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Tenaya Lake Trail

Difficult
 3.5 (4)

This long distance route through Tuolumne's heart skirts Tenaya Lake then approaches the Valley rim


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Map Key

13.4

Miles

21.6

KM

Point to Point

8,707' 2,654 m

High

7,707' 2,349 m

Low

986' 301 m

Up

1,888' 575 m

Down

4%

Avg Grade (2°)

39%

Max Grade (21°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Description

Starting from the Cathedral Lakes trailhead, head west paralleling Tioga Road past all the famous domes: Pothole, Fariview, Medlicott, Polly and Pywiack. Join up with Tenaya Creek and follow it to the east end of Tenaya Lake. The trail skirts the southern shoreline and continues over level ground until about the 9 mile mark. Climb up to Olmstead Point and take in the huge panoramic views. After an bit more ascending over more granite slabs, leave Tioga Road behind. Descend a more wooded canyon, then climb back up to a saddle formed by the shoulder of Mount Watkins. From here it is downhill to a forested flat spot where the trail ends at an intersection with the Snow Creek Canyon Trail.

Flora & Fauna

Your surroundings on this trail will vary between dense riparian vegetation, exposed rocky side slopes and open forest.

Contacts

Land Manager: NPS - Yosemite

Shared By:

Brian Smith

Trail Ratings

  3.5 from 4 votes

#20706

Overall
  3.5 from 4 votes
5 Star
25%
4 Star
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3 Star
75%
2 Star
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1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#2,151

in California

#20,706

Overall
9 Views Last Month
1,837 Since May 7, 2015
Difficult

0%
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25%
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Photos

A view of the lake from the end where it drains out into Tenaya Canyon.  This end of the lake is popular for swimmers in the summer.
Mar 8, 2016 near Yosemit…, CA
View over Tenaya Lake
May 17, 2016 near Yosemit…, CA
Tenaya Lake during sunrise
Aug 12, 2020 near Yosemit…, CA
Domes and Tenaya Lake.
Mar 8, 2016 near Yosemit…, CA
Looking across Tenaya Lake.
Mar 8, 2016 near Yosemit…, CA
Tenaya Lake and the surround domes that make the area beautiful.
Mar 8, 2016 near Yosemit…, CA

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Check-Ins

Oct 28, 2020
Mike Nugent
Just walked along Lake Tenaya south side up and back. Gorgeous. — 12h 00m
Jul 4, 2019
Chi Zhang
Nov 10, 2018
Susan N
Aug 23, 2018
Lesley Wargo
Jul 19, 2018
philip lz
Jul 28, 2017
Nika E
Jul 20, 2017
Justin Gonzalez
Oct 19, 2016
Sam Vanderhyden
Test 1mi