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Start early in the morning (by 8am) to avoid crowds. We were there in mid-September and was not too crowded at that time, but was busy at the bottom when we were finishing up. Hard hike with a lot of vertical climb, but worth it for the views. Take the easier John Muir trail down for some added length and also for the views looking back at the falls you just climbed. Beautiful hike!

Not really sure why I am writing this review since I've done this hike several times, but here we go, this hike is only as hard as you make it seem, crossing some water and getting wet ads up to how hard it could get, you don't need to get wet in order to cross the water, just be creative and you'll be fine, also, the later you go in the day, the harder it gets due to the sun hitting you directly at the stretch of the hike before getting to the bridge itself, so the earlier you start the better since there is some shade, on your way back it feels sort of like a different hike, which is nice, there is no way of getting lost, follow the stream and you'll be fine.

Good hiking shoes and always recommend since this a rocky hike, several parts of this trail has lots of rocks, the more you hitting for obvious reasons, you will eventually start to feel it and get tired (see where I'm getting with the it's only as hard as you make it seem), bring plenty of water, sunscreen and sun glasses.

It's a fun hike, you feel pretty good once you get to the bridge which you can dip in the water down below. just be careful while getting down there as its rocky and steep, and you will also feel really good on your way back.

My recent group I went with, we started at 7 am and we were done by 12ish, easy 10-11 mile hike, give it a try.

Great hike even if it’s dried up. Did it with my son on our father son getaway. We left at 7:15 and glad we did. It does get hot towards the top but there are a couple great water holes on top to get in. Slippery when coming down wear the right boots. Believe it or not we saw someone doing it bare foot. 3-4 bottles of water are good. We saw a mountain lion and bear so watch for them. It’s a GREAT hike. Enjoy

Great views and good place to take a splash

This is one of the most beautiful and epic hikes that I have ever completed. My daughter and I completed this hike on June 19, 2018. The waterfall was gorgeous and still flowing this time of year. This hike is definitely a challenge but is totally worth it. We didn’t have trekking poles and that was a mistake. Poles will definitely make the descent a little easier on the feet and knees. My Fitbit showed the round trip mileage for this trail at 12 miles.

on Crafts Peak Trail

2 days ago

The access to this trail is either through a campground, which you have to park outside of and walk through to get to the trailhead; or, you can take a left less than a quarter mile before the campground on forest road 2N13 [a 4x4 vehicle is strongly recommended for this road]. The trail head is the beginning of road 2N13D, and there is ample parking to the right [not paved].
The trail itself is quite easy for the first 4 miles, as it is basically a regular gravel road. The trail/road is fully drivable for most 4x4s until the last mile, in case you want to shorten your on foot trek.
It is possible to drive even the last mile if you have a serious off-road capable vehicle; if you’re not alone and very experienced, you can do this last mile with a X-Terra, TRD, or a Cherokee Trailhawk or better, emphasis on better.
Back to hiking; the last mile has two steep parts, but still not technical. The trail only gets technical on the last hundred feet or so.
I really like this trail for its flexibility and for being very dog friendly.

beautiful hike

Nice hike. Steep elevations though. Only saw two small groups of hikers the whole trip.

Absolutely my favorite day hike ever!!!! The stairs to Vernal Falls were intense. Although still a challenge the hike to Nevada Falls was a bit strenuous. The view at the top was breathtaking. We were also able to see some climbers on Half Dome. Heading down via the John Muir Trail was a great choice, peaceful. This is a must do hike!

this was the best hike we've been on yet plenty of water plenty of pools deep enough to get in lots of solitude and hardly any people and plenty of shade too

Very fun, but crowded hike. Go early to ensure fewer crowds. Gets pretty uphill towards the end

hiking
6 days ago

Strenuous- best done from the Valley to Glacier Point. Get up early in the morning - switchbacks are difficult, but we are happy we did not do the first half of the climb in the sun! We started at 9am. Bring plenty of water and food. We saw many people not prepared with the right amount of water or shoes.
It took us 3 hours with 2-3 breaks in between to get to the top. About 2-2.5 hours to get down.
Spectacular views at Glacier point and well-worth the hike!

