Yosemite for Beginners – First-Timers Guide

Yosemite National Park is almost otherworldly, with cascading waterfalls, towering groves of giant sequoias, and iconic granite formations like world-famous Half Dome and El Capitan. These famous landscapes and challenging adventures draw nature enthusiasts from all over the world. Whether you’re a seasoned backpacker and hiker or a first time visitor, Yosemite has something for you. 

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Planning Your Trip to Yosemite

Yosemite Valley Vista (Kim Carroll Photography)

Best Time to Visit Yosemite

For smaller crowds, the best time to visit Yosemite is during shoulder seasons: spring’s April and May, and fall’s September and October. Chasing waterfalls in Yosemite? Early spring is the best time to visit. The park’s legendary wildflower bloom sees its peak in late spring and early summer.

Getting to Yosemite

Yosemite National Park is easily accessible by car from all major California cities, including San Francisco. Some adventurers arriving without cars rely on bus services, while others fly into the nearby Fresno Yosemite International Airport and rent a car to get them the rest of the way to the park. Get directions to Rush Creek Lodge Yosemite.

Where to Stay in Yosemite

Explore Yosemite in style! Often called a “destination within a destination,” Rush Creek Lodge features the perfect blend of rustic sensibility and contemporary touches. Our 20-acre lodge offers 143 lodge rooms, suites, and hillside Yosemite villas with private decks for stunning views anytime and amenities designed to create an outstanding getaway for kids and adults alike. See all of Rush Creek’s lodge rooms and suites.

Yosemite Park Passes and Reservations

Yosemite National Park charges an entry fee. Additionally, you’ll need a Peak Hour day-use reservation to drive your own vehicle into the park during peak seasons. Always check the National Park Service’s website while you plan your trip and frequently before you visit for the most up-to-date information about passes and fees, road closures, and more. 

Yosemite Valley Must-Sees

Tunnel View (Kim Carroll Photography)

Start your Yosemite trip with the unparalleled vista views at Tunnel View and Glacier Point, both offering awe-inspiring panoramic views of Yosemite Valley. If you’re looking for easy hikes and adventures, check out our list of easy hikes near Rush Creek Lodge or choose one of these highlights: 

  • Nature Trail at Rush Creek Lodge: this .5 mile round trip hike is perfect for a leisurely family stroll and hikers looking to stretch their legs
  • Bridalveil Fall: another easy half mile hike in Yosemite, this hike leads to the base of Bridalveil Fall and treats those who venture close enough to a refreshing spray of alpine water
  • Cooks Meadow: this one mile hike in Yosemite is a simple, flat trail that rewards you with some of the best views of the Valley!

Yosemite offers more than hiking – visit the Yosemite Museum to learn about the park’s history, browse exhibits at the visitor centers, at trailheads and entrances throughout the park, or join a ranger-led program through the National Park Service to learn more about the beautiful landscape surrounding you in Yosemite. 

Beyond the Valley

Hetch Hetchy Hike (KimCarroll.com- RC MAR 2017-50)

Venture beyond Yosemite Valley and discover hidden gems like Hetch Hetchy Reservoir. This less-crowded area features waterfalls and steep granite cliffs. Feel the enormity of Giant Sequoias in a grove near the historic Big Oak Flat Road, and explore the wide expanses of Tuolumne Meadows, a picturesque high country setting home to sparkling lakes, scenic hiking trails, and serene wildflower meadows. 

Tips for First-Timers

Visiting Yosemite for the first time? Keep these tips handy. 

  1. Be Weather Wise: the temperature and weather conditions in the park can change quickly and unexpectedly. Wear layers so you can adapt, and always bring an extra pair of socks!
  2. Stay Hydrated: Carry plenty of water during any activity, and particularly during hikes. When at mountain elevations, plan to drink twice as much water as you would in your home environment.
  3. Slow Down: Yosemite holds endless wonders, and isn’t going anywhere – prioritize what you’re most excited about, and remember that Yosemite is here to welcome you back anytime!

Your first Yosemite adventure is just the beginning! With each return visit, you’ll uncover new treasures and deepen your appreciation for this extraordinary park. Let Rush Creek Lodge be your luxurious basecamp and gateway to all the wonders Yosemite offers. Select from these packages and offers to add to your Yosemite trip!

12 Things to Do in Yosemite in Winter

From stargazing and hot stone massages to snowshoe hikes and holiday celebrations, there is an array of things to do in Yosemite in winter – especially when visiting Rush Creek Lodge. Along with daily activities that change seasonally, the winter schedule at Rush Creek is packed full of mountain fun and snowy scenes. 

Stargazing in Yosemite National Park at Rush Creek Lodge.

Stargazing 

Far from light pollution, the dark skies surrounding Rush Creek Lodge are perfect for stargazing. After watching a beautiful Yosemite sunset, bundle up and embark on a stargazing tour with the lodge’s expert Star Guides, where you’ll see the cosmos through a digital telescope with clarity like never before. Star Guides will direct you around the night sky, pointing out constellations, star clusters, and other beautiful features of the Milky Way.

Wonders of Yosemite Hike & Tour

This full day hike is a great way to spend a winter day in Yosemite. The Wonders of Yosemite trip begins with a driving tour through Yosemite Valley, showcasing beautiful snowy views of the landscape as you approach the giant sequoia groves. The grove portion of the hike is done on snowshoes during the winter, winding 3 miles total through the giant sequoias that represent Yosemite’s natural history. 

Learn more about Rush Creek’s guided Yosemite tours.

Father & Daughter enjoying s'mores at Rush Creek Lodge.

S’mores at the Lodge

Join other Rush Creek Lodge guests nightly around the cozy fire pit for s’mores! Enjoy the warmth of a well-maintained campfire and indulge in the most classic outdoor snack, a delicious melty s’more. Meet your fellow guests, warm up by the fire, and head off to bed after your mountain dessert. 

Wood Ornaments

Rush Creek Lodge offers an impressive variety of activities for guests, including the chance to decorate your own wooden ornament. Paint your ornament and take it home to hang on your Christmas tree as a reminder of your awesome Yosemite adventure! 

Happy Snowshoeing the Merced Grove of Giant Sequoias in Yosemite National Park.

Giant Sequoia Snowshoe

The Giant Sequoia Snowshoe is a 3-mile hike, showcasing the beautiful giant sequoias. The largest living species on earth, seeing these gorgeous trees flanked by bright white snow is an experience you just can’t miss in Yosemite. This half-day excursion requires beginner to intermediate effort. 

