Paddle Tenaya Lake in Yosemite

Paddle across glistening Tenaya Lake off Tioga Road. Its azure waters are surrounded by lofty granite peaks, evergreen conifer trees, and rock outcroppings.
By Staff,
Polly Dome (left) and Medlicott Dome (center) bordering Tenaya Lake in Yosemite.

Although many visitors don't know it, you can paddle across glistening Tenaya Lake in the Sierra Nevada high country, off Tioga Road. Its azure waters surrounded by lofty granite peaks and evergreen conifer trees provide all the photogenic beauty for free.

Kayaks are recommended for this trip, although the National Park Service (NPS) allows any non-motorized boats on the lake. As elsewhere around the park, be careful not to cut through grassy meadows (walk around them instead) and avoid trampling fragile riparian areas near the lakeshore.

Always launch watercraft from sandy beaches or gravel bars, to protect the natural habitat.