Explore Birfday Hike - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Birfday Hike Map
VIEW FULL MAP

Awesome! Still had water at both Vernal and Nevada Falls. We took the entire route listed but didn’t take the “shortcuts” on the recorded map (short stairs to curb the corners on the switchbacks) and our route total walking from the Half Dome Campgrounds was over 10 miles! The stairs at Vernal Falls were tough but the stairs to the top of Nevada were tougher. Single ledge “more natural stairs” were definitely more unnerving than the Vernal Falls portion. Total flights of stairs recorded were 180! What a great way to spend a Sunday morning!

Great hike. I recommend starting around 8 to beat most of the crowds. We went on Nov 11 and it was COLD in the morning so bring layers. This hike is not challenging if you are in shape but there are a lot of stairs around the two falls which can make it difficult.

We went to see the sunrise at glacier point yesterday, and then decided that we would try a hike near by. We caught this trailhead from the Glacier point parking lot. This is a great hike with fantastic views of Half Dome. I especially liked the way the view of Half Dome Changes along the way.

You get a great view of. The Falls before dropping down to the river at the bridge. I imagine that in the springtime, there is much more water. I look forward to hiking it again when the water is flowing.

Good. Some parts were super easy, a few right before Nevada falls were steep and technical for the average person.

Great trail, hard work. Wife was absolutely spent after we got down - stairs prior to both falls, but especially Nevada were a killer. Great view all the way. Saw deer, Mumma Bear and 2 baby bears!

It was a wonderful hiking. The best part is after the California tunnel, where the crowds stop hiking. We saw many dears on the way back, around 6pm.

This hike was CAKE with an amazing view over the valley. Two water falls. Hit it early and make sure to go up vernal then Nevada and John Muir Trail on the return.

Best and most rewarding hike I've ever done. Train for this hike.... I'm 36 and in shape, and this kicked my a**. Last visit was OCT 2017. Been twice and plan on going back.

Fabulous hike- 3.5 hrs from Upper Pines campground with a lunch stop included. We did the walk up to the falls first and looped back on the John Muir Trail. It is a horse trail too but a more manageable grade downhill. A must hike in Yosemite.
Traffic is high to the first falls but gets less onto Nevada Falls. All the extra traffic would make this downhill harder.
Highly recommend.

hiking
7 days ago

Tough walk with a steep climb but definitely worth it. Went at the end of October and there was still water following from both falls. The trees along the trail were in the lovely autumn colours which made it look a lot more beautiful. Sadly John Muir trail was shut at the top so came back down via the mist trail until we could rejoin the John muir trail just before top of vernal falls until the bottom of vernal falls. There was toilets at top of Nevada falls and bottom of vernal falls but were shut for the season. Also remember it can be quite cold at the top but a quite a few degrees so pack extra layers.

Definitely a challenge that’s definitely worth it! Get your start early so you can take your time and enjoy all the sights. Snacks, water, and good shoes are a must. Did this Saturday, November 3rd, and the weather was great. Both falls still have water but it wasn’t as misty as I was expecting, I’m assuming from the time of the year. The leaves are changing so it’s very beautiful.

The waterfall was still beautiful. Many people but really good views :)

Lovely trail, couldn’t make it to Nevada Falls this trip though. We started too late in the afternoon. The stairs are rocky and uneven, so make sure you have solid hiking shoes or thicker soles. I’d recommend bringing water and snacks.

11-03. Do you think there is still water at Nevada and Vernal falls right now? Anyone who has recently been?

I normally do this trail first when I get to Yosemite. It’s typically pretty busy but it usually thins out the higher you go. The views are stellar! Don’t quit! Do the entire hike and get rewarded with a great experience. I highly recommend doing at some point before going off on a less congested trail.

Very easy to understand why it’s called ‘the most trail’. Solid, would hike again.

My opinion: The best trail to get the greatest impressions of the Yosemite NP.

