The Tioga Road (Highway 120) climbs above the Valley, transporting you to breathtaking views and pristine lakes. After sweeping across enchanting Tuolumne Meadows, it cuts through the mountains at Tioga Pass.
The biggest question of the year in Yosemite is always “When will Tioga Pass Open?” This can be difficult to answer as it it typically based on how much snow has fallen the previous winter over the pass. Check here to see the plowing update for this season.
This is the high country, nearly inaccessible in winter, when heavy snows blanket the road and freeze the rivers.
In the spring and summer months, winter melts away and the meadows bloom. The waters of Tenaya Lake and the Tuolumne River soak up the heat of the sun, inviting you to swim, fish, and hike along their banks.
Spot flowering purple lupine and bright yellow monkey’s paw and slide otter-like through river rapids in Tuolumne Meadows. Lay out on sun-warmed granite slabs, or get your heart rate up scaling Lembert Dome. On your way up the Tioga Road, pull over at the Olmsted Point overlook to see the Valley laid out beneath your feet.
Splash in the Tuolumne River or dip into Dog, Tenaya, and May lakes. Away from the bustle of the Valley, wildlife makes frequent appearances on the shore.
The high country also offers exceptional hiking trails. The High Sierra Camps, accessible from Tuolumne Meadows, are a favorite with backpackers.