Backpacking in Yosemite National Park – Day 1 Tuolumne Meadows to Vogelsang High Sierra Camp

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Rafferty Creek Trailhead at Yosemite National Park
During this episode of travel photography we take off on the first part of our backpacking trip in Yosemite National Park.  Our total hike for the trip will be about 30 miles, and we cover 7 miles during this first day.  

Hitch Hiking in Yosemite National Park
Our failed attempt at hitch hiking





We started by trying to hitch hike from Yosemite Valley to our trail head at Tuolumne Meadows, but oddly nobody stopped to pickup three random guys on the side of road…  We ended up taking the shuttle up from Yosemite Valley to Tuolumne Meadows where we found our Rafferty Creek trail head.  Our original plan was to leave the trail head first thing in the morning, but since we couldn’t catch a ride up to Tuolumne Meadows the night before and had to take the shuttle, we didn’t get on the trail until around 11am.  













First bridge / water crossing at Rafferty Creek
First water sighting at Rafferty Creek



Very early into the hike we started to see some amazing scenery.  I couldn’t help myself from stoping to take pictures even though we were behind schedule and less than a mile into the hike.  I am glad I stopped because this was one of the most scenic sights of the day with the lake, mountain in the background, and a fisherman in the distance.















Too much weight and not in good shape = difficult
Too much weight and not in good shape = difficult
 

As we continued to hike, I quickly realized that I was facing a few challenges.  
– First, I packed way too much in my backpack since my pack weight was over 55 pounds.  This earned me the trail name, Turtle, since my back was huge on my back and I was super slow.
– Second, I was not in the shape that I needed to be in order to handle the upward climbs and high elevation.  This could be a long few days…










Fortunately, the scenery continued to amaze as we continued up the trail on our way to Vogelsang High Sierra camp.  We even climbed over a few snow passes en route to our campsite for the evening at Vogelsang High Sierra Camp.  Since we were there at the end of June (2016), the Vogelsang High Sierra Camp was not yet open, so we had it all to ourselves.

Hiking towards Vogelsang High Sierra Camp
Hiking towards Vogelsang High Sierra Camp
Snow pass near Vogelsang High Sierra Camp
Snow pass near Vogelsang High Sierra Camp
We were all alone when we reached Vogelsang High Sierra Camp since it wasn't open for the season yet in late June.
We were all alone when we reached Vogelsang High Sierra Camp since it wasn’t open for the season yet in late June.
Video References and Appreciation:

Map illustrated by www.jamesniehues.com
Map purchased from www.trailtracks.com



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Vogelsang to Merced Lake

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