May Lake from Sunrise Lakes Trailhead

MODERATE 14 reviews
#71 of 238 trails in

May Lake from Sunrise Lakes Trailhead is a 6.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Yosemite Valley, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from May until October.

Distance: 6.8 miles Elevation Gain: 1,204 feet Route Type: Out & Back


nature trips

bird watching




wild flowers


no dogs

This hike is part of the High Sierra Loop, a series of 6 camps located between Tuolumne Meadows and Yosemite Valley. These camps have facilities for backpackers, but the best way to go is to stay in the tent cabins which includes great meals. Most of the camps can be reached via a day hike from either Yosemite Valley or Tuolumne Meadows. Note that May Lake can also be reached from a parking area that is only a few miles from the camp.

7 days ago

The road to the parking lot for the May Lake trailhead was closed, so we parked at the Sunrise Lakes trailhead and walked along Tioga Road until we got to the trailhead for this route. It was a nice hike from there. There was an incline, but it wasn’t too steep. It was rocky, so I definitely recommend hiking boots (or at least trail running shoes). There was shade from the pine trees and wildflowers along the way. The lake was beautiful. We actually went a little past May Lake to a place where you can get a great view of the surrounding mountains. Altogether, it’s a great day hike. I recommend getting to the Sunrise Lakes trailhead early, to get a parking spot.

11 months ago

We had a wonderful guided tour with Ranger Jacqueline Ramirez. This is an absolutely beautiful Trail. We tried to hike up now coughing but it was just too strenuous. Even if you go a little way the views are spectacular

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Nice hike up to the lake and not too strenuous. Unfortunately the day we went it’s was very hazy due to a wildfire outside the west side of the park so visibility wasn’t great. We also walked on for another mile or two to extend the hike. Bug spray is a must!

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Hiked to May Lake day after Independence Day after landing a wilderness permit the week before. It's a 2 mi drive via a potholed road to the trail head. Once parked, make sure you pay attention to the trail head signs, there's 2 trails leaving the lot. A moderate 2 mi hike takes you to Lake May and the High Seirra Camp. After finding a crowded campground, decided to hike 2 more miles past the lake to fine solitude. Came upon a beautiful pond surrounded by granite and meadows - postcard picture perfect hiking/camping! The site was beyond the NPS wilderness camp arrow head and below 9,400' so campfires were permitted. Only complaint were the mosquitos, make sure to bring bug spray, it's worked but had to apply every 20-30 min. Absolutely awesome moderate hike! On the return hike, cast my fly into Lake May, but not a sign of any fish - though was greeted by a woodchuck ;)

Thursday, November 27, 2014

I have never seem so many Mosquitos in my life. Pure torture. They swarm.

Friday, July 19, 2013

I went in the opposite direction, from May Lake to Sunrise Lakes. The downhill from May Lake to Teyana Lake is nice and easy, but the climb from Teyana to Sunrise is mostly steep and unrelenting. It is very cool to look across the valley and see where you were earlier that same day, the peaks that tower above May Lake, There's not much water between Teyana and Sunrise Lakes so fill up at the bottom. The lakes themselves are a good place to take a quick dip after a hot climb. And although I didn't stay there that night (I went ahead to Cathedral Lakes), the backpackers campground at Sunrise High Sierrra Camp had great views overlooking a huge meadow.

1 month ago

9 months ago

11 months ago

11 months ago

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Thursday, July 18, 2013

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