Rim of the Valley Snowshoe Adventure

Venture out to one of the best overlooks in all of Yosemite with Rush Creek Lodge’s Rim of the Valley Snowshoe Adventure. You’ll snowshoe up and down forested ridges to reach Dewey Point, an idyllic outlook that provides breathtaking views of Yosemite Valley’s southern rim, El Capitan, Three Brothers, and other famous Yosemite landmarks. 

Snow swimming in the heated pool at Rush Creek Lodge Yosemite.

 

Heated Saltwater Pools

The pool at Rush Creek Lodge is heated and open year-round, weather permitting, as are both of the large hot tubs. Relax away tired muscles from your day of Yosemite adventuring, or turn your attention upward for sublime stargazing. 

Range of Light Yosemite Valley Tour

See Yosemite from an insider’s perspective on a driving tour of Yosemite Valley’s most famous wonders and hidden secrets. Perfect for the winter with short walks on flat, easy-to-navigate terrain, the Range of Light Yosemite Valley Tour features opportunities to take in the views from vista overlooks, bright snow and ice formations, and other classic Yosemite winter sights, supplemented by your guide with information about the Park and its natural history, wildlife, and more.  

Yosemite Valley snowfall.

Yosemite Valley Explorer Snowshoe

Don your snowshoes and follow one of Rush Creek’s expert guides through Yosemite’s hidden trails on the Yosemite Valley Explorer Snowshoe, one of the best things to do in Yosemite in winter. Your guide will take care of the driving so you can enjoy the views, and provide interesting facts about the area’s hidden wonders once you’re on foot and ready to explore 4.5 miles surrounding Yosemite’s most famous icons. 

Craft Classes at Rush Creek Lodge

Ready for some time away from the chill? Create a beautiful keepsake of your winter Yosemite trip in a gemstone bracelet class, stitch beaded earring class, or basket weaving class taught by traveling art educator and artisan Willow Polson. Class fees include all the materials you need to create your own masterpiece.

Family enjoying Christmas in Yosemite at Rush Creek Lodge. 

Christmas Activities at Rush Creek Lodge

December 22 – 28, 2023

If you’re joining us for the holiday season, we’re excited to provide you with traditional holiday celebrations in ways you’ve never experienced before. From live music and visits with Santa to our tree lighting and special Christmas menu, you’re in for an unforgettable Yosemite Christmas experience

New Year’s Eve Activities at Rush Creek Lodge

December 29, 2023 – January 2, 2024

Spend your New Year’s Eve at Rush Creek Lodge! Treat yourself to a delicious dinner by Executive Chef Lemens, a sparkling champagne toast, and late-night fun in the Tavern to ring in the new year right.  

Frequently Asked Questions about Yosemite in Winter

Deciding whether to take on Yosemite in the winter brings up a host of questions. Let the experts at Rush Creek Lodge answer your most frequently asked questions about winter in Yosemite! 

Is Yosemite worth visiting in winter?

Of course! Yosemite is worth visiting anytime, including the winter. You can take a snowshoe hike to access less-traveled parts of the park and see breathtaking views of the snow-covered landscapes, experience festive mountain holiday celebrations, stargaze from your private balcony at Rush Creek Lodge, and more. 

What not to miss in Yosemite in winter?

Christmas Week at Rush Creek Lodge is a can’t miss Yosemite winter event. In addition to unforgettable views of Yosemite’s iconic landmarks blanketed in snow, winter in Yosemite brings magical mountain experiences like campfire s’mores, stargazing, snowshoeing, and chef-curated dining. 

What to do in Yosemite when it snows?

There are plenty of fun things to do in Yosemite when it snows. Embark on a snowshoe hike guided by one of our expert naturalist guides and see the Park’s most famous landmarks in their wintery beauty, gather around the fireplace with a classic board game in your Yosemite villa, or even visit our Yosemite spa for a dip in the Warm Waterfall Coves to contrast with the cold outdoors. 


At Rush Creek Lodge, you’re just minutes from the best things to do in Yosemite in the winter. From expert-led snowshoe hikes to relaxing soaks in our heated granite waterfall mineral hot tubs, an amazing Yosemite winter experience is at your fingertips when you choose Rush Creek Lodge. 

Trending This Fall at Rush Creek Lodge & Spa

Fall holds a special place in our hearts at Rush Creek Lodge and Yosemite, as the sweeping foliage brings warm days, cool nights, and a bounty of Yosemite adventure.

We’ve gathered the top 10 trending attractions and activities this fall that guests are enjoying right now.

In Yosemite

 

1. vALLEY LOOP TRAILFall Color and Half Dome on the Merced River (Desiree S.)

This is the ultimate choose-your-own-adventure, with loops as short as 1-mile and as long as 11.5-miles. Every bend in the trail offers unique perspectives of Yosemite Valley’s most iconic granite features.

Throughout the year, the Yosemite Valley Loop Trail transforms with the changing seasons, making it a popular destination for sightseers and experienced hikers.

Whether blanketed with falling leaves in autumn or adorned with a glistening dusting of snow in the winter, this trail offers an ever-evolving and enchanting glimpse into the natural beauty of Yosemite Valley!

 

2. Wapama fallsGroup Photo at Wapama Falls (Kim Carroll)

Hetch Hetchy, 35-minute drive

Yosemite National Park is no doubt recognized for its jaw dropping waterfalls. Though every year when fall rolls around, the flow of Yosemite’s most iconic waterfalls begins to dwindle.

This is not the case in Hetch Hetchy! Wapama Falls is Yosemite National Park’s biggest waterfall by volume, making it a must-see for those chasing waterfalls this fall.

For the sightseer, Wapama Falls can be viewed while standing on the O’Shaughnessy Dam.

For hikers, it’s a 5-mile round trip hike to the base of this waterfall.

 

3. Tuolumne GroveTuolumne Grove of Giant Sequoias (Megan G.)

30-minute drive

We will never stop recommending this grove of giants, where every season brings new beauty. Catch the changing dogwoods against the brilliant red bark of the Sequoias in this dense Evergreen forest.

Visit a Tunnel Tree and the largest Sequoia, Big Red, on the 3-mile round trip trail through the grove.

Fun Fact: The path down to the Grove is paved because it is the old Big Oak Flat Road! Completed in 1875, this road welcomed tourists traveling by stagecoach and eventually some of the first automobiles until it closed in 1940.

 

4. Glacier point road Glacier Point Sunset (Corey M.)

This scenic road winds its way to one of the most spectacular viewpoints in the park: Glacier Point. Along the way, travelers are treated to vistas of Half Dome, Vernal and Nevada Falls and pass multiple trailheads. Glacier Point Road is typically open from late spring to early fall, so get your trip in before the season’s first snow blankets the road!

