Dewey Point Via the Meadow Trail


Difficulty 3 Intermediate
Length 6.8 miles round trip
7250 feet
+850, -850 round trip
Navigation Road (groomed) and marked trail
Time Most of a day
Season December through mid-April
Snowmobiles Not permitted [Please report illegal use of snowmobiles in this area.]
USGS Topo 7.5' series, El Capitan
Start Badger Pass Ski Area on Glacier Point Road. The trailhead is located at the north end of the parking lot.


The tour to Dewey Point is the classic tour in Yosemite and one of the most popular tours in California. The dramatic view of Yosemite Valley 3300 feet below beckons skiers and snowshoers, and is reason enough to brave the weekend crowds. But visit mid-week and you will be among the few visiting Dewey Point.

This tour, along the Meadow Trail, is the easier of the two routes to Dewey Point. The Ridge Trail is slightly more difficult and the two routes can be combined to form a loop.

The first part of the tour to Dewey Point via the Meadow Trail is deceptively easy as it follows Glacier Point Road and then passes through a large meadow. But beyond the meadow the trail is narrow with short, but steep ups and downs that make skiing difficult for those who are not nimble on their skis.

Mileage Log
Numbers in parentheses
correspond to mileage points on map

Miles: 0.0 - 0.7
Elevation change: +150, -50 feet

From the trailhead (1) ski northeast on the groomed trail and Glacier Point Road for 0.7 mile until you reach a high point (2). The first 50 yards is not actually on the road, but you will probably not notice the transition from the connecting trail to the road.

Miles: 0.7 - 1.0
Elevation change: -50 feet

Continue skiing on Glacier Point Road for 0.3 mile until you reach the turnoff for the Meadow Trail (5) located at the east end of Summit Meadow. The turnoff is marked with a sign and trail is designated number 18.

Miles: 1.0 - 1.3
Elevation change: -50 feet

Ski north on the Meadow Trail for 0.3 mile until you reach the south end of a meadow (6).

Miles: 1.3 - 1.9
Elevation change: Nil

Ski north along the east (right) side of the meadow for 0.6 mile until you reach the north end of the meadow (7).

Miles: 1.9 - 2.2
Elevation change: +100 feet

Enter the trees and climb north for 0.3 miles until you reach the top of a small hill (8).

Miles: 2.2 - 2.6
Elevation change: +50, -50 feet

Continue north on the Meadow Trail for 0.4 mile until you reach the intersection with the Ridge Trail (9). It is easy not to notice the intersection and it's not a problem when you are skiing out to Dewey Point. However, on your return you need to recognize the intersection and make a conscious choice between the two routes because both may be tracked.

Miles: 2.6 - 3.4
Elevation change: +150, -200 feet

Continue north on the combined Meadow and Ridge trails for 0.8 mile until you reach Dewey Point (10). Once there you can ski in either direction along the valley rim to get away from the crowds.

Miles: 3.4 - 6.8
Elevation change: +400, -450 feet

Retrace the route for 3.4 miles back to the trailhead (1) or as an alternative return via the Ridge Trail.

Elevation Profile
Elevation profile
Link to elevation profile
Link to waypoint data
Link to full page map
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