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Celebrate the light through back country yoga practice, outdoor adventure and deep relaxation over the longest days of the year. The summer solstice is a perfect time for transition and renewal, and what better place to experience this than the Sierra Nevadas Range of Light. Yoga retreat in Yosemite National Park takes some of the most amazing outdoor yoga studios in the world. Backpacking, outdoor yoga, community and ecology are weaved into a journey of body, mind and spirit. As we move towards the end of our time together, there will be a special emphasis on the development of a home practice, bringing our experience out of the High Sierra mountains and into our home and daily life.
You will meet at the trailhead at 9 a.m. on your first morning. It will be time for introductions and trip orientation. Next you will have thorough instruction on what and how to pack your packs and then be on your merry way. It may take the entirety of the day to arrive at camp. The group will stop for breaks and to enjoy the scenery. You will enjoy a delicious dinner after yoga as the Range of Light, bathed in alpenglow, lives up to its reputation. Evenings may include fireside stories, music, or gazing at the Milky Way from the cozy comfort of your sleeping bags.
The next days allows you to adapt to the natural rhythms of the planet and flow with the specific needs and desires of the group. After a morning yoga session and breakfast, the group will pack and journey out on a day hike through some of Yosemite’s finest scenery, or move camp to a new location. You may now feel a settling in to your new home among granite domes and peaceful lake waters. In addition to the adventure of backpacking, each day provides opportunities for swimming in alpine lakes, day-hikes to sweeping views of the High Sierra, and perhaps relaxing in our backcountry “hammock lounge”. Evenings are set aside for dharma talks, wilderness education, creative journaling, music-making, or quiet contemplation around the campfire.
On the last morning, you will enjoy a final yoga class and meditation before sharing the final breakfast together in the field. Then you will pack your backpacks and begin hiking to the exit trailhead. After putting closure on the journey together, you will aim to conclude by 2 p.m.
This schedule is an outline. It is subject to change depending on the needs of the group and allowing for spontaneous inspiration. Almost all of the activities offered are optional. This program operates rain or shine.
Jon-Paul has been a resident of Catheys Valley since childhood. In adolescence, he realized that healing and spirituality were his calling. Jon-Paul graduated from the California College of Ayurveda (CCA), in 2002, and established Blue Oak Ayurveda shortly thereafter. He is also a certified massage therapist, trained in myofascial release, trigger points and Ayurvedic Abyanga, Shirodhara, and Swedana relaxation and cleansing treatments. His yoga instruction is a creative blend of Vinyasa flow practice infused with his deep knowledge of health and wellness practice.
Deeply familiar with Sierra Nevada ecology, Breezy just completed her doctorate in Ecosystem Ecology. Breezy began practicing yoga in 2003 to enhance her balance, core strength, and mental acuity as a collegiate rower. Later she studied Iyengar Yoga for five years with Jeri Stewart at the Moscow Yoga Center in Idaho. During this time, she also received a Masters of Science in Leadership in Physical Education and Recreation, worked as a graduate assistant in the Wellness Program at the University of Idaho, and designed and tested an evaluation and assessment tool for group fitness instructors.
Tuolumne Meadows Campground is located in breathtaking Yosemite National Park in Central California's rugged Sierra Nevada Mountain Range at an elevation of 8,600 feet. The site is situated along the scenic Tioga Road just five miles from the Tioga Pass Entrance Station. Within Yosemite, visitors can gaze upon waterfalls, sheer granite cliffs, deep valleys, grand meadows, ancient giant sequoias, vast wilderness areas, and so much more.
Fresh meals provided include local and organic ingredients.
Yosemite Valley, an awe-inspiring landscape containing many of the famous features for which Yosemite National Park is known, is 55 miles and two hours from Tuolumne Meadows. Hiking trails and bike paths are abundant in the valley. Rafting the Merced River is a fun way to cool down on a summer day when water levels are sufficient. Yosemite Valley also offers numerous guided bus tours, educational programs, museums, ranger-led activities, and an art center with workshops.
Glacier Point is an hour from Yosemite Valley, with sweeping views of both, Yosemite and Little Yosemite Valley, Half Dome, Vernal and Nevada Falls, and Clouds Rest, among other notable landmarks. A visit to Wawona and the Pioneer Yosemite History Center is like stepping back in time. The Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias is a must-see. A guided bus tour (tickets must be purchased) and a network of hiking trails leads to stately trees with names like Grizzly Giant, Faithful Couple, and California Tunnel Tree.
Take Highway 41 north from Fresno
Take Highway 140 east from Merced
Take Highway 120 east from Manteca or west from Lee Vining (State Route 395) into Yosemite National Park
Tuolumne Meadows Campground is located 5 miles from the Tioga Pass Entrance station (Highway 120 from the east), and is 55 miles (2 hours) from Yosemite Valley.
Nearby commercially served airports include:
Fresno / Yosemite International Airport (FAT): 1 hour to Southern entrance via Highway CA 41. 2 hours to the heart of Yosemite Valley. 3 hours to Tuolumne Meadows. There is no public transportation from Fresno to Yosemite.
San Francisco International Airport (SFO): 2 hours to Big Oak Flat entrance via Highway CA 120, 3 hours to heart of Yosemite Valley. 4-5 hours to Tuolumne Meadows. Public transportation available to Yosemite.
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX): 6 hours to Yosemite Valley via I-5 to Highway CA 99 to Highway CA 41. Add another hour for travel to Tuolumne Meadows.
Oakland (OAK): 2 hours to Big Oak Flat entrance via Highway CA 120, 3 hours to heart of Yosemite Valley. 4-5 hours to Tuolumne Meadows. Public transportation available to Yosemite.
Sacramento (SMF): 2 hours to Big Oak Flat entrance via Highway CA 120, 3 hours to heart of Yosemite Valley, and 4-5 hours to Tuolumne Meadows. Public transportation available to Yosemite.
Amtrak trains serve San Diego, Los Angeles, Fresno, San Jose, San Francisco and Sacramento to and from Merced / Riverbank and connect with via bus lines for direct luxury motorcoach into Yosemite Valley. Fares include the bus travel and the park entrance fee.