Back to index Yosemite High Sierra Camp Loop Hike - Day 6

An edited version of my adventure on the High Sierra Camps Loop appeared in the second issue of  Sidewalk - A hiking and backpacking magazine
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Day 1
Trip Date:  08/26/2014

: 7.6 Miles

Vertical Gain: -1500'

Group Size: 6
Hike Rating:  Easy   Moderate    Hard   Strenuous
Yosemite High Sierra Camp Loop Hike Day 6
Download GPX GPX for this trip
HSC Day 6 Elevation Profile
Start Coordinates:   N 37 52.699, W 119 20.315 (parking for first day's hike)     End Coordinates:   Same as Start Coordinates  
Car Shuttle Req'd:   No Parking Directions:   Take Highway 395 south from Monitor Pass toward Mono Lake.  At Lee Vining, turn on Highway 120 (Tioga Pass) and enter Yosemite Park on the east side.  About 10 miles into the park turn at the Wilderness Permit area (Tuolumne Meadows Lodge Road) and continue to the parking coordinates for backpacker vehicles.
Hazards of Note:   Wildlife, especially bears.  Some of the trails are difficult and footing can be tenuous at times.  Much of the uphill and downhill sections are made up of granite steps which are rough on the feet after time. Crowd Factor:   Mixed.  Yosemite is a very popular destination during the summer months, and this hike and option to stay in the HSC locations with served meals is available only by lottery system.  The further into the park the trails will be less crowded, but there are many places for day hikers to pick up the trail system.
General Notes:
Day six is the easiest of the six backpacking days, with nearly all of the 7.6 miles gradually heading downhill as you end up 1500' feet below the Vogelsang HSC by the time you reach the end of the trail at Tuolumne Meadows.   Much of the hike is in open meadow, part of it is forested by the entire length follows a mountain valley down to the last mile and a half, where the trail intersects the Pacific Crest Trail.  For about a mile the hike is along the PCT, then you take a junction over the Tuolumne River back to the parking area from where you started.  

Vogelsang Peak with some of the early morning sunrise hitting the top. Vogelsang Peak in the morning
All packed up and ready to head out on the last day.
All packed up
The sign at Vogelsang HSC indicating how much distance was left before we were finished. Start of the hike
This marmot was one of the many creatures we passed along the way down to Tuolumne Meadows. Marmot
This experienced falcon flew along ahead of us, apparently looking for food that we would stir up by hiking along the trail.
Clever hunter
Our group headed along the trail, enjoying the open vistas that we had for most of the day. Our group on the trail 
Looking back toward Vogelsang Peak, where we had spent the previous night. Vogelsang 
One of a couple of mule trains we passed on the way down, taking supplies to Vogelsang HSC.
First level spot 
Ron and Joan, our guides on the last day enjoying some lunch about 2/3 of the way back to the cars. Ron and Joan
Once we hit the PCT, we were within a couple of miles of the end of the adventure. PCT
The last Yosemite metal sign that we would pass before we got to the end. Last sign 
Brent at the first of a couple of bridges over the Tuolumne River. Bridge over Tuolumne
Lots of glacial evidence at this spot, including a distinctive (and deep) glacial pothole. Glacial Pothole
Myself at the Tuolumne River bridge, just a few hundred feet from the end of our 51 mile trip. At the end
Diane and Brent happy to have the trip finished. Diane and Brent
And finally, one last shot of the entire group. One last group shot 
GPS Track of the full hike. GPS Track of Hike