5 NIGHTS | 45 MILES | kings canyon np
MAY, JUNE, SEPT, OCT
Starts near Fresno/Clovis, CA
Immerse yourself in the wonder of Tehipite Valley, the most powerful, majestic and remote glacial valley of the Sierra.
If Yosemite Valley is for tourists, Tehipite Valley is for true adventurers. Immerse yourself in a valley of mythical proportions on a 5-night, 6-day backpacking trek that will take you into the most majestic, powerful and remote valley in the Sierra. You’ve heard of Half Dome? Discover Tehipite Dome, the largest dome in the Sierra, with a sheer 3,500′ rise from the valley floor, and venture onto its ledges. Enjoy a layover day camped along the wildly exuberant Middle Fork of the Kings River with time to explore cascading waterfalls, swimming holes and native petroglyphs in the serene wonder of a valley filled with solitude. This 45-mile Y-shaped trek includes two base camps, roughly 4 miles of off-trail trekking, and a 3,500′ descent in just over 2 miles. Reaching Tehipite is not for the undetermined! Our route is rugged, overgrown, full of down trees and at times barely discernable. Yet all who have ventured into the Tehipite Valley would agree that the view from it’s rim and sense of wonder from it’s floor are worth every step.
- Guided 5 night, 45 mile trek to Tehipite Dome and Tehipite Valley
- Transportation between Fresno/Clovis area meeting points and trailhead
- All meals and snacks while in the back-country
- Backpack, tent, sleeping bag and pad if needed
- Personalized pack-check prior to departure
- Group gear and equipment
- Post-hike shower
- Flexible cancellation policy
What’s not included
- Lodging in the front-country
- Meals in the front-country
How it works
A $500 deposit per person is required with balance due 60 days prior to the event. Typical group size of 7, including one guide. Maximum group size of 12, including two guides. An additional 5% charge will be applied when your reservation is made to offset new fees mandated by the U.S. Forest Service. Private, family and modified itinerary trips available through TSX Pods. Book with confidence! Review our flexible cancellation policy.
Waterfall Photo credit: Leon Turnbull http://www.waterfallswest.com
Day 1 – Late morning arrival, pack-check, overnight on trail
We’ll meet up in the Fresno/Clovis area between 8am and 9am on the day of departure and then begin the journey to our near Wishon Reservoir (about a 2.5 hour drive from the Fresno/Clovis area). Guests who are driving in may optionally meet us at our Shaver Lake Cabin at 10AM. Our goal is to make it to the trailhead by lunch where we’ll do a final pack-check, get to know our team and talk safety before beginning an afternoon hike to camp on the trail.
The afternoon hike is a rolling 7-mile hike with moderate elevation gain/loss on good trail. We will wind through forests dotted with High Sierra meadows and small stream crossings. At the end of the day we will set up the first of two basecamps on a ridge with views of Tehipite and Kettle Domes.
Day 2 – Crown Valley camp to Tehipite Dome and back
Trail: 8 miles on rough trail with moderate incline and 4 mile off trail
After breakfast, our team will set out on an out-and-back day hike to the ledges of Tehipite Dome. The first 4 miles will be on primitive trail winding through woods, meadows and river crossings. We’ll leave the trail behind and begin off-trail on a 2 mile trek along steep slopes with short scrambles until our route gives way to stomach tingling views as we approach the ledges of Tehipite Dome. After enjoying the view and a well-deserved lunch we will hike back the way we came to basecamp and prepare for the next day.
Day 3 – Crown Valley camp to Tehipite Valley
Trail: 9 Miles over rough trail with 3,500′ descent into Tehipite Valley
We will pack up our basecamp and hike down into Tehipite Valley. The first 7 miles of the hike will be over moderate to rough trail until we come to “The Point of No Return” which marks the beginning of the descent into Tehipite Valley. With stunning views we will begin our 2.5 mile descent, dropping 3,500 ft. into the valley. At the bottom of the switchbacks it is a short mile hike along the Middle Fork of the Kings River and camp.
Day 4 – Tehipite Valley layover day
This is your day to choose your own adventure and explore the many wonders of the Tehipite Valley. Hike up the valley and find “Painted Rock” which is covered in petroglyphs. Take a side trip up to Silver Spray Falls or search for the infinite pools in the Gorge of Despair. If you like to fish, spend the day angling up and down the Middle Fork of the Kings River. Or rest and reflect by the river in serenity.
Day 5 – Tehipite Valley to Meadow Camp
Trail: 8 Miles with intense uphill over moderate trail
What goes down must come up. We will set out early to get a jump on our long climb back up the 70 switchbacks. After a well-earned break at the top we will have an easy hike back to Rocky Creek meadow where we will camp for the night.
Day 6 – Meadow Camp to Wishon Reservoir
Trail: Easy to Moderate 5-mile hike along a rolling maintained trail
We will hike back the way we came along the same trail as Day 1. With an early start we will be back at the van before lunch where we will reload cars, and return to the town of Shaver Lake to share a hearty group meal. A final stop for showers at our cabin in Shaver Lake is optional, then it’s home to brag.
Departure and pickup locations
On the day of departure, TSX will coordinate transportation from Central California (Fresno/Clovis area) and our Shaver Lake Cabin.
- Central California Pick-up Point: Clovis Cole Best Western, Clovis, CA – 8am – 9am
- Shaver Lake Cabin (address to be provided) – 10am
The specific departure time will be confirmed on a trek by trek basis. The Fresno/Clovis area is a 3 hour car drive from the Bay Area, and roughly 4 hours from Southern California. Meals are not provided when in transit, however, we will stop for food and to refuel before reaching the trailhead. Our goal is to make it to the trailhead around lunch time. Dinner will be provided that evening on the trailhead.
Pre- and post-trek accommodations (Out of State Guests)
For guest traveling in from out of state, we suggest flying into Fresno, CA the evening before departure and staying at the Best Western Clovis Cole, in historic downtown Clovis or Hampton Inn and Suites Clovis. Both are about a 10 minute cab/Uber ride from the airport. We can pick you up at the hotel on the morning of departure. If you plan on staying somewhere else, please let us know where you end up, and we’ll do our best to accommodate.
At the trailhead
Bring your personal items and a positive attitude! All group gear and food will be provided on the trail. Any major personal gear you’ve indicated you’d like us to provide (sleeping bag, tents etc.) will be waiting for you at the trailhead. Please also bring a small bag with a clean set of clothes. Before we hit the trail, we’ll leave that bag at the cabin for optional showers after we exit.
We plan on exiting the trail between 10am and 12pm on the last day of the trek. Please plan your return transportation accordingly. If flying out of Fresno on the same day, we suggest scheduling flights for departure no earlier than 4pm. Staying one additional night in the Clovis, Fresno or Shaver Lake area is also popular option. Expect to arrive back in Clovis by 3pm.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
Don’t own a backpack, tent or sleeping bag? We provide all major gear for those who request it at no additional charge. We also take care of all group items like stoves, food, water filters, first aid and more. Your guides will do the cooking and dishes. Just show up with your personal items ready to hike!
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