For sightseers, Glacier Point offers a jaw-dropping vista overlooking Yosemite Valley. You’ll receive unforgettable views of Half Dome with Yosemite’s high country painted in the background.

For hikers, there are many trails that begin along this road. The two most notable being Sentinel Dome and Taft Point. Both trails have the same starting point and do not exceed a 2.2-mile roundtrip.

Looking for a longer trek? Connect the two trails to form a 5.8-mile loop.

 

5. Mirror  lakeMirror Lake (Jonah C.)

In the fall, Mirror Lake in Yosemite National Park undergoes a breathtaking transformation.

This pristine body of water, nestled at the base of Half Dome, becomes a magical reflection of the season’s colors!

 

6. Tioga roadTuolumne Meadows (Megan G.)

This road flaunts an extensive list of renowned Yosemite hikes and destinations. Whether you’re looking for a day of sightseeing with back-to-back big vistas, or to explore Yosemite’s backcountry, Tioga Road will amaze and inspire you. So go on a journey through diverse ecosystems, from lush forests to seas of granite, and from alpine lakes to sweeping meadows.

Tioga Road reaches an elevation of 9,945 feet and is the first road to see snow, so be sure to get it in while you can!

7. Fly FishingFly Fishing

$40/day to rent fly fishing equipment from the Recreation Desk

Grab a trail lunch from the General Store and rent Fly Fishing equipment from the Recreation Desk and escape to one of our local rivers. Rental includes all necessary equipment to secure a big catch!

A California Fishing License is required to fish our local rivers, and is not included with the rental.

Our favorite fishing spots:

  • Middle Fork Day Use Area, located on Evergreen Road
  • Carlon Day Use Area, located on Evergreen Road
    This one can be a hike and fish, with the trailhead to Carlon Falls located in the Day Use Area!
Back at the lodge…

 

8. Basket Weaving & JEWELRY makingJewelry Making (Willow B.)

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday & Thursday | 7pm

Using a basketry kit from Traditional Craft Kits, this class guides students through how to make a traditional California Native-style one-rod coiled basket.

Alternatively make a beautiful bracelet or earring keepsake of your Yosemite adventure using a variety of real gemstone, glass, wood, and other natural material beads.

Book now

9. stargazingRush Creek Stargazing (Kim Carroll 9-17_303 4800)

Experience the night sky like never before! Up close to nature’s light show, you’ll be gazing through our 12″ aperture Dobsonian telescope with goto tracking technology.

Learn about constellations, observe planets, nebulas, galaxies and other celestial wonders. Book now on our website!

 

10. Twilight spa day useRush Creek Spa Aromatherapy Steam Room (Kim Carroll)

Nov-Apr 6-9pm | Ages 16 and up, $45 per person

After a day’s adventure, find warmth and relaxation in our indoor/outdoor spa filled with innovative elements inspired by the natural beauty and power of Yosemite. Amenities at Rush Creek Spa integrate our signature combination of stone, sound, scent and warmth.

Get into your robes and settle in for an evening of crisp mountain air under starry skies.

S’more Yosemite Fun Photo Contest 2023

Our Summer 2023 Photo Contest, S’more Yosemite Fun, lets us experience the best of Yosemite through the eyes and hearts of your fellow travelers.

Thank you to everyone who submitted and for the unforgettable memories behind each photo that help keep us all #YosemiteDreaming

THE WINNERS WITH THE MOST VOTES:

1st Place: Carrie C.Carrie C. - Summer Photo Contest 2023

697 points
Family Spa Day
Prize: 2-night stay

CC: “Our family of six loved having the entire spa to ourselves one morning during family hours. It was our 2, 5, 6, and 9 year old’s first time at a spa. We enjoyed all of the amenities, especially the Aromatherapy Steam Room and Warm Waterfall Coves. Of course, taking four small children to the spa isn’t really relaxing for the parents, but we had fun sharing this unique resort experience with them!”

Runner Up: Natalie T.Natalie T. - Summer Photo Contest 2023

530 points
Nighttime View
Prize: 1-night stay

RM: “Staying at Rush Creek Lodge in Yosemite proved to be an extraordinary experience for my family. It provided a perfect setting to create cherished memories and forge new friendships. The highlight of the trip was undoubtedly the enchanting S’mores night, where laughter and joy filled the air as kids relished the sweet treats. The mini ziplines were an absolute hit, captivating the children’s hearts. Each day unfolded as a new adventure, with the resort offering an abundance of activities. From breathtaking hikes to tranquil moments in nature, Rush Creek Lodge truly had it all. It was an amazing haven for any family seeking a truly amazing getaway.”

Runner Up: Monica F.Monica F. - Summer Photo Contest 2023

505 points
Hetch Hetchy
Prize: 1-night stay

MF: “Hetch Hetchy on a cold and rainy Labor Day weekend!”

SOME HONORABLE MENTIONS WE LOVED:

Swingin’ Siblings by Josh G.Josh G. - Summer Photo Contest 2023

JG: “My kids (11 and 13) absolutely LOVED being able to explore the Lodge on their own – jumping from zipline to swing to shuffleboard – without their parents watching them like hawks. And the setting was truly gorgeous.”

 

Basket Weaving by Gayatri B.Gayatri B. - Summer Photo Contest 2023

KL: “Perfect location, classic mountain architecture, but updated and modern amenities. Kids LOVED the outdoor and indoor play areas – helped offset the tough hikes in Yosemite 🙂 We were surprised by how good the food was – since there are few other food options in the area, this was important! Kids also loved the Alexa speaker in the room :)”

 

 

Relaxing Poolside by Chris B.Chris B. - Summer Photo Contest 2023

CB: “Absolute perfection for kids AND adults. We had a blast.”

 

 

 

Sunset Happy Hour by Julie V.Julie V. - Summer Photo Contest 2023

JV: “Fabulous sunset tour – and the wine and cheese tray were 👍”

 

 

Fourth of July by Katelyn S.Katelyn S. - Summer Photo Contest 2023

ST: “4th of July bonanza at the pool!”

 

 

Fall Photo Contest: Yosemite Fall Colors

RCL: Thanks for all the love everyone!

Our new contest is underway – “Yosemite Fall Colors” is open to all who are dreaming of their next Yosemite visit.  If you have a favorite Yosemite image and a memory you’d like to share, feel free to join in the fun.

Yosemite Fall Colors

You just might win a free stay at Rush Creek Lodge!

