Explore a mountain vista during a beautiful sunset on our MountainGeist Sunset Moonlight Adventure! You will be guided on single track and unmotorized forest roads during late afternoon to a mountain vista where you will have time to relax and take in the spectacular sunset. This is a great time to also encounter wildlife so you never know what you might see! As the sun sets, the valley lights turn-on and stars pop in this amazing show of light!
You will return via headlamps under the night sky which provides a completely different and enchanting experience that is not to miss! We have several locations depending on the time of year from the gold country foothills overlooking expansive bodies of water to mid-elevation mountain vistas in the national forest. The total distance is an approximately three miles, out-and-back.
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Sunset Moonlight Hike
Hiking or Paddling
Gold Country Foothills & Stanislaus National Forest, High Sierra
Spring, Summer, Fall
Half Day: 3-4 hours
Easy to Moderate
From $75 PP
Expert Outdoor Guide
Natural, historic and cultural interpretation
Guide will carry all necessary navigational tools: map, compass, GPS
First Aid kit carried by guide trained in wilderness first aid
Water at trailhead (bottle/s)
Water filtration while on trail
Light trail snacks – may contain nuts
USFS permits and guiding fees (does not include park entrance fees)
WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED
Transportation to/from trailhead (we will caravan from a central meeting location)
Personal Park Entry Fees (where appropriate and driving separately)
Please call for equipment rental options for specialized gear (bikes, boats, paddleboards, etc.)
WHAT TO BRING
Light day pack
Comfortable hiking shoes with grippy soles
Comfortable outdoor clothing – synthetic, non-cotton is recommended
Additional top insulating layer of clothing (e.g microfleece or ‘puffy’)
Wind/Water resistant jacket (top shell)
WHAT TO BRING
Sunscreen, hat and sunglasses
Small trail binoculars
Warm hat for night
Personal water bottle or hydration pack: 1-liter minimum recommended
Additional trail snacks (especially those with dietary restrictions or allergies)
Headlamp or small flashlight (we'll provide one if you don't have one)
Wind/Water resistant pant shell (weather dependent)
Nitty Gritty Details
Scheduled Days of Experience
Sunset Moonlight Hikes are offered throughout the year. Please consult the website or call for the date of our next adventure! Private experiences may be booked during the week days with prior arrangement.
Meeting Time and Place
Sunset Hikes generally meet late afternoon and the time and location will depend on the season and time of sunset. Upon booking, you will be provided an exact time and meeting location which will can be tailored up or down the highway 4 corridor to accommodate our guests.
All transport to and from the trailhead will be in your personal vehicle. The group will caravan together from the meeting location to the trailhead.
Challenge, Terrain and Duration
The challenge level of this experience is from Easy to Moderate, but overall, this is a relaxed experience to enjoy the light and enchantment of the forest at night. Your guide will lead you on well-established trails which can be uneven at times. The average distance is an approximate three (3) mile round-trip, out-and-back and we will spend an extended time at the vista taking in the spectacular changing of the lights from sunset to the starry night! The elevation of the trailheads vary from 1,300 feet to 4,000 feet with 400 feet or less of elevation gain.
Less Traveled – while these areas are “local favorites” during the day, you will mainly have the trail and vistas to yourself for an enchanting evening full of light!
You may expect anywhere from two to ten other ‘adventurers’ on your shared experience. Private experiences are available.
Generally, we encourage each participant to consider their ability in meeting the “challenge” level outlined in each experience rather than adhering to strict age limits. While we recommend a minimum age of 12 on this experience, we would consider younger ages with relevant hiking experience and who are comfortable in the nocturnal forest under headlamp.
Shortly before the scheduled day of the experience, a trip packet will be sent to the contact email who booked the experience. You will be provided trip details, trailhead information, weather forecast update, and reminders on what to pack and what to expect. You will also receive a liability waiver and a few other items to fill out prior to the day of the experience which will be returned via email or delivered in person to the guide at the meeting location.
As with parking in any remote location, we encourage you to leave any valuables at home and lock anything remaining of value in your trunk or out of site. Due to wildlife considerations, we discourage leaving food or scented items in your vehicle. There are generally no bear boxes at the trailheads where we will be parking, so leave what you don’t need on the hike at your home, hotel or rental.
Park Entry Fees
Some experiences may take place within parks or recreational areas that require a personal entry fee. When traveling in your separate personal vehicle following the guide, you will be responsible for any park entry fees where appropriate. Most trailheads in the Stanislaus National Forest do not require an entry fee or collect parking fees during non-winter seasons.
Need recommendations for lodging before or after your experience? Don’t hesitate to call us and we can help provide information.
This experience is open to the public and single participants will join a larger group.
Pricing per person (PP) based on number of people in booking party (not total group size).
Discounts provided to parties booking with 2 or more people.
“Solo” pricing option available on experiences that do not book multiple participants (it does not refer to a private experience).
Non-refundable deposit required upon booking. $25 per person for open trips or 20% of the total price for private trips.
Private group experience upgrade fee of $200 per group.
Call for details about private groups, corporate events and custom experiences
Refunds offered up to 48-hours in advance of all day or half-day trips (7-days in advance of all multi-day trips) less the non-refundable deposit unless cancelled by MountainGeist in which a full refund or credit will be offered.
Single-participant, non-private experiences (public experiences that only book a single participant), will have the option to either upgrade to a “solo” price experience or cancel 48-hours in advance with a full refund. The “solo” option may be designated at time of booking as well.
Pricing Based on Half-Day
$95 / PP
$85 / PP
$75 / PP
TRIPS OFFERED: Moonlight HIkes
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