Trail Mavens


Skill-based camping and backpacking trips for groups of extraordinary women. Ready to build fires, read maps, pitch tents, hike, laugh, and drink wine around the campfire? Join one of our weekend adventures.

Yosemite Camping


october 11 - 13

adventure type:


activity rating:


registration deadline:  sunday, October 6


Trip Highlights

HIKE in America's first (and greatest) national park, alpine lakes, stunning views, and moments of inspiration included.

HANDS-ON TRAINING so you can show off your skills next time you pitch a tent (we'll make sure you look like you've been doing it since you were a kid).

ZERO STRESS around literally any planning. We handle everything from permits to bug spray, so all you have to do is soak it in.

SPACE TO DISCONNECT from the day-to-day urban living, and stop, breathe, and focus on what's happening NOW.

THE MAVEN FACTOR, a.k.a what happens when you mix dynamic, thoughtful, open-hearted women for a weekend outside.

Enough SELF-CARE to get you through any hurdle. Eat gourmet backcountry meals, work your glutes on-trail, and enjoy the brilliance of Mama Nature.

Itinerary Summary


  • Early afternoon arrival at Yosemite, campsite set-up in Lower Pines right in the heart of the Valley, and Opening Ceremonies

  • Hike to Mirror Lake at the base of the iconic Half Dome, and catch glimpses of meadow wildlife during the evening “magic” hours

  • Learn our foolproof 'Flaming V' fire-building technique

  • Happy hour and dinner prep

  • Kick back in your camp chair with wine and s'mores, or crawl into your sleeping bag to catch some hard-earned Z's after the workweek

Click here for a map and detailed elevation profile of today's hike.



  • French-press coffee and hearty breakfast

  • Head up to Glacier Point to hike 5 miles on the Illilouette Falls Trail—see plenty of Yosemite Valley landmarks, including Half Dome, Royal Arches, and Nevada Falls

  • Cool off your toes in Illilouette Creek and devour a picnic lunch mid-hike

  • Take in the unbelievable views from Glacier Point and the famous Tunnel View vista (you’ll never forget the way this looks in the afternoon light)

  • Return to camp for fire-building, relaxation, and a hot second to reflect and give yourself a high five for your accomplishments

  • Massive dinner with fresh veggies galore, chocolate, and wine

Click here for a map and detailed elevation profile of today's hike.


  • French-press coffee and hearty breakfast part deux

  • Start the day early to beat the crowds with a two-mile hike up to the nearby Vernal Fall footbridge

  • Return to camp for break-down and pro tips on gear and trip planning

  • Lunch and Closing Ceremonies next to Bridalveil Fall, famous for the mist you’ll likely feel as well as see

  • Mid-afternoon departure for the Bay Area

Click here for a map and detailed elevation profile of today's hike.

Guides reserve the option to modify trip itineraries as necessary due to weather, illness, injury or other unforeseen incidents.


Every single Trail Mavens trip starts with strangers. But don't worry - if you're nervous about not knowing anyone or not being skilled enough, almost every Trail Maven says this before they go.

To feel more confident before signing on, read our FAQs for the info you need.

+ Packing List

  • Sleeping bag rated at 30° or colder
  • Sleeping pad
  • Headlamp & fresh batteries
  • A sense of adventure
  • Sleeping bag liner (if borrowing Trail Mavens sleeping bag)
  • Personal clothing
  • Sturdy, broken-in hiking shoes
  • Lightweight shoes/sandals for hanging out at our campsite that can be worn with socks (like Crocs/Tevas/Chacos rather than flip-flops)
  • Day pack to carry while hiking
  • Water bottles and/or hydration bladder with a minimum 2.5L capacity
  • Sunscreen/sun hat/sunglasses
  • Health insurance card & ID
  • Tampons/pads as needed
  • Toothbrush/toothpaste/toiletries
  • Personal medications
  • Glasses/contacts with solution
  • A pen
  • Field Notes notebook (Trail Mavens alumnae only)
  • Optional: hiking poles, small pillow, hand towel, earplugs, camera, bandana or Buff to keep sun off your neck, small bottle hand sanitizer

Items in bold provided at no additional cost for any women who does not have her own.

+ bathrooms and hygiene

Our campsite features running water and bathrooms, so you won't need to poop outdoors unless the urge strikes you during our long hike on Saturday. We will, however, teach you proper woods-pooping protocol, so you're ready should the need arise.

No need to change your plans because of your period. Period. For more detailed info on managing your time of the month in the outdoors, we recommend these posts by Snowqueen and Scout and REI.

+ transportation

You are responsible for your own transportation to and from Trail Mavens locations, but we'll help coordinate carpools or shared rentals for women leaving from the same area. Passengers will contribute to owners/drivers to cover the cost of gas and wear & tear, or evenly split the cost of the rental. This cost is not included in your trip investment.

Want even more carpooling details? Check out our Transportation FAQ.


Plan to book a flight arriving in the Bay Area no later than Thursday evening, and departing no earlier than 11pm Sunday night, or Monday morning.

Airbnb is a great choice for lodging in the Bay Area. Your exact departure point will depend on the other women on the trip - we always try to choose carpool meeting locations that are convenient for everyone - but the city of San Francisco is relatively small, and you can get most places in 15-20 minutes with a relatively inexpensive Lyft ride.



... love open, honest, hilarious conversations with other women. Surface stuff is fine at home, but you know the best stuff comes out around the campfire.

... haven't learned how to start the fire, work the stove, or purify water. Get hands-on practice here, with other adventurous women (so you don't have to trial-and-error on your own).

... thrive on being pushed - tenderly and lovingly - outside your comfort zone, because you know that's where the magic happens.

... learn by doing, and feel empowered when given the chance to make suggestions and decisions.

... feel creative, inspired, and happy when you're outside (and you could definitely use a little more of that right now).


... think getting a little sweaty, dirty, and marshmallow-y sounds gross.

... want everything—dishes, decisions, and dinner—to be done for you.

... don't want to experience the outdoors with a group of rad, like-minded women.

your Investment: $535 [$515 before August 11]

trip fee includes...

... all Yosemite National Park backcountry permit fees

... delicious meals from Friday evening through Sunday afternoon, trail snacks, chocolate, and wine & whiskey to sip in the moonlight

... guided, hands-on outdoor skills instruction and facilitation from a Wilderness First Responder-certified guide, plus access to the collective brilliance of your group

... all the gear you need, just in case you don't have any; just bring clothes and a toothbrush

... a donation back to Yosemite National Park, to preserve and protect it for future generations

Trip fee is exclusive of transportation costs to/from Yosemite and park entrance fees.

payment plans

We don't want finances to ever be the thing that gets in the way of you experiencing a Trail Mavens trip. With that in mind, we offer installment plans, so you can spread out trip payment over three months.

Sound appealing? Email us at and we'll get you set up.


Please review our cancellation policy before registering.

Additional questions? Just email, or register for one of our upcoming online info sessions with Sasha, Trail Mavens' founder.