Pets allowed
Not Allowed
Elevation Gain
10,818.00 ft (3,297.33 m)
Trail type
Loop
Distance
56.70 mi (91.25 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne + PCT Loop presents an exhilarating 56.7-mile backpacking adventure within Yosemite National Park. Starting from Tuolumne Meadows, the route tracks alongside the Tuolumne River and forms a loop by linking up with the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT). It is accessible to hikers, trail runners, and backpackers seeking a captivating wilderness experience.


While exploring the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne, adventurers escape the bustling crowds without compromising on breathtaking views. It boasts magnificent waterfalls, alpine meadows with colorful springtime wildflowers, rugged peaks, and smooth granite domes. The route enters areas of the park that are difficult to access within a day, providing a wonderful opportunity for seclusion and pristine camping.


Starting from Tuolumne Meadows, the path initially follows the PCT northbound for approximately 5.5 miles. Next, it crosses the Tuolumne River, veers left, and heads west along the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne. At Pate Valley, make a right turn and proceed northwest before heading westward to Rogers Canyon. Just before reaching the intersection with the PCT, there's an optional detour leading to Neall Lake and/or Rogers Lake. Once you reach the junction with the PCT, turn right and follow the PCT southbound back to Tuolumne Meadows. There are many trails in the Yosemite area, so this route can easily be altered to suit hikers' needs.

Note that while the route is described clockwise, it can be completed in either direction. 

PERMITS
Wilderness permits are required for overnight camping in Yosemite National Park. More information about permits and making permit reservations can be found at https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/wpres.htm. 

GLEN AULIN
You will pass the Glen Aulin High Sierra camp twice, at around mile 5.5 and mile 51. Information about this High Sierra camp can be found at: https://www.travelyosemite.com/lodging/high-sierra-camps/. 

WEATHER
Always check the current conditions before heading out on any hike. For information about Yosemite weather please visit https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/weathermap.htm.

SEASONAL CLOSURES
Yosemite National Park is located off of Tioga Pass Road which usually remains open June-November. Information about Tioga Pass Road can be found here https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/tiogaopen.htm. 
 

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Spring
Fall
Summer

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

National Park Pass

Open Year-round

Yes

Days

4

Pros

Scenic Views. Singletrack Trail. Solitude.

Cons

Requires advanced permit for camping.

Trailhead Elevation

8,672.00 ft (2,643.23 m)

Highest point

10,062.00 ft (3,066.90 m)

Features

Near lake or river
Backcountry camping
Waterfalls
Wildlife
Geologically significant
Big vistas
Wildflowers

Typically multi-day

Yes

Permit required

Yes

Permit self-issue on site

No

Location

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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