Benson Pass–Northeast Yosemite Grand Tour

Yosemite, California

Benson Pass–Northeast Yosemite Grand Tour Professional Review and Guide

"This extended backpack loop is probably the most challenging hike in the book. Not only is the distance long and the changes in elevation extreme (between 4,400 and 10,000 feet), but your window of opportunity is narrow.

The high north country may still have lots of snow while the low point in Pate Valley can be hot. Still, for most of the way, you?ll have solitude and a good sampling of remote Yosemite in all its variety."

Benson Pass–Northeast Yosemite Grand Tour Reviews

5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars
icon2 Total
The trail was nice. For water, definitely use the lakes that have moving water otherwise it's a bit gritty. Definitely best to do the trail counterclockwise. We didn't since we got there late and need to grab a campsite quickly. The view as nice but the water source wasn't as great as it could have been if we had continued further along the trail. We'll definitely go back earlier in the season as some of the smaller water-ways were dry. But still worth it. Most people were there for the day-hike or to fish.
An easy hike around a number (20?) of incredibly beautiful lakes. The boat trip is well worth the money, since it gives you more time to take side trips around the various lakes. I have done the loop in both directions, and suggest counterclockwise. WARNING! The map in the book is wrong for how the trail goes around Lakes Helen and Shamrock. The store at the trail head gives away a map that has all these things right.

Benson Pass–Northeast Yosemite Grand Tour Photos

Help others discover amazing sights!

Trail Information

Nearby City
6,800 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
5 to 9 days
Summer through early fall
Yosemite National Park
Local Contacts
USGS Dunderberg Peak, Falls Ridge, Matterhorn Peak, Ten Lakes, and Tioga Pass quads
Local Maps