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Inside LeConte
Climate Change
Huell Howser Video
Summer Programs
Green Shoes Project
Words for Wilderness
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Centennial Celebration
Rededication Ceremony
1904 Dedication
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A Week Volunteering in Yoemite by Elaine Gorman
A Volunteer's Experience by Keith Martin
Make an online donation
  Photo Albums:
The Beginning of a Friendship: John Muir and Joseph LeConte
Centennial Photo Album
Rededication Photo Album
General Photo Album
Including high-res photos
LeConte Memorial Lodge - First Permanent Visitor Center in Yosemite Valley & Home of the Sierra Club in Yosemite National Park (PDF) by Bonnie Gisel - from Yosemite Guide, May-June, 2012 (PDF)
LeConte Memorial - A Sierra Club Legacy by Elaine Gorman (PDF) (2012)
Memorial Fact Sheet (PDF)
Joseph LeConte Fact Sheet (PDF)
John Muir Fact Sheeet (PDF)
Huell Howser Video
(Quicktime Movie 48 MB )
Hetch Hetchy and the Sierra Club
Make a Nature Journal
About Joseph LeConte
'Little Joe' Joseph N. LeConte
1896 Tribute to Dr. LeConte
John Muir Exhibit
Sierra Club History
Oher Sierra Club Lodges
Le Conte Memorial Lodge by Steven Finacom
NPS 1985 Theme Study
National Historic Landmark Program

Sierra Club Environmental Education Program
LeConte Memorial Lodge

Please make a tax deductible donation to support the educational efforts of the LeConte Memorial Lodge:

Our 2015 season has ended.
For a list of our seasonal programs, see Summer Programs.

New! Interested in volunteering for the 2016 season?
There are some dates available and interested Sierra Club members should contact the Leconte Curator Bonnie Gisel at

Click here for more information about volunteering.


Huell Howser's California Gold television series visits LeConte Memorial Lodge!
View the video: Small | Medium | Large (Requires Quicktime)

LeConte Memorial Lodge Photo by Harold Wood


impressions from a visitor

"In a little Lodge in the woods, there dwells books and books of knowledge. In this Lodge built of stones, the knowledge is passed on. The knowledge in the Lodge is passed on and on and on. Saving the trees and water, the stones and sky and earth. And the knowledge in this Lodge helps more and more and more. This Lodge of knowledge and help is known and beloved as LeConte."
- Tania Berlinski, 2004

LeConte Lodge Centennial 1904-2004Public Service since 1904

The LeConte Memorial Lodge, a National Historic Landmark, was built by the Sierra Club in 1903-04. The unique structure was named for eminent University of California geologist Joseph LeConte, an early Director of the Sierra Club who died in the Valley in 1901. The Sierra Club provided the Valley's first public information center in 1898, first at a small cottage in the old Yosemite Village, and then beginning in 1904, at the LeConte Memorial Lodge. The Sierra Club has operated the rough hewn granite and wood Tudor-style as a public education center ever since, presenting and promoting the conservation ethic through public programs, educational displays and a library.

Styled a Lodge by its founders, in the traditional meanings of the term as a small house at the gates of a park, and as a meeting or gathering place (similar to the Elks Lodge or Masonic Lodge), this small stone building has never been used for overnight accommodations, but rather it is a public building which has always been used as a library and education center.

About 16,000 visitors per year enjoy this important historical structure due to the efforts of the Sierra Club. For over 110 years, a Curator and Sierra Club volunteers have served as summer caretakers providing information to National Park visitors about Yosemite, the Sierra Nevada, and the National Park Idea.

LeConte Library 2003 Photo by Harold WoodA library collection includes books on the natural and human history of Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada; books by and about Yosemite luminaries like John Muir, Ansel Adams, David Brower; children's nature literature, and Sierra Club books, magazine, and pamphlets.

Evening ProgramFree programs on natural history, outdoor adventure and conservation issues are presented several evenings each week at 8 P.M., and special day programs for children and families are scheduled throughout the summer, including sketching and poetry workshops, storytelling, and nature walks.

Visitors Welcome Sign
The LeConte Memorial is open from Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m... to 4 p.m. from May through September. Because the rough-hewn roof and granite walls have no insulation, the cold and snow of the winter keeps the building closed during the winter months. A goal for the future is to raise sufficient funding to open the Memorial seven days a week during the summer, and on the weekends in spring and fall.


We celebrated our Centennial in 2004.

Our focus for the future is on expanding and re-invigorating the ongoing purpose of LeConte Memorial Lodge to inform and engage visitors to Yosemite with the vision of caring about the world that was inspired by the Sierra Club's early leaders. Just as Joseph LeConte, John Muir, and other early Club leaders who are so closely associated with Yosemite believed, we celebrate the beauty of Yosemite while recognizing that the whole Earth deserves our stewardship. Two of our Centennial Celebration activities included our "Wilderness Quilt Project" and our ongoing Words for Wilderness program. Please joins us in our newest project - Walk in Green Shoes!


Would you like to assist as a volunteer in the LeConte Memorial Lodge Program? Benefits include free admission and camping in Yosemite National Park, and the opportunity to actively contribute to the Sierra Club's LeConte Memorial Lodge educational program. Volunteers assist in greeting visitors and working with them on the LeConte Lodge Centennial Wilderness Quilt Project, keeping the Lodge orderly and clean, and in assisting evening presenters. For more information, see our page about Volunteering.


Due to the almost "fairy tale" appearance of the Memorial, we are sometimes asked for permission to hold weddings in the building. Such requests cannot be honored, since the Memorial is actively operated as a visitor and education center with numerous activities every day. For information about weddings elsewhere in Yosemite, contact the National Park Service for a Wedding Permit.

LeConte Memorial Lodge is located at Bus Stop #12, across from the Housekeeping Camp, in Yosemite Valley.
Map to LeConte Memorial Lodge National Historic Landmark, Yosemite  Valley, Yosemite National ParkGPS Coordinates: N 37° 44.400 W 119° 34.76


For more information, during the summer contact Sierra Club LeConte Memorial Lodge Curator, P.O. Box 755, Yosemite, CA 95389, (209) 372-4542; e-mail:

During the winter, contact LeConte Lodge Committee Chair, Harold Wood, P.O. Box 3543, Visalia, CA 93278; phone: (559) 697-3525; e-mail: (e-mail preferred).

Please make a tax deductible donation to support the educational efforts of the LeConte Memorial Lodge:

  • Make an online donation using our secure web form; or
  • Write a check payable to "Sierra Club Foundation," marked "restricted for the LeConte Memorial Fund." Please send to: Sierra Club Foundation, 85 Second Street, Suite 750. San Francisco, CA 94105.


Words for Wilderness and LeConte Centennial emblems by George Pettit

Other photos by Harold Wood

Website maintained by Sierra Club volunteer Harold Wood

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