Custom designed wilderness backpack trips for all levels of skills and abilities
YGS offers custom arranged day hikes to the most interesting and unique locations
Our sightseeing tours are private and unique, provided only for the guests reserving the trip.
These trips offer first class style with luxurious tent accommodations and gourmet meals for both hiking and sightseeing outings.
Inspiration at all levels
Yosemite Guide Service specializes in private, customized backpack trips, day hikes, luxury camping trips, and eco-tours in Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada wilderness. Our guided trips focus on the unique natural environment of the Sierra Nevada, blending the historical and cultural aspects of Yosemite to provide exceptional outings.
- Individual and small group outings to the most extraordinary destinations.
- Carefully planned outings to meet your personal needs and desires.
- Professionally trained, highly experienced, and friendly naturalist-guides.
- Superior knowledge gained from many years of local experience.
Our goal is to enhance your understanding and appreciation of the natural environment that is unique to Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada, creating an experience that is inspirational for each of our guests.
John is a fabulous tour guide who knows every spot and trail to see for beauty and great pictures. He is a retired natural resource biologist who knows the Sierra mountains like no one else. He explains the ecosystem from geology, plant and tree life, animals and history. Super knowledgeable, friendly, on time, very responsible and a pleasure to be with. His wife is a wildlife artist who is also a great masseuse... great to get a massage after the hiking.
You can’t find a better guide! Don’t go there without him!
My wife, two young children, and I spent four amazing days backpacking in the High Sierras with John and his dog Parker. The trip really got us into unbelievably beautiful yet remote areas that only an experienced guide would know about. John provided a wonderful experience including great equipment, food, routes that were perfectly suited to us, informative narration on flora and fauna, and stunning views and campsites. This was a great introduction to backpacking for us and we hope to return for more backpacking in the years to come.
- Karl Z
Had an amazing trip with John and Kirsten guiding us through the Ansel Adam's Wilderness area. This is the second trip that my friends and I have used John and his guide service. Our hike was set to leave just a few days after the Ferguson fires began. John had prepped us months in advance for this hike, and kept us all up to speed as the fire progressed. Luckily we were able to stick with our Plan A, which was totally amazing.
I will be hiking in the Yosemite area in the future and look forward to using John as our guide again. I highly recommend!!
~ Laurah B
As a regular hiker in the English Lake District, my two long days with John really exceeded expectations. His detailed knowledge of the geology, wild flowers, wild life, culture and local history added immensely to the enjoyment of my time in Yosemite. It was like hiking with your best friend. The Panorama Trail & Mist Trail on the first day followed by the ascent of the Mono Pass in the High Sierras on the second could be too energetic for some at that altitude. John tailored the trip to suit me and got it spot on. For me the best days of the holiday.
~ Felltop, Ambleside, United Kingdom
We hired John to guide our family of four for a day during our first visit to Yosemite. It was the best money we spent on this trip. John was very professional from our first contact with him; ahead of our visit he emailed lots of information as to what we would need, asked lots of questions so he could customize his tour for us, and was very responsive. He was very enjoyable to be around for the day, was fantastic with our kids (11 and 13), and was flexible all day. Our tour was really interesting, not 'canned', and was a great mix of nature info combined with the history of the valley. His van was nice, new, clean, and comfortable--we could just relax and enjoy the ride. Would give this experience 6 stars if I could. We are already planning a trip back to hire John for a back country camping excursion.
~ Dan E, Fort Myers, United States
John does everything right -- top-quality location, top-quality gear, and a top-quality experience. He took my husband and I on a two-day private camping trip that was customized to our needs. (I also understand he also does same-day trips but we didn't do that.) We saw unique places that the guidebooks just don't show you. Way off the beaten path. The trip was beautiful, fun and energizing. John tailored the trip to our needs, adjusting on the fly to our mood of the day. John is super knowledgeable and just an all-around good guy. If you are looking for a private camping trip in the Yosemite area that adjusts to fit your needs, this is the one to take.
~ Doralys B, Malibu, California
John provided our group of 11 people (4 adults and 7 kids ages 7 -16) with a wonderful tour of Yosemite. He knew the best places to park to navigate in and out of the park on the busiest holiday of the year...July 4th! He even suggested a picturesque lunch overlooking El Capitan. As we were eating lunch, we were able to see several brave rock climbers scale these granite rocks through his telescope. He provided us with his knowledge of the history of the park and showed us many of its hidden gems! Book with John and Yosemite Guide Service, you won't be disappointed!
~ ccvisconti, Freehold, New Jersey
I can't say enough good things about John and Yosemite Guide Service. We went out on a 3 day / 2 night backpacking adventure and it was exactly the trip we were looking for. The area he took us to was absolutely beautiful, it was like hiking through a postcard. He was very knowledgeable, friendly and accommodating to our group, which included a 10 year old and we moved at a pace that was comfortable for her throughout the hike. He supplied all of the equipment and food. He even went over food options with us to make sure the kiddo would be happy. If anybody is thinking about hiking in that area I strongly recommend using Yosemite Guide Service!
~ Mel-D-PA83, Perkasie, Pennsylvania
We spent 5 nights and 6 days hiking from Tuolumne Meadows to Yosemite Valley with our awesome guide, John. There is no way we could have done this without him, being that there were no trails for the first two days. He taught us so much about the park, about being efficient backcountry campers, and even taught my son how to fly fish! Having taken several guided trips with our family in the past, John ranks at the top of all of them.
~ Thea F, Greensboro, North Carolina