The Ladies of Yosemite: A National Park Adventure Just for Women

Discover the wonders of Yosemite and the wonders of learning with a troupe of Road Scholar women as you explore Yosemite Valley, Tuolumne Meadows, Half Dome and so much more.
Program No. 23916RJ
6 days
Starts at
Special Offer
Click on Dates & Prices below to see special offer details.

At a Glance

There’s no doubt that you’ve heard of Yosemite National Park and its stunning natural wonders. But do you know about the women who first overtook the park’s iconic peaks or roamed its vast forests as rangers? Join a small group of Road Scholar women (fascinating in their own right) and an expert naturalist and historian as she leads you through the park, sharing stories of women like Clare Marie Hodges, the first woman ranger in Yosemite, and Sally Dutcher, the first woman to climb Half Dome. From your home base at lodgings right inside the park, bond with new friends as you study the Yosemite women who pushed boundaries in the outdoors on an unforgettable, empowering, women’s-only adventure in Yosemite National Park.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to 1.5 miles over varied terrain including paved and dirt paths. Standing up to 45 minutes at a time. Elevations range from 4,000-8,000 feet.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Enjoy an exclusive evening discussion with author Lori Oliver Tierney and join her on a short hike as you hear her tales of struggle and perseverance on the John Muir Trail.
  • Explore Yosemite’s high country with a walk in the Tuolumne Meadows area, and experience the impressive granite formations of Half Dome and El Capitan.
  • Discover a special bond with your fellow Road Scholar women as you experience the distinctive flavor of a women’s-only adventure.
Featured Expert
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Frank Helling
Frank Helling is an active adventurer and naturalist who has spent much of his life “sauntering” in the footsteps of the great mountaineer, philosopher and nature writer John Muir. He has backpacked, hiked and climbed in the Sierras, Rockies, Cascades, Alps, Alaska, Hawaii and the deserts of the American Southwest. A former high school science teacher, Frank has also worked as a ranger and naturalist in Kings Canyon National Park and as a professional wilderness instructor.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Frank Helling
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Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
by Ansel Adams (Author), Andrea G. Stillman (Contributor), Michael L. Fischer (Contributor)
This beautifully printed paperback original collects Ansel Adams' finest images of the place closest to his heart, Yosemite National Park. It presents the essence of Adams' long association with Yosemite: sixty-six memorable photographs of glacial lakes and craggy peaks, cascading waterfalls and granite monoliths, lone trees and sylvan streams. Here are Moon and Half Dome, Clearing Winter Storm, and El Capitan, Winter, Sunrise - images that have become veritable icons of the American wilderness. It includes selections from Adams' writings about the park and its environment.
Geology of the Sierra Nevada (California Natural History Guides)
by Mary Hill
Geology of the Sierra Nevada (California Natural History Guides) is a comprehensive guide to the geologic history of the Sierra Nevada.
Sierra Nevada Natural History
by David Lukas, Tracy I. Storer, Robert L. Usinger
First published forty years ago, this handbook has become an enduring natural history classic, used by thousands to learn more about virtually every aspect of this spectacular mountain range--from its superb flora and fauna to its rugged topography. Comprehensive yet concise and portable, the book describes hundreds of species: trees and shrubs, flowering plants and ferns, fungi and lichens, insects and fish, amphibians and reptiles, and birds and mammals.
History of the Sierra Nevada
by Francis Peloubet Farquhar
The History of the Sierra Nevada covers all aspects of the human history of the area from the prehistoric native Americans, Spanish exploration, mountain men, pioneers, 49'ers, railroad, John Muir and the national parks to recent trends of utilization and recreation.
Yosemite: The Complete Guide
by James Kaiser
Filled with vivid color photography and informed writing, Yosemite: The Complete Guide puts the best of Yosemite National Park at your fingertips. Fully updated to include current travel info (including the new rules for hiking Half Dome), the second edition offers expanded chapters on geology, ecology, wildlife, and history. James Kaiser takes readers on a joyous romp through Yosemite, revealing the fascinating story behind the scenery. This handy book equips travelers with everything they need to know. Lodging, camping, and dining are covered in-depth, as well as outdoor adventures (hiking, biking, rock climbing, rafting, skiing), transportation issues, and seasonal weather patterns. Over 20 hikes are listed, with trail descriptions, topographical maps, and photos.
High Country Women: Pioneers of Yosemite National Park
by Chris Enss
Learn about the women who are a part of Yosemite National Park's history from Clare Hodges, the first female park ranger, to Maggie Howard, a Paiute women who taught many about her culture and traditions.
Trudge: A Midlife Crisis on the John Muir Trail
by Lori Oliver-Tierney
Follow the adventures of Lori Oliver-Tierney as she makes her way along the beautiful John Muir Trail. The trail wanders through 211 miles of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and is considered the most beautiful part of the longer Pacific Crest Trail. The trail starts in Yosemite and at Mt. Whitney. Lori challenges herself as she makes her way across several mountain passes and reconnects with herself in a wonderful natural setting.

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