Young Lakes Loop Trail

This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
23.3 km
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
776 m
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Directions to Trailhead

The Young Lakes Loop Trail is an awesome adventure in Yosemite National Park that delivers epic vistas of the granite bluffs and alpine lakes that adorn the landscape. Wander through meadowlands, mixed pine forest, and granite gardens on your way to the picture-perfect lakes.

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Route Description for Young Lakes Loop Trail

Explore Yosemite’s picturesque high country along the Young Lakes Loop Trail. This epic excursion is one of the most picturesque adventures, boasting panoramic views of various landscapes. If you are seeking a more secluded adventure, this trek checks that box. Enjoy the solitude as you meander to the shimmering Young Lakes, but be sure to wear sturdy footwear, as sections as this path are incredibly rocky and are known to roll the odd ankle! Note: this path is only accessible when the Tioga Pass Road is open. The Yosemite National Park charges an entrance fee; refer to the NPS website for additional information and a pricing guide.

Setting out from the trailhead, the Young Lakes Loop Trail follows the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail #2000. Follow this path northwest and enjoy the view of the encompassing granite peaks. Continue along the trail all the way to the intersection with Young Lake Trail, where you will veer right and begin to climb more intensely. This path will weave between meadows and mixed pine forests before reaching the charming lakes. Explore the three picturesque bodies of water flanked by granite peaks.

Take a dip into the inviting waters and, when you are ready, head back along the Young Lake Trail until you meet an intersection. Head south here along the Young Lake via Dog Lake Trail and follow the path down to Dog Lake. Eventually, you will merge onto the Dog Lake Trail, which will deliver you back to the trailhead.

Getting to the Young Lakes Loop Trail Trailhead

The Young Lakes Loop Trail departs from the Dog Lake Trailhead and Parking Lot off Tioga Pass Road.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    Dispersed Backcountry Camping, Wilderness Permit Required.

  • When to do


  • Pets allowed


  • Family friendly


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Young Lakes Loop Trail Elevation Graph

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