Mount Hoffman Trail is a 5.6 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Yosemite National Park, CA that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and birding and is accessible from March until November.
Easy access, spectacular views from the center of Yosemite. Centrally located at an elevation of 10,850' Yosemite's Mount Hoffman provides one of the best overall views of the park. The short hiking distance make this a popular hike. The trail to May Lake is a short and pleasant climb. From May Lake the official trail disappears and becomes somewhat steeper and there are several use trails to the summit. Route finding isn't difficult, but there is a section of loose rock to deal with. The only drawback of the summit experience is that you will have to share it with a tower that was erected years back, but the views make sharing worthwhile!
I hiked this today with my husband and 14 yr old son. Once you are in the parking lot, start to the left of entrance, close to the bathrooms. Getting to May Lake took maybe 25 min for us, it was very beautiful and very quiet. Ascending up Mount Hoffman was easy to moderate until you get up to maybe 1000 ft, where there's loose rock and you have to pay close attention to footpath. You'll see cairns, which is the first time I've ever been able to appreciate these, due to no trail markers. The last section, to me, was more difficult than moderate, but worth it.. a lot of big rocks to climb in and out of the path. Perhaps if didn't have a fear of falling, it wouldn't have seemed so difficult. The summit is not for the faint of heart., but the 360 views are to die for! My son got halfway up that final section to the tower/summit and stopped there upon my request. Even there, you have really gorgeous views of the lower valley below. From the parking lot to summit and back, with a few breaks, it took us 5 hours and 30 minutes.
Mt. Hoffman is a great hike and scramble! The hike to May Lake itself is easy but after that is a wee bit of rock scrambling to the top. There were a few parts where I was apprehensive but that was due to my personal fear of falling. I went in May on the opening day of Tioga Pass and I ran into no one, but during the peak of summer I'd imagine the crowds along the trail to be fairly moderate since it's fairly short.
This hike provides astounding beauty, including the most amazing views of Yosemite. You'll have to scramble up the granite at the very end if you want to reach the summit, but it's worth it.