Book Your Next Yosemite Adventure

When you’re ready to plan your next trip, remember to check our Packages & Special Offers section for great seasonal deals and convenient bundles for a variety of occasions.   Also remember that when you book with us directly on this website, by calling us at (209) 379-2373, or emailing us at info@rushcreeklodge.com, you’re guaranteed to get the best rates and service.

Book Now

Can’t get enough of these amazing guest photos and stories?

Visit the Gallery and keep #YosemiteDreaming until we meet again.

Happy trails from your friends at Rush Creek!

10 Best Moderate Hikes in Yosemite

If you’re ready for a challenge, Yosemite National Park is the place to find one. From less-traveled Hetch Hetchy to the famous Taft Point and Sentinel Dome Loop, the best moderate hikes in Yosemite are at your fingertips thanks to Rush Creek Lodge’s expert guided Yosemite hiking tours.

Read on to see our 10 favorite moderate hikes in Yosemite! 

Wapama Falls in Yosemite National Park.

Hetch Hetchy Wapama Falls Naturalist Hike | 2.2 Miles Each Way

This moderate hike covers 5 miles of Hetch Hetchy, 2.2 miles each way. Hetch Hetchy is typically less crowded than Yosemite Valley, and boasts similar beautiful views complete with mountain domes and waterfalls. Once you reach Wapama Falls, you’ll have the opportunity to relax by the water or continue past the falls for a little more adventure before hiking back to the lodge. 

The Hetch Hetchy Wapama Falls Naturalist Hike departs from Rush Creek Lodge’s sister property, Evergreen Lodge. Participants should arrive at the Evergreen Lodge Recreation Center 15-20 minutes before departure. 

Giant Sequoia Hike or Snowshoe | 3 Miles Round Trip

This half-day Giant Sequoia Hike or Snowshoe is one of the best moderate hikes in Yosemite. The giant sequoias in Merced Grove are incredible any time of year, but the year round accessibility of this hike means you can snowshoe through the rarely-traveled landscape seen by few visitors when snow blankets the grove in winter. Snowshoe rental is included in this hike’s fee. 

The sequoia grove portion of this tour requires a 3 mile round trip hike or snowshoe. Participants should be comfortable walking or snowshoeing up to 3 miles in varied terrain, at elevations up to 6,000 feet. 

Wonders of Yosemite Hike and Tour | 3 Miles Round Trip

The Wonders of Yosemite Hike and Tour is a full day, moderate hike in Yosemite. The trip begins with a driving tour of Yosemite Valley, where expert guides from Rush Creek Lodge will do the driving so you can enjoy the beautiful scenery. You’ll see rushing waterfalls, majestic giant sequoia trees, and stunning vista views on your way to the giant sequoia groves. 

This moderate hike in Yosemite will take you on a 3 mile round trip hike through the giant sequoias that were an integral part of Yosemite’s beginnings as a National Park. During the winter and early spring, this moderate Yosemite hike turns into a snowshoe adventure – snowshoe rental is available through Rush Creek Lodge.  

Yosemite Valley View (Santino T.).

Yosemite Valley Explorer | 4-5 Miles

Get to know Yosemite Valley on the Yosemite Valley Explorer hike, one of the best moderate hikes in Yosemite. Rush Creek Lodge’s expert guide will show you Yosemite Valley’s hidden trails as you traverse 4-5 miles around many of the area’s iconic wonders. 

Rush Creek’s friendly naturalist guides will take care of the driving while you see the Valley’s icons and hidden secrets. When it’s time to go on foot, participants should be comfortable walking up to 5 miles on varied terrain at elevations up to 6,000 feet. This moderate hike in Yosemite may be a snowshoeing trip in late fall and winter. 

May Lake + Mount Hoffman Naturalist Hike | 5.5 Miles

May Lake + Mount Hoffman Naturalist Hike with Rush Creek Lodge will take you to the geographic center of Yosemite National Park. At May Lake, you’ll see the picturesque Mount Hoffman in double as the lake reflects it. 

The journey farther into the park leads to Mount Hoffman, a lesser-traveled area of the park that will show 360-degree views of Yosemite National Park. This moderate Yosemite hike is available through Rush Creek Lodge during the summer and fall. 

View from Sentinel Dome in Yosemite National Park.

Taft Point and Sentinel Dome Loop | 5.8 Miles

This moderate Yosemite hike covers the area between two iconic lookouts, Taft Point and Sentinel Dome. At the top of Sentinel Dome, you’ll be treated to a 360-degree view of the park featuring Half Dome and majestic Yosemite Falls. Taft Point’s draw is the picturesque views of the valley’s plunging cliffs, providing some of the most spectacular sights in Yosemite. 

Participants should be ready to gain about 1,200 feet of elevation on this 5.8 mile hike. Beginning at around 7,300 feet, hikers will carefully reach up to 8,114 feet before the loop turns for descent. 

Mono Pass Naturalist Hike | 7.4 Miles Round Trip

The Mono Pass Naturalist Hike is a moderate hike in Yosemite National Park, leading you to the top of Mono Pass for unbeatable views of the park’s eastern side and boundary. Sierra Nevada is one of the nation’s most rugged and least-accessed mountain ranges, and this hike places you on the crest for an unforgettable experience. 

This full-day hiking trip features sights like Mount Gibbs, Kuna Peak, and Mount Dana. Participants should be comfortable hiking up to 7.4 miles on varied terrain at elevations between 9,700 and 10,600 feet. 

North Dome at Yosemite National Park.

North Dome Naturalist Hike | 9 Miles Round Trip

Embark on a full-day trip to the North Rim of Yosemite Valley with the North Dome Naturalist Hike. One of the best moderate hikes in Yosemite for Half Dome views, this hike takes you to an impressive vantage point to look out over Half Dome and the surrounding canyons and peaks. 

Starting from the Tioga Road trailhead, you’ll follow your naturalist guide through old growth forests, keeping an eye out for local wildlife, and be met at the end with views from North Dome that some call the most spectacular on earth. Participants should be ready for up to 5 hours of hiking. 

Glen Aulin Naturalist Hike | 10 Miles Round Trip

Journey to the heart of Yosemite High Country for this moderate hike, the Glen Aulin Naturalist Hike. This trail covers 10 miles (5 miles each way) of breathtaking Yosemite High Country. Tuolumne Fall is stunning, a high cascading waterfall surrounded by granite cliffs and meadows full of wildflowers. 

