Ostrander Lake Trail

Yosemite Village, California 95353

Ostrander Lake Trail

Ostrander Lake Trail Professional Review and Guide

"Dominated by snowy granite ridges and lined with conifers and granite slabs, 25-acre Ostrander Lake invites a stroll around its vase-shaped shoreline. Climb a mere 500 feet in elevation (check ahead for avalanche conditions) and mount Horse Ridge for inspirational views of snow-gouged Mount Starr King to the north and the entire Clark Range to the east. This is a popular trip, especially during winter and spring weekends when large groups snowshoe or cross-country ski to the stone ski hut. Snowshoers and cross-country skiers can stay in Ostrander Hut if they’ve reserved it. For the most privacy, backpack in with snowshoes during the dead of winter on a weekday. With a mix of deep wild forest, numerous meadow strips, moving water, and a lake, this route offers a lot of chances to view wildlife. If you’re planning on doing this all in one day, please be in good shape, leave at the crack of dawn, and be proactive about time factors."

More Ostrander Lake Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"Ostrander Lake, being the closest lake to the Glacier Point Road, is the objective of many summertime weekend backpackers. It is also popular in winter and spring with cross-country skiers. You might consider dayhiking to it, since with a day pack it is only a two- to three-hour hike to the lake, and dayhiking lessens human impact on the lake’s environment."

"The powerful beauty and peaceful setting attract year-round visitors to Ostrander Lake. This granite-rimmed, tree-fringed lake is an ideal weekend family outing or long day trip for the hardy hiker."

"The stone hut at Ostrander Lake is a favorite winter destination for skiers. In summer there is good camping near the lakeside and lots of flowers along the way. The out-and-back trail is relatively flat at the beginning, undulates a bit in the middle, and leaves most of the serious elevation gain for the end."

Ostrander Lake Trail Reviews

4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
icon1 Total
4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
Fun trail and worth it to see the lake! The beginning of the trail is relatively flat with most of the elevation gain in the second half of the hike. The trail is well maintained and well marked. There are limited views, but there is a chance to get a new perspective on Yosemite Valley about 3/4 of the way in. The lake is beautiful, surrounded by lots of huge boulders. The best campsites are to your right when you arrive off the trail. However, with a day pack this could easily be a day hike since it is only 12 miles round trip.

Ostrander Lake Trail Photos

Help others discover amazing sights!

Trail Information

Yosemite Village
Nearby City
2,000 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
11 hours or overnight
Yosemite National Park
Local Contacts
USGS Half Dome, USGS Mariposa Grove
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Oct 2018