Hike North Glacier Pass to Lake Catherine

Rate this Adventure Yosemite North Glacier Pass

  • Activities:

    Camping, Photography, Backpacking, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Spring, Summer, Autumn

Lake
Scenic

Challenging talus/scree. Snow, even in the summer (and drought). Killer view. Making it up to Lake Catherine.

On the second day our trip to Thousand Island Lake, we hiked up North Glacier Pass to see Lake Catherine.

The Pass, located between Banner Peak and Mount Davis, is a short distance away from Thousand Island Lake with an alpine meadow at the base of the Pass which quickly turns into a rugged talus/scree with snow patches. Distance to the top of the Pass is not very far but there is about a 1,000/ft elevation gain in that short hike. (Thousand Island Lake is at about 9800ft, the top of North Glacier Pass is about 11,200ft, Lake Catherine is about 11,040ft.)

We had lunch at the top in a shallow rock shelter followed by a quick exploration of the area around Lake Catherine. Lots ice still on the surface of the lake despite being in the middle of summer.

The hike down is a breeze when you slide down big patches of snow.

Pack List

  • Hiking boots
  • Water
  • Lunch
  • Snacks
  • Jacket
  • Hat/sunblock
  • Gloves (optional because of the many rocks & boulders)
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