One of the most iconic destination outside of Yosemite Valley is Cathedral Lakes. Budd Lake has been cleared of fish to provide habitat for the endangered yellow-legged frog. Yosemite National Park's website offers great information about birding in the park. Once you get to Upper Cathedral Lake, circle around to the right of the lake and crest the small ridge behind the lake for stunning views of Lower Cathedral Lake and the surrounding countryside. With so many heavy feet tramping along the John Muir Trail, rattlesnakes are rare. The trail is like a staircase: the first 0.8 mi ascends 600 ft, the next 0.7 mi is level, the next 0.6 mi ascends 600 ft, the last 0.7 mi before the junction descends 100 ft. And a little mountain sickness. Expect to find others at these popular lakes. Hiking Distance: lower lake 3.5 miles, upper lake 3.7 miles Cathedral Lakes - beautiful alpine lakes only a short hike from Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite. Yosemite is known for being home to granite peaks, meadows, rich flora, waterfalls, and several lakes. Helpful Tent and Road Trips Destinations Romania Travel Photo – Medieval In slightly deeper water they dive to the bottom. Half-Day Run: Run in from Tioga Road on the Lower/Upper Cathedral Lakes … Distance: 8 miles roundtrip Very soon along the trail, it has a junction with a trail paralleling the road and more extensive information signs. This map is for illustrative purposes only. The scenic beauty of Cathedral Lakes draws both day hikers and backpackers to their shores. Trail. Easy access, beautiful scenery and tempting peaks make this a popular spot for backpackers, day hikers and climbers. Lower Cathedral Lake is typically less populated than nearby Upper Lake and has some of the mot beautiful scenery on the JMT. Every effort is made to provide accurate and up to date information, but we cannot be responsible for errors or for changes that may have occurred since publication. Check with rangers about the suitability of conditions before setting out on any hike or other forest activity. Here's a list of the 10 most gorgeous lakes in Yosemite, USA. This page was in the Lower Cathedral Spire notebook that Richard Leonard donated to the Yosemite Climbing Association in 1993. The Lower Cathedral Lake is the most visited lake out of the two. Day Hiking Upper Cathedral Lake, Yosemite Trailhead: Tioga Rd / Hwy 120, on the West side of Tuolumne Meadows by the Cathedral Lakes sign. Only 3½ miles from Tuolumne Meadows, the lakes are a wonderful weekend destination and also a favorite stopping place for John Muir Trail Hikers coming up from Yosemite Valley. Turn right (southwest) and follow the trail for about .5 miles through areas of wildflowers until you reach the bench of the bedrock of the lake. Cathedral Pass Halfway the trail I passed the metal sign with cut out letters indicating the side trail to the lower Cathedral Lakes, north of the trail. The lakes are situated 1.6 km (1 mi) southwest of Cathedral Peak and 3.2 km (2 mi) east-northeast of Tenaya Lake. This map is for illustrative purposes only. Spam? Cathedral Lakes Photo by J. Knox Why you should go: A short out-and-back hike up to a pair of stunning glacial lakes, nestled under the towering shadow of Cathedral Peak. I decided to ignore this side trail for now. And a little mountain sickness. Cathedral lake is one of my favorite day hike destinations with granite slabs sloping into the lake and fantastic views up to Cathedral Spire and down to Tenya lake. Distance: 9 miles Elevation Gain: 1,738 feet (total) . It is among Yosemite’s most attractive lakes, and is right in the midst of some of the most picturesque scenery around. The terrain in this region is great for off-trail hiking and exploration. Horses are also able to use this trail. The lower lake is located at elevation 9,288 feet (2,831 m), while the upper lake is located at elevation 9,585 feet (2,922 m). Simply walking behind the lake (with Cathedral Peak at your back) and cresting the ridge will offer up this amazing view. Helpful Tent and Road Trips Destinations Romania Travel Photo – Medieval The information provided on this website is done so without warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied, including but not limited to, the implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. Hike: Lower Cathedral Lake, Yosemite Published May 30, 2013 May 29, 2013 by Linda Bernardi in Yosemite 20 Comments It’s official… my son has truly become a hiker! Bonus: head to the west side of the lake for views of Tenaya Lake and the valley below. Parking here is pullout/parallel and usually a mess so you should see the line of cars as you approach. An Adventure Projects staff member will review this and take an appropriate action, but we generally don't reply. The Cathedral range is the prototypical High Sierra granite range with spectacular views. Best seasons: summer through fall. It’s an 8-mile round-trip to both the upper and lower lake. There is roughly around a 1,000 ft. of elevation gain if you were to go all the way to Upper Cathedral Lake. Cathedral Lakes A longer hike to a couple of lakes out of the Tuolumne area is the trail to Cathedral Lakes. Cathedral Pass Halfway the trail I passed the metal sign with cut out letters indicating the side trail to the lower Cathedral Lakes, north of the trail. Here is the map. Something else? Easy and fun for almost any type level of fitness . Always confirm information with the service provider and check for any recent changes that may have been made. One of the most popular day hikes in the Tuolumne Meadows area, Cathedral Lakes explores some of the grandest glacially-carved terrain in the Yosemite high country. Great shot of the Lower Cathedral Meadows. Family Friendly: The hike into this lake will give older kids an intro to an excursion to the wilderness without being too difficult. Deer are seen occasionally in the area. Cathedral Lakes trail map, Yosemite National Park. Complete information - trail descriptions, photos, maps, and amenities. Cathedral Lakes, John Muir Trail, Yosemite National Park, California Of the many lakes reached by short hikes along the Tioga Road in Yosemite National Park, Upper and Lower Cathedral Lake are generally thought to be the most beautiful, each surrounded by meadows and granite cliffs, without too many trees to block the views of nearby mountains. The terrain in this region is great for off-trail hiking and exploration. Take your camera, but leave your fishing pole behind. The Lower Cathedral Lake is the most visited lake out of the two. Sunrise and sunset with the reflection of Cathedral Peak on the glassy water is the best way to end and begin your day on the trail. 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