
Friday trips depart: July 10, 17, 24, 31 Aug 7, 14, 21, 28 (8 trips) conditions permitting.

Ranger-led Guided Hiking Trip pricing includes: lodging, meals, and guide.

For all Ranger Guided Hikes, you can meet your ranger at the Tuolumne Meadows Lodge the evening before your trip begins. Check at the Tuolumne Meadows Lodge front desk for the meeting time and place the day before your trip starts.

It is very common to experience the effects of high altitude such as headaches, dehydration and sometimes nausea.  To avoid this experience, your Ranger Guides recommend staying in the high country for two nights before the trip begins.  Many people stay at either White Wolf Lodge or Tuolumne Meadows Lodge the night before to get used to the altitude and to be nearby for the 8:15 - 8:30 am start the following morning.

The Hiking
Each group is a little different, but generally, people hike at their own pace and re-group at trail junctions and particularly notable or scenic locations for a snack, rest and a chance to learn something from your Ranger Naturalist.

Hiking mileage ranges from 7.5 - 10 miles a day.  Trail descriptions are available regarding the wide variety of terrain on the High Sierra Camp Loop.

The Lodging
At the Yosemite High Sierra Camps, a wide array of amenities welcome you after a day of hiking. Guided hiking groups typically arrive mid-afternoon. Drop your day pack in a canvas tent cabin*, and relax or explore while High Camp staff cook a hearty, delicious dinner for you.

Merced Lake, May Lake and Sunrise Camps have the luxury of shower facilities, and evenings are filled with ranger-led campfire conversations, interesting stories and information about the beautiful scenery that surrounds you.
Start the next morning with an ample breakfast at the camp, and pick up your sack lunch before continuing your tour of the high places of Yosemite.

A suggested packing list and other High Sierra Camp information to help you prepare for your trip is available online.

* Please plan to share a tent with others. We try to fill all beds in order to maximize the number of people able to enjoy the High Sierra Camps.