This is a 6-8 hour hike, but you’ll be rewarded with time to swim in the refreshing High Sierra waters if the weather allows. The views of the Tuolumne River and surrounding alpine forest from the top of the falls is unmatched. This hike is available through Rush Creek Lodge from June – October, conditions permitting. 

Rancheria Falls Naturalist Hike | 13 Miles Round Trip

This moderate 13-mile hike in Yosemite’s Hetch Hetchy, the Rancheria Falls Naturalist Hike, takes you deep into the less-traveled Hetch Hetchy Valley. Your naturalist guide will take care to point out local flora and fauna, flourishing in the quiet forest that surrounds Hetch Hetchy Valley. 

The Rancheria Falls Naturalist Hike operates from our sister property, Evergreen Lodge. Participants should arrive at the meeting place, the Evergreen Lodge Recreation Center, 15-20 minutes prior to departure. Please allow yourself 15-20 minutes to drive to Evergreen Lodge from Rush Creek Lodge. 

Learn more about these moderate Yosemite National Park hikes. Sometimes less steps equals more sights. See our list of easy hikes in Yosemite.


Yosemite National Park is the place for you if you’re ready for moderate level hiking trails. You’ll be rewarded for your work with unbeatable views of Yosemite that you just can’t get without some effort – a moderate hike in Yosemite means breathtaking views and unparalleled experiences. Ready to take on the trails? Book your stay with Rush Creek Lodge today!

12 Best Easy Hikes in Yosemite: Less Steps, More Sights

Yosemite National Park isn’t just for extreme climbs and hikes – there are plenty of easy hikes in Yosemite near Rush Creek Lodge for those seeking a more leisurely and relaxed adventure. These easy hikes offer the perfect opportunity to explore the landscape and enjoy nature on your visit to Yosemite National Park.

Glacier Point High Five (Shabanova T.)

Glacier Point Trail | .3 miles round trip

The Glacier Point Trail is one of the easiest hikes in Yosemite – it’s more of a short walk than a hike, but takes you to a can’t-miss view of Yosemite Valley. Glacier Point treats hikers to beautiful scenes of Half Dome and the High Sierras, and an interesting perspective of Curry Village below. 

Nature Trail at Rush Creek Lodge | .5 Mile (1 Mile Round Trip)

This leisurely trail is perfect for families and hikers just looking to stretch their legs. The trail takes hikers just off property for views of plants and trees that are unique to Yosemite. Learn more about Rush Creek Lodge’s hiking trails.

Rush Creek Vista Point Trail (Matthew F.)

Bridalveil Fall | .5 miles round trip

Bridalveil Fall is an easy hike in Yosemite Valley that leads to the base of Bridalveil Fall. This 620-foot waterfall provides breathtaking views and a cool, refreshing spray to those who venture close enough. The short trail to Bridalveil Fall is paved, making it one of the easiest hikes in Yosemite. 

 

 

Lower Yosemite Falls | 1 mile round trip

The trail to Lower Yosemite Falls is paved and almost completely flat, perfect for beginners, families with small children, and anyone who wants a more leisurely experience in Yosemite. Lower Yosemite Falls is best visited in the spring, as snowmelt contributes to the roaring waters of the waterfall, but the view is gorgeous year round. 

Lower Yosemite Falls Trail on a Winter Day (Matt G.)

Cooks Meadow | 1 mile round trip

A popular photo spot and one of the easiest hikes in Yosemite, Cooks Meadow is one mile of flat, simple trail that takes you to some of the best views of the Valley. The path is boardwalk in some sections and paved in others, and easily accessible across the street from the Lower Yosemite Falls trailhead. 

Mist Trail | 1.6 miles round trip

The Mist Trail is a popular trail for hikers, as it leads to Vernal Fall, Nevada Fall, and more points up the trail. The trail is aptly named, as the trail beside the fall is constantly alight with spray from the waterfall. The Mist Trail is mostly uphill, but the effort is worth the view and a refreshing spray of mountain water. 

Vernal Fall Rainbow (Cory H.)

 

Sentinel Dome | 1.8 miles round trip

Sentinel Dome is one of the easier hikes in Yosemite, with less than 2 miles of exposed granite path round trip. The climb to the top of Sentinel Dome gives you a front row seat to the best views in Yosemite, like the Valley, Half Dome, and the High Sierras. Enjoy 360-degree views of the most beautiful landscapes in Yosemite at Sentinel Dome. 

View from Sentinel Dome in Yosemite National Park.

Taft Point | 2.2 miles round trip

This unassuming trail is one of the easiest hikes in Yosemite, and comes to a heart-pounding cliff’s edge. Adrenaline enthusiasts love to take photos standing at the edge of Taft Point’s cliffside with Yosemite Valley thousands of feet below in the background! Follow the trail through a meadow to the Point, where you’ll see great views of Yosemite Valley, El Capitan, and Yosemite Falls. 

Sentinel Meadow | 2.25 miles round trip 

Combine your Cooks Meadow adventure with the Sentinel Meadow Trail for an easy 2.25-mile loop. This easy loop leads you across two bridges over the breathtaking Merced River and brings you back to Cooks Meadow. The Cooks Meadow and Sentinel Meadow Loop treats hikers to incomparable views of Yosemite Falls and Half Dome. 

Vernal Fall | 2.4 miles round trip

Continue uphill on the Mist Trail about .4 miles to visit the top of Vernal Fall. See a new angle of Vernal Falls, enjoy the cool mist from the waterfall, and marvel at the views of the surrounding Valley. 

Vernal Fall Happiness (Matthew B.)

Giant Sequoia Hike/Snowshoe | up to 3 miles round trip

The Giant Sequoia Hike or Snowshoe, offered winter through spring at Rush Creek Lodge, is an easy and unforgettable journey through a magnificent giant sequoia grove. In the winter, snowshoe through the rarely-seen landscape with an expert naturalist guide. Bright wildflowers and singing birds join the scene in spring as the snow melts. 

Giant Sequoia Snowshoe Selfie (Kim Carroll)

Big Trees Hike + Swim | up to 3 miles round trip

Experience Yosemite’s famous giant sequoias on this hike with Evergreen Lodge. This trail passes through a conifer forest, surrounding you with birdsong and sights to see. You’ll follow Old Big Oak Flat Road until you reach a grove of giant sequoias to explore and learn about at the instruction of your naturalist guide. This hike concludes with a drive a little further into Yosemite to cool off at a swimming hole before heading back to the lodge.  

Learn more about Rush Creek Lodge’s guided Yosemite National Park tours.

