Trip Report (Lower Cathedral Lake)

Important Stats:

3.2 miles (one way), 4.3% average grade, 1107 feet of ascent and 371 feet of descent. GPS Download


(Topo map generated from Garmin Basecamp)


(Profile of trail towards Cathedral Lake, 1-way)

Trip Report:

For our Praxis (Young adult) ministry outing in the Fall, we went on the Lower Cathedral Lake hike.  We took off from Davis Friday afternoon and reached 395S by way of Monitor Pass, arriving at Conway Summit right at dusk.


Since our gourmet chef was in charge of food, when we reached the Oh Ridge campground in June Lake loop we ate like kings before turning in for the night.  There were even a rack of rips and a can of abalone…



We didn’t encounter any traffic on the Tioga Road and got to the trailhead in good time.  We found the trailhead on the left just before the meadow adjacent to Pothole Dome.


Either because of the dinner size, or because we didn’t acclimatize properly, most got hammered by the switchbacks that climb up the first 500 ft or so.  But that really was the more difficult portion of the trail.  By the time you got to here:


the toughest climbing was already over.  The rest of the hike was quite a pleasant walk towards the lake.  For our hike, we ended up going to the Lower Cathedral Lake.  Navigation was easy, the only fork was here and we took the right one.  The left fork would have taken us to the Upper Cathedral Lake.


There was a downhill stretch going to the basin and after awhile, you would be seeing a body of water from the distance.  Here comes Lower Cathedral Lake!


The forest was where we walked out from.


And of course Cathedral Peak was the perfect backdrop for a kung-fu scene.


The return trip was uneventful and going downhill obviously was much easier for most, not to mention we got to take in the view of the Tuolumne Meadow.


It was not long till we arrived at our cars.  Before heading back to Davis, we went to the famous Tioga gas mart and had one final meal at the Whoa Nelli Deli before heading back.  As was customary I ordered the steak salad… very much worth it!


Until next time!


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