We were there in June 2018. On the way to the Vernal Fall it was still very full. Many tourists were traveling there. In addition, it goes right at the beginning very steeply uphill. The paths are asphalted and easy to walk.

However, once you have left the lower part of the Vernal Fall, it is much emptier. Only a few make the climb to the upper part of the Vernal Fall. However, once you have reached the top, the basin of the Vernal Fall offers a great place to rest and swim. The view is wonderful!

After that we continued to climb towards the Nevada Fall. It can get very wet and make the steps slippery. Good shoes are mandatory.

Backwards you either go back the same way, or you use, like us, the John Muir Trail. This is a bit longer, but definitely better!

A part of the hike can be seen in this video from minute 2:53:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LMJ84EZDYJw

Great hike! I recommend going up the falls and down the Muir trail (if it’s not closed). Otherwise I recommend bringing a trekking pole because the rock steps can get slippery from the waterfalls and they’re steep anyways (which can be hard on the knees).

View from the top is beautiful and there’s a restroom (but not very clean). The hike is steep yet still doable for those with fear of heights.

I can’t emphasize enough to be prepared and bring water. They post signs, but I see so many people on this trail just wearing sneakers with no backpack or supplies whatsoever. It’s still the wilderness, and it’s important to always come prepared.

It was beautiful! Not very difficult, well worth seeing again.

One of the best ever!

Great hike. on 10/29 the return via the John Muir Trail was closed. My fitness tracker logged 141 flights of stairs going all the way to the top of Nevada Falls. Views Amazing.

hiking
14 days ago

The trail is well taken care of, as it is one of the most traveled. Get an early start because foot traffic will start around 9am and you won’t get to enjoy the quiet stillness of the trail as much. The waterfalls are gorgeous! The steps are a little rough to get through, but take a break midway, have a snack, take in the waterfall view and trek on!

Taking my friends up to Nevada Falls was a life changing experience. Although the trail takes a lot of perseverance it is worth it.

enjoyable trail

One of the most scenic trails I've ever done. Both waterfalls are beyond spectacular and it's a rewarding feeling to reach the top of Nevada Fall and look back down the canyon. It is, however, very popular and not at all an easy hike, so be prepared. I recommend taking the mist trail up and the john muir trail back down.

Such a fun hike! However, you must always remember in the hiking world, whatever goes down....must come back up! Definitely give yourself double time to crawl out of the trail. My husband and I began this hike around 2:00 pm. We made it down the trail in an hour. Sat at the creek and ate a snack and had some hiker coffee. (Starbucks packet of instant Carmel late....yum) We figured it would take us about 2.5 hours to get back to the car, and we surprised ourselves by doing it in only 2 hours (exactly). We ended the hike with a beautiful view of the sun setting over the mountain behind us giving the Panoramic view a nice pink haze covering. Simply beautiful!

Great hike and well worth the reward of making it to the top. Amazing view with all the tranquility you could ask for.

The majestic trees make this hike well worth the effort.

Finally finished renovations to accommodate the roots of the Sequoias. The area is easily accessible with a shuttle and has parking if you're driving yourself.

All new railing and it has so many branches to go off and view the many different named trees. Along the way you still get great views of all types of flora. If you go near sunset it is absolutely magical. Even managed to run into some deer on a less travelled path.

Trail is incredibly nice and easily accessible. Some small incline but nothing crazy.

Definitely the most scenic trail that I have done to date! It was full of waterfalls, boulders, bridges, valley views, lakes, and giant sequoia trees. On this magical trail you venture first to Vernon Falls and then end your journey at the top of Nevada falls. The ascent up the stairs can feel strenuous at times but just make sure to take short breaks here and there and soak in the waterfall views. Throughout the hike you get to admire in awe the impressive granite formations such as Liberty Cap, Mt. Broderick, and the back of Half Dome. I would recommend bringing around 3.5 L of water for this journey and it was about 8 miles total roundtrip.

- @justroc @just.trek

Load More