Yosemite National Park offers a variety of easy hikes that let visitors take in the breathtaking beauty of the park without embarking on difficult treks. From short walks and paved trails to gentle slopes and surprisingly easy snowshoe trips, you’ll be rewarded with unbeatable views and lasting memories.

Happy trails!

8 Best Yosemite Hikes in the Summer

Yosemite National Park offers countless hikes for visitors to enjoy throughout the year, but adventurers searching for the best Yosemite hikes in the summer need to look no further than right here at Rush Creek Lodge and the surrounding area.

Read on for a list of some of the best Yosemite hikes in the summer! 

Yosemite Valley View (Santino T.).

Best summer hikes in Yosemite National Park

Yosemite Falls Trail

Approximately 7.2 miles | Moderate 

Starting in Yosemite Valley, this trail will lead you to the majestic Yosemite Falls, one of the tallest waterfalls in North America. This hike offers challenging uphill sections that reward hikers with awe-inspiring views of the valley, Half Dome, and the surrounding peaks. 

Tuolumne Meadows + Cathedral Lakes

8 miles | Moderate

One of the best Yosemite hikes in the summer is Tuolumne Meadows and Cathedral Lakes, beginning in the high country of Yosemite. The picturesque trail leads hikers through Tuolumne Meadows to Cathedral Lakes, where you can take a dip beneath the tall granite peaks. The crystal clear waters and stunning vistas make this trail an ideal summer hike. 

Yosemite Valley Explorer 

4-5 miles | Gentle to Moderate

Yosemite Valley Explorer traverses both iconic and hidden sights of Yosemite Valley. This trail takes about half a day round-trip, and showcases seasonal creeks, meadows, and unforgettable views of the park. During the summer is when you’ll see the landscape covered in its brightest green under gorgeous blue skies. 

Yosemite Overnight Backpacking Adventure

6-30 miles | Intermediate to Advanced

This overnight backpacking trip is fully customizable, making it one of the best Yosemite hikes in summer. Your Rush Creek Lodge guide will craft a unique, memorable adventure tailored to your goals. Whether you’re looking for a slow-paced overnight camping trip with the family or a 30-mile trek through the backwoods of the park, this overnight adventure in Yosemite is one of the best summer hikes. 

South Rim of Yosemite Valley Tour

10.5 miles | Moderate

This hike takes you away from summer crowds to the southern rim of Yosemite Valley. See the Red Fir groves, wildflower meadows, and historic sites that populate this less-traveled area of the park. Stop at multiple vista points along the way for stunning views of Mt. Hoffman and Mt. Conness. 

Learn more about Rush Creek Lodge’s guided Yosemite National park tours to add to your summer getaway itinerary.

Rush Creek Vista Trail (Amy C.).

New Hiking Trails at Rush Creek Lodge

Guests at Rush Creek Lodge can enjoy three onsite hiking trails, bringing the best Yosemite hikes in the summer right to their doorsteps. 

Nature Trail at Rush Creek Lodge

.5 mile | Gentle 

The Nature Trail is a leisurely and picturesque half-mile trail. Conveniently located on Rush Creek’s property, this is an ideal choice for families and individuals seeking a short, relaxing stroll. Created to showcase the natural flora of the Yosemite area, the trail is also an opportunity to learn about the nature of Yosemite Valley.

Vista Trail at Rush Creek Lodge

1.6 miles | Moderate

The Vista Trail is a moderate 1.6 mile trail that offers stunning views of the Stanislaus forest and the Sierra Nevada mountain range. The trail features lookout points with benches that encourage you to stop and take in the natural beauty of your surroundings in their brightest shades of summer green. 

Adventure Trail at Rush Creek Lodge

2.7 miles | Moderate to Advanced

The Adventure Trail is a 2.7 mile trail that begins at Rush Creek Lodge. The trail is multi-use for hikers and mountain bikers – you can rent a bike on the property or bring your own! This trail was created with adventure in mind, promising an unforgettable journey through the Yosemite wilderness on foot or by bike. 


Some of the best Yosemite hikes in summer are located right here at Rush Creek Lodge. Whether you venture off the property to tour Yosemite Valley or stick around near our Yosemite lodging, no day of trail adventures is complete until you end your day with a starlit soak in our hot tub, a dip in our 2,400 square-foot saltwater pool, or an aromatherapy massage at the Rush Creek Spa. Rest well at Rush Creek Lodge knowing you’re just steps from the action when you wake up!

Yosemite Week Long Trips

If you’re lucky enough to take a week-long trip to Yosemite, Rush Creek Lodge & Spa is the perfect place to call home for the week. In addition to the one-of-a-kind amenities on the property, Rush Creek Lodge is located next to Yosemite National Park’s main entrance on Highway 120, nearby the park’s main attractions and everything else the area has to offer.

Get the most out of your week-long Yosemite trip with the sample itinerary below! 

Day 1: Get to Know Rush Creek Lodge

Rush Creek Lodge Aerial (Kim Carroll)

  • Arrive at Rush Creek Lodge and get settled into your room or villa
  • Depending on what time you arrive, grab breakfast, lunch, or dinner at Rush Creek Lodge – whether you’d prefer a light bite from the General Store or a sit-down meal in the Tavern, there’s always something nearby. 
  • Pick up any trail supplies you need at the General Store
  • Check out Rush Creek Lodge’s recreation calendar to see what’s going on while you’re here. 
  • Head to the firepit for s’mores after sundown! 

Day 2: Yosemite Valley

  • Start your day with a hearty breakfast at The Restaurant at Rush Creek Lodge.
  • Head to Yosemite Valley for a guided Yosemite National Park tour and spend the day exploring the Park’s iconic landmarks, like Yosemite Falls, El Capitan, and Half Dome.
  • Hike one of the valley’s trails, like Mirror Lake Loop or the Lower Yosemite Fall Trail. 
  • In the evening, stargaze back at Rush Creek Lodge.

Day 3: Hetch Hetchy Valley

Yosemite Hetch Hetchy Wapama Falls Bridge (Kim Carroll 3-17.70)

  • Visit one of Yosemite’s hidden gems: Hetch Hetchy Valley.
  • Hetch Hetchy is home to some of Yosemite’s most stunning permanent and seasonal waterfalls, such as Wapama Falls and Tueeulala Falls.
  • Walk across the 400-foot-tall O’Shaugnessy Dam. Built in the early 20th century, the dam is one of the most impressive feats of engineering for its time.
  • Head back to Rush Creek Lodge and join in on a fun activity like Trivia, BINGO!, a Nature Talk, or the Lodge’s new California Craft Beer Tasting. 

