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What to wear in Yosemite in Summer

What to wear in Yosemite in Summer

Want to know what to wear in Yosemite in Summer? This guide tells you EXACTLY what to pack for Yosemite in June, July, August or Septembe from hiking clothes, best shoes to wear and all the other Yosemite essentials.

Summer is a great time to visit Yosemite as the weather is near perfect, especially for hiking. However the crowds tend to be at their highest during the summer months. But one thing you won’t have to worry about is what to pack. In this guide we will tell you:

But with this packing list the one thing you won’t have to worry about is what to wear in Joshua Tree. In this guide we will tell you

  • What the weather is like in Yosemite in Summer
  • What to wear in Yosemite in summer for hiking, driving and more and
  • other travel essentials to pack for Yosemite in summer

Note: this packing list is not intended as a camping packing list, but instead for those in lodges and hotels who spend their days in the park. If you plan to camp in the national park check out this post.

Weather in Yosemite National Park in Summer

Couple in Yosemite with trees and mountains in the background
What to wear in Yosemite in Summer (June, July, August or September)

But before we get into what to wear and travel essentials for Yosemite National Park in summer, it is important to know what the weather is going to be like.

July and August are the hottest months to visit Yosemite with temperatures averaging around 33/34 °C or 91/93 °F. But out in the open it can feel even hotter than that especially in Yosemite Valley. Therefore it is important to pack lots of natural fabrics such as cottons and linens on your packing list.

What to wear in Yosemite in Summer

Two people stood by water with mountains in the background in Yosemite in summer
What to wear in Yosemite in Summer

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So now you know about the weather, we will tell you what to wear in Yosemite in Summer. Traditionally when we create packing lists we normally separate them our by gender to allow for dress codes.

Normally when we put together our packing list guides we split them into men, women and children. However for Yosemite our packing list is universal. That is because practicality is key to any national park packing list. Therefore we recommend all visitors to Yosemite in the Summer pack:


Although the temperatures in Yosemite in Summer are high, we still recommend adding some layers onto your packing list. We always recommend getting early starts in national parks in summer and Yosemite is no different.

We think the best top layer for Yosemite in summer is a microfiber lightweight fleece. It is warm and insulating but will also pack away easily into your day pack when you aren’t using it.

T Shirts

T shirts are my favorite base layer for Yosemite no matter whether you are visiting in June, July, August or September. As the weather is hot short sleeve are helpful for keeping you cool however long sleeve tees made of natural fabrics such as cotton and bamboo are a great cool pick that can also help protect your skin from the sun.

Convertible Walking Trousers

Any trip to Yosemite involves walking, hiking and outdoor time so no matter whether you are just exploring the Yosemite Valley or hiking to higher altitudes we recommend packing convertible walking trousers.

This way you can wear them as trousers in the mornings and change them into shorts for layer in the day.


The sun can be strong in Yosemite so we recommend having a hat with a wide brim or a baseball cap to protect your eyes.

Rain Jacket

Although there are not many rainy days in Yosemite, they are usually downpours when the come. For this reason we recommend packing a rain jacket in your day pack especially if you plan on doing longer hikes such as the popular Mist Trail to Half Dome and for when you are close to waterfalls such as Vernal Falls.

Hiking Socks

If you plan on wearing hiking boots in the park then you will also need hiking socks. If you just plan on wearking sneakers then sneaker socks may be more appropriate.

Best Shoes to wear to Yosemite

So now you know what to wear, we turn our attention to footwear.

Hiking Shoes

No matter the national park I am traveling to I always take hiking boots with me. Now if you plan on doing little hiking and sticking to Yosemite Valley and more maintained walkways these might not be necessary. However I like to have them with me whenever I visit a national park so I can do whatever trails I like.


Sneakers are the best comfortable walking shoes for any vacation. Sneakers are great for maintained boardwalks and walkways as well as in the Valley.

Hiking Sandals

In hotter weather hiking sandals are a good pick for Yosemite National Park.

What to pack for Yosemite – travel essentials

Man with back to the camera wearing orange backpack looking at waterfall in Yosemite in summer
What to pack for Yosemite in Summer

Day pack with rain cover

Any day we spend in a national park we take and pack a day pack. My favorite backpack brand is Columbia but this is a purely personal choice.

Power Bank

Days are long in Yosemite and reception is sporadic at best. For this reason we recommend having a fully charged power bank with you to recharge your phone during the day.

Sun protection

The sun is strong in Yosemite so be sure to have lots of sun protection with a high SPF with you.

Bug Spray / Insect Repellant

The mosquitos are pretty fierce in Yosemite in summer so be sure to pack plenty of bug spray and insect repellant.


Again the sun is strong so sunglasses are an essential.


Although Yosemite isn’t as renowned for its wildlife as say Yellowstone, the wildlife is still impressive. In fact there are almost 100 different types of mammals in the park. So if you want to see the wildlife that the park has on offer we recommend traveling with a pair of binoculars.

Reusable Water Bottle and Extra Water

We recommend always having a reuable water bottle and extra water with you for any naitonal park visit especially in Summer.

Coffee Thermos and Mug

Your days start early in Yosemite and for me therefore a coffee thermos and mug is absolutely a must pack so I can be caffeinated at the start of the day.


Although there are food vendors in Yosemite, the places to stop and grab snacks are few and far between so be sure to pack ample snacks, food and drinks.

Cooler and food containers

As the temperatures are hot and you will be taking food into the park so you will want a cooler and food containers with you.

First Aid Kit

Although no one wants to use a first aid kit on vacation, it is a good idea to pack a first aid kit with you on any national park vacation just in case especially if you plan on going on more remote hikes..


Whether this is a downloaded map on your phone or a physical one it is worth having a map with you that shows the trailheads you plan on taking.


A camera is a necessity for any visitor to Joshua Tree.

Toilet Paper, Hand Sanitizer and a She wee

The toilets in Yosemite outside of the main Yosemite Vallery area are pretty primitive. For this reason we recommend packing toilet paper, hand sanitizer and a she wee with you.

What not to pack for Yosemite National Park

So now you know what to pack for Joshua Tree, we will turn our attention to what not to pack.


Drones are classified as unmanned aircrafts and are as such prohibited from being flown in the park boundaries.

Complete Yosemite Packing Checklist for Summer

  • Layers
  • T Shirts
  • Walking Trousers
  • Rain Jacket
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Hiking Boots
  • Shoes – either sneakers or hiking sandals
  • Backpack and rain cover
  • camera
  • binoculars
  • map
  • sun protection
  • insect repellant
  • quick dry towel
  • coffee thermos and mug
  • resuable water bottle
  • food
  • first aid kit

Further National Park Reading