Hiking Yosemite's Cathedral Lakes Trail

Yosemite National Park - Day 1

A Legendary Path Through Granite Giants

We spent a magnificent day conquering the Cathedral Lakes Trail in Yosemite National Park’s Tuolumne Meadows. The hike followed a section of the John Muir Trail, a legendary long-distance path that crosses the heart of the Sierra Nevada.
Our hike began with a steady climb through subalpine forests, gaining over 1,000 feet in elevation to reach the granite-rimmed jewel of Upper Cathedral Lake at 9,605 ft. The crisp air vitalized us as we continued, enjoying breathtaking panoramas of the imposing Cathedral Peak and the surrounding granite giants.

A Serene Detour and a Rewarding Journey

A short detour led us to the equally stunning Lower Cathedral Lake, nestled amidst a serene meadow. Thanks to the captivating scenery, it felt like we had hiked less than 5 hours by the time we completed the 10.61-mile (17km) round trip. Spending days in a fantastic wilderness like this can be challenging, but those days are always energizing and worthwhile.

More Visits to Yosemite National Park


Wednesday, September 13, 2023


10.61 miles

Moving Time

4:49:14 hours


70 °F, sunny, moderate breeze