Day 4: High Country

  • Visit the General Store at Rush Creek Lodge for provisions to pack a picnic lunch.
  • Take a scenic drive along Tioga Road for beautiful views of the park’s high country. 
  • Stop at Olmstead Point, Tenaya Lake, and Tuolumne Meadows for photo opportunities and to stretch your legs.
  • If you’re up for a challenge, devote the rest of the day to a hike on one of the high country trails, like Clouds Rest or Cathedral Lakes.
  • Enjoy your picnic lunch at any of the stops above – there’s nothing like a meal with a view. 

Day 5: Yosemite Flight Tours

Rush Creek Pool Area at Sunset (Kim Carroll)

  • Get a bird’s eye view of Yosemite National Park during a Yosemite Flight Tour (the only flight tours allowed to fly over Yosemite’s iconic landmarks).
  • Soar above volcanic ridges and peaks, stunning canyons, untouched wilderness on the Sierra Nevada Flight.
  • Enjoy aerial views of Yosemite Valley, Hetch Hetchy, and the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne when you choose the Yosemite Aerial Flight.
  • Head back to Rush Creek Lodge to soak in the pool or soak up the sun at one of the Lodge’s many outdoor recreation areas

Day 6: Big Trees and Camp Mather 

  • Start the day with breakfast and lattes from the General Store before meeting your group to head out on the Big Trees Hike + Swim, where you’ll hike through the forest to reach a majestic grove of sequoias and dive into one of Rush Creek Lodge’s favorite swimming holes to cool off. 
  • Rest up at Rush Creek Lodge for the afternoon – you have plans at sunset! Visit the Aromatherapy Steam Room for a lemongrass-infused rejuvenating session or try some playful relaxation in the Warm Waterfall Coves that wash your cares away.
  • Join Rush Creek Lodge’s partners, Camp Mather, for a sunset horseback ride along some of the area’s most beautiful trails to a gorgeous viewing spot to watch the sunset.

Day 7: See You Soon, Yosemite

Outdoor lounge at the Rush Creek Spa near Yosemite National Park.

  • Indulge in a relaxed day at Rush Creek Lodge. Wander the property’s nature trails, take in the scenery from your room or cabin, and get ready to head home. 
  • Pamper yourself with a treatment at Rush Creek Spa, like the 4-layer Rush Creek Signature facial that features layers of pure, fresh European seaweed to rejuvenate and tone the skin, a mineral-rich thermal mask, and massage. 
  • Feast on your favorite menu items, like the popular crispy-fried cauliflower,  BBQ chicken flatbread, roasted beet salad, king salmon, and Philly cheesteak, one last time at the Restaurant or Tavern.
  • Gather around the firepit one more time for a round of s’mores after sunset. 

As you plan your week-long trip to Yosemite, we recommend checking out the latest Yosemite travel updates. Updates include road closures, wildfire status, and much more to help you plan your stay.

This is just one way to spend a week-long trip to Yosemite. The possibilities are endless in an area like Yosemite, which has so many sights to see and experiences to offer. No matter how you choose to spend your days, Rush Creek Lodge is just the place to call home for your week-long stay in Yosemite. 

Wonderful Waterfalls and Wildflowers Photo Contest 2023

Our Spring 2023 Photo Contest, Wonderful Waterfalls and Wildflowers, lets us experience the best of Yosemite through the eyes and hearts of your fellow travelers.

Thank you to everyone who submitted and for the unforgettable memories behind each photo that help keep us all #YosemiteDreaming

THE WINNERS WITH THE MOST VOTES:

1st Place: Mayra D.Blackbird Pond (Mayra D.)

1186 points
Blackbird Pond
Prize: 2-night stay

MD: “The day after a snowfall, the weather was amazing, air crisp, and sun was shining. It was perfect”

RCL: Your words beautifully pair with this picture. Those early spring days are magic!

Runner Up: Rachel M.Just Married (Rachel M.)

528 points
Just Married
Prize: 1-night stay

RM: “We had the most amazing wedding experience. While we had a couple people break ankles, and I thought I broke my toe, we had THE BEST weekend! We can’t wait to spend our anniversary here next year!”

RCL: We are so happy to hear how much fun you all had! We can’t wait to welcome you all back next year and hope your toe doesn’t suffer this next time around!

Runner Up: Robert T.Yosemite Fun (Robert T.)

356 points
Yosemite Fun
Prize: 1-night stay

RT: “This was my family’s second trip to Rush Creek Lodge in January. We love visiting Yosemite and Rush Creek Lodge! We always have so much fun coming here.”

RCL: Thank you for sharing such a sweet family photo! We can’t wait to welcome you all back this coming January!

SOME HONORABLE MENTIONS WE LOVED:

Spring Break by Merian H.Spring Break (Merian H.)

MH: “Traveling, Learning and Exploring! What an unforgettable spring break!!”

RCL: We can get behind this! There’s so much to be learned from Yosemite.

 

Vernal Fall by Katarina L.Vernal Fall (Katarina L.)

KL: “We visited Rush Creek Lodge and Yosemite in early April of this year. In a last minute change of plans we decided to go on the Mist Trail but took the much more challenging (and snowy) winter route because of the snow. I am so glad we did, because it was our favorite hike 😊 And you can’t top this view of Vernal falls once we reached Clarke’s Point!”

RCL: We love when a challenging hike has an epic reward like this! We’re so proud of you for making it all the way!

 

Crack a Geode by Erica C.Crack a Geode (Erica C.)

EC: “My son had the time of his life opening a geode with his dad. We love Rush Creek, and all of the fun activities the Lodge offers!”

RCL: What’s more fun than smashing rocks with your dad!?

 

Hetch Hetchy by Jamie A.Hetch Hetchy (Jamie A.)

JA: “This was taken on April 11 on the Wapama Falls Trail on the north side of the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir. There was some kind of red flower in the moss beds that really made this already exquisite setting pop! We only saw a few dozen people the whole time and in the late afternoon felt like we had the whole place to ourselves!!”

RCL: The colors in this picture are captivating! We’re so happy you were rewarded with a quiet trail. This is what Hetch Hetchy is known and loved for!

 

Rainbow by Scott T.Rainbow (Scott T.)

ST: “Under the rainbow Wampa Falls, Hetch Hetchy!!”

RCL: This is magical!

 

Summer Photo Contest: S’more Yosemite Summer Fun

RCL: Thanks for all the love everyone!

Our new contest is underway – “S’more Yosemite Summer Fun” is open to all who are dreaming of their next Yosemite visit.  If you have a favorite Yosemite image and a memory you’d like to share, feel free to join in the fun.

