Northern Yosemite - Hiking with Pack Stock
Meeting Place: Guests meet in Breakfast in front of the Hay Street Café. We recommend that guests stay at the Walker River Lodge (760-932-7021) which is across the street. The Rock Creek staff will meet guests and collect duffel. After breakfast, we’ll park the cars on a street in Bridgeport and transport guests to Tuolumne Meadows to begin the hike.
Itinerary: The following itinerary is the suggested plan for the trip. However, there may be changes based on grazing, campsite condition and the prerogative of the Rock Creek crew. There are many wonderful options and we reserve the right to make changes. Often, we camp at Miller Lake area, Benson Lake and try and choose campsites with privacy and wilderness seclusion. Mileages are estimated from Topo and are approximate.
Day 1: Tuolumne Meadows to Cold Canyon
We hike north on the Pacific Crest Trail from the largest meadows in Yosemite. The trail follows the Lyell Fork of the tuolumne River. The cascades and waterfalls as we head to Glen Aulin make this one of the most scenic routes in the Sierra. The trail climbs up Cold Canyon and we make camp in the meadows below Elbow Hill. Approximately 7 miles hike. (On occasion, we stay in Glen Aulin if the water is not running )
Day 2: Cold Canyon to McCabe Creek
The morning hike goes through meadows and alternating forest before we switchback through the Hemlock Forest to reach camp on McCabe Creek.. The McCabe Lakes are above camp and those arriving early may want to spend the afternoon exploring the beautiful canyon. (Less than 7 miles)
Day 3: McCabe Creek to Matterhorn Canyon
We descend to Return Creek in Virginia Canyon and then climb steeply to travel through the beautiful plateau with several ponds and Miller Lake. Matterhorn is a spectacular glaciated canyons. Vast meadows and lots of flowers make this a favorite of visitors.
Day 4: Matterhorn Canyon to Smedberg Lake or Rodgers Lake
This remote part of Yosemite has beautiful vistas of glacial polished mountains, lush meadows and wildflowers. We climb to the top of Benson Pass and meander down to Smedberg Lake. Volunteer Peak frames the panoramic view to the west. Rodgers and Neal Lake are only a short hike from the lake. The group will camp to be able to enjoy great fishing or exploring the ponds and lakes of the area.
Day 5: Layover in Smedberg Lake Area
Great fishing in Rodgers and Neal Lakes!
There are many ponds and lakes only a short distance from Smedberg and there are many off trail options to explore.
Day 6: Smedberg Lake to Lower Kerrick Meadow
We descend to Benson Lake and climb up through the manzanita to Seavy Pass. This is an enchanting area of ponds, streams and hemlocks.. At Kerrick Creek the trail heads east to a camp in Kerrick Canyon. Small granite domes rise out of the canyon and it seems like a miniature Yosemite Valley. Approximately 8 mile hike
Day 7: Lower Kerrick Canyon to camp near Pealer Lake
The trail winds up through a series of meadows to a camp near the crest of the Sierra. Once at camp spend the afternoon at Peeler Lake or exploring the Buckeye Pass area.
About 5 miles hiking.,.
Day 8: Upper Kerrick Canyon to Twin Lakes
We exit Yosemite National Park and wind our way down to Twin Lakes. Estimated 8 miles hiking. The shuttle will bring us back to our cars in Bridgeport. Expect to be back in town by 4 PM.
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Rock Creek Pack Station provides all of its trips as a permitee of the Inyo National Forest.
All Trail Rides and Packing Schools are subject to an 8% regulatory reservation fee, plus 2% USFS fee.
Horse Drives and Mustang Trips are are subject to an 8% regulatory reservation fee, plus 3% USFS fee.
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Last Updated: March 26, 2016
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