Backpack to Young Lakes

Yosemite Glen Aulin Trailhead

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Take an incredibly scenic hike to Young Lakes in the backcountry of Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite. Some of the best campsites in Yosemite can be found here.

The Young Lakes trail starts from the Lembert Dome parking area and then winds up around 6 miles into the high country past alpine meadows and stunning views of the surrounding mountains. Lower and Middle Young Lakes are beautiful, but you're going to want to push on to Upper Young Lake, where you'll find the best views of the lot. One of my favorite campsites can be found here, but you'll have to explore around to find it :) In the summer, a jump in an alpine lake is just what you need after a long day of hiking.

Enjoy the fantastic sunset, stars, and sunrise over Ragged Peak, Mount Conness, and the rest of Tuolumne!

Pack List

  • Tent
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Water
  • Bear can
  • Food
  • Warm clothes
  • 10 essentials
  • Water filter
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Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Activities:

Fishing, Photography, Backpacking, Hiking

Skill Level:

Beginner

Season:

Spring, Summer, Autumn

Trail Type:

Out-and-Back

Distance:

12 Miles

Elev. Gain:

1700 Feet

Rating:

Features:

Forest
Lake
River
Scenic

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How to Get There

11 months ago

Long Day Hike

I recently did this hike as a day hike. Instead of out and back, I opted for the loop. The loop starts at Lembert Dome, and continues to Young lakes. The (3rd lake) was my favorite, and yes, it was steep getting to! After a long lunch, we headed back down and stayed straight toward the PCT/Soda springs. Nice to have a change of scenery on the way back, but it adds on 3 extra miles making the total trip approximately 15 miles.

11 months ago

Added by Kyle Frost

Designer and Adventure Photographer based in Boulder, Colorado. Fan of mountains, coffee, beer, and witty banter. Available for commissions and collaborations. I'm @kylefrost pretty much everywhere.

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