S’more Yosemite Summer Fun

You just might win a free stay at Rush Creek Lodge!

Book Your Next Yosemite Adventure

When you’re ready to plan your next trip, remember to check our Packages & Special Offers section for great seasonal deals and convenient bundles for a variety of occasions.   Also remember that when you book with us directly on this website, by calling us at (209) 379-2373, or emailing us at info@rushcreeklodge.com, you’re guaranteed to get the best rates and service.

Book Now

Can’t get enough of these amazing guest photos and stories?

Visit the Gallery and keep #YosemiteDreaming until we meet again.

Happy trails from your friends at Rush Creek!

15 Local Attractions and Activities at Rush Creek Lodge & Spa at Yosemite

We’re surrounded by the beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountain Range that makes for the ultimate hiking, biking, and lodging adventures. At the lodge we’re enjoying a spring for the history books with blooming wildflowers and raging waterfalls. Here’s a list of 15 local attractions and activities that guests are enjoying right now during the waterfall and wildflower season of a lifetime!

1. Carlon Falls

Carlon Falls (Mark F.)

Carlon Falls is a picture perfect waterfall located in the Stanislaus National Forest AND Yosemite National Park. Did you know you actually hike into Yosemite when you do this trail? The falls are formed by the South Fork of the Tuolumne River, and are accessed by a 1.5-mile hiking trail that winds through the forest along the river. This is the perfect morning or afternoon hike!

This picture was taken last week May 8th, 2023 and the falls are absolutely roaring!

 

2. O’Shaughnessy dam at Hetch HetchyHetch Hetchy Dam (Matt L.)

The perfect stop for people of all ages!

The O’Shaughnessy Dam itself is a fascinating engineering marvel. If you’ve never walked on top of a 400′ tall dam, this opportunity is not to be missed. The true scale of this massive monolith cannot be appreciated until you’ve peered over the dam to the river below (vertigo sufferers beware!). From the Dam you can also see Tallulah and Wapama falls that are at peak flow right now.

 

3. Wapama Falls at hetch hetchyWild Flowers at Hetch Hetchy (Jamie A.)

From a recent guest: “This was taken on April 11 on the Wapama Falls Trail on the north side of the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir. There was some kind of red flower in the moss beds that really made this already exquisite setting pop! We only saw a few dozen people the whole time and in the late afternoon felt like we had the whole place to ourselves!! The Adam’s Family (note only one D) can’t wait to go back.” – Jamie A.

Put this on your Yosemite bucket list ASAP so you don’t miss the wildflowers!

We can help you find your way if you want to explore on your own, or you can join one of our professionally guided excursions!

 

4. Lookout Point hetch HETCHYHetch Hetchy Vista

Lookout Point is another exceptional hike to a 360-degree panoramic vista that few Yosemite visitors ever experience.

Starting from the Hetch Hetchy Ranger Station, it’s a fairly steep 1-2 hour hike with stunning views that will have you feeling on top of the world!  More details…

 

5. Rainbow PoolsRainbow Pools (Kim Carroll)

Rainbow Pools is a series of natural swimming holes along the South Fork of the Tuolumne River where you can dip your feet, take a plunge or just watch courageous kids jump from the rock lined ledges into the largest of the inviting pools. Just like other natural pools in the Yosemite area, these are sure to be overflowing this year!

 

6. Middle forkMiddle Fork (Andrea L.)

If your time is limited, consider heading to the Middle Fork of the Tuolumne a short 10 minute drive on Evergreen Road.

Here you can splash around in gorgeous granite pools and enjoy the shade of the pines for a quick nap or a picnic overlooking the river.

 

7. White water raftingWhite Water Rafting (Lori Larocque)

After the winter we had, you know this is one for the adrenaline junkies!

Experience the exhilaration of the finest whitewater rafting in the state on the beautiful Tuolumne River.  The “T” is known for its rocky, technical drops. Reserve on our website.

 

8. BIkingFamily Bike Rentals

We have the perfect backyard for your biking adventures, and yes we rent bikes!

Just behind the lodge there’s a quiet forest road which makes for a smooth ride surrounded by Stanislaus National Forest. If you’re looking for something a bit more challenging, our Adventure Trail is the perfect 3 mile loop for mountain biking. Find more about our rentals here.

 

9. Extended Valley Explorer &Yosemite Valley View (Santino T.)

Range of Light tour

Join our professional tour guides while following the footsteps of John Muir!

Let us be your backstage pass to Yosemite as you visit the Valley’s most famous and impressive wonders and hidden secrets, with plenty of time to stop, relax and enjoy. Book your tour here.

 

10. Hite CoveHite Cove (Andrea L.)

This hike is the ultimate spot for the best wildflower season yet.  Located off Highway 140, enjoy 6.5 miles of scenery along the southern fork of the Merced River or just a short walk to see blooming wildflowers!

Be sure to bring sunscreen and water because this trail gets a lot of sunlight!

Looking for a different kind of adventure? Try these!

11. Sunset Vista Happy Hour TourSunset Vista Happy Hour (Kim Carroll)

Cheese, wine, and a stunning Sierra Sunset, what better way to end your day?

Join our recreation guides for a short drive into the Sierra Nevadas that brings you to the top of the Tuolumne River Canyon as the sun dips over the ridges. Reserve your tour now on our website! 

 

12. Off-Road Jeep ToursMiller Brother Jeep Tours

Explore the doorstep of Yosemite National Park during this off road adventure tour through the pristine Stanislaus National Forest where you will experience the breathtaking views and incredible wildlife of the Tuolumne River Canyon! For more information and to book online click here.

 

13. Yosemite flight toursYosemite Flight Tours

See Yosemite, like never before!

An air tour is a perfect way to explore this remote country quickly and provides unmatched photography perspectives. Choose from a variety of tours soaring over the Emigrant wilderness and Yosemite National Park. For more info click here.

 

14. Glass blowingGlassblowing with Maggie Bean (Corey M.)

Join our expert glass blower Maggie Bean as she teaches you the art of making colorful and unique glass pieces to take home with you!

Our favorite part of this activity is how satisfying the melted glass looks when you mold it! Click here to book a session with Maggie Bean

15. Stargazing

Rush Creek Stargazing (Kim Carroll 9-17_303 4800)

Experience the night sky like never before! Up close to nature’s light show, you’ll be gazing through our 12″ aperture Dobsonian telescope with go to tracking technology.

Learn about constellations, observe planets, nebulas, galaxies and other celestial wonders. Book now on our website!