Now my 2nd favorite hike in the nation. Sorry, it will be hard to beat the continental divide trail in northern Glacier NP. Due to the drought there were no falls flowing in the valley that we say. Vernal, Illouette and Nevada are flowing however. So let's get to the list.

Total of 7.4 miles in 5.5 hours. Tough trail is you are not in shape due to the elevation change in the short distance

1. Arrive early. We arrived at 7am at the public parking lot and it was already over 3/4 full.
2. The public parking is almost 1/2 mile to the trailhead
3. There is free shuttle service from all visitor centers so if the parking is full, just back up to another parking area, grab a shuttle and be dropped off at the trail head
4. the first mile is all asphalt and steep 10% +/- grade. Once you past the first bridge crossing the trail becomes more dirt and rock. However, the trail at one time was asphalt all the way up to Nevada Falls, That residual asphalt is smooth and slippery from sand so be sure your hiking shoes have good soles
5. Stairs to Vernal Falls. Who made those things/ The last 1/2 mile is practically all stairs and most are 12-18" high.
6.Vernal Falls is flowing. The pool above the falls is absolutely gorgeous but you cannot swim in it or slid a slick rock slide into it.
7. From Vernal to Nevada is mostly a rock path that has been laid down. I would not call it stairs but does have steps. Much easier
8. Nevada Falls is flowing as well.
9. You can swim the pool at the top of Nevada Falls.
10. We came down the John Muir Trail which involves nothing more than crossing the bridge above the falls and following the signs to the valley floor. It added about 1/2 mile but the trail was much easier, in the SHADE. but spots of old asphalt were slippery from sand
11. 2 separate bear encounters on the John Muir at less than 10 yards each. They were on the side of the trail eating acorns and could care less we were just yards from them.
12. Despite being the 2nd week of Sept, it was very busy coming down. People waited until late morning and it was a solid ant line of people coming up. However, most were visitors from other countries.

Enjoy

AMAZING views the entire way up and down. It is strenuous for sure but so worth it. Switchbacks almost all the way up.

Epic views
Dried up falls in September
Slippery rocks so wear good hiking shoes/boots
Hiking/trekking pole highly recommended
No bathrooms
From camp 4 to overlook FitBit clocked in 6 miles (12 miles round trip)
Use bug spray!
This hike will make you the stairMASTER!
Worth every step.

hiking
9 days ago

As others said, bring lots of water. I carried 3 liters and ran out. Trail is hard to find on the way up - stay to the east side of river. Wore trail runners on the way up and was fine but recommend hiking boots if you have ankle issues. You’ll want stability since there is a lot of rock and loose sand. Wore my chacos on the way back since it was 90+ degrees and the water felt good on my feet. Be prepared to get wet at least to ankles (yes, even in summer when it hasn’t rained in 4 months.)

Some spots have lots of beautiful cool shade and other spots are barren desert with intense heat. Don’t go when it’s too hot or chance of rain.

Don’t forget your adventure pass. Also, DO NOT LEAVE anything in your car. The parking lot was full of glass from several smashed windows. Such a shame.

Not recommended to bring a dog without boots on a hot day. Though there is shade and water, a lot of trail is exposed and hot.
Definity continue passed the bridge, there is a larger river section that people were splashing around in. Wish I’d arrived sooner and could have bungeed, maybe next time.
Parking was limited and the sides of the road where paralleling are tight. We should have got there earlier, think we arrived around 930.

gorgeous hike. majority of the time it feels like you are climbing the stairs to Mordor. nice views of Nevada falls after Vernon falls on the way up. The view of half dome is great on the way down the John Muir trail. you can see liberty cap, half dome, and Nevada falls at the same time. walking 1 mile past nevada falls to towards half dome is relatively flat and has a nice view of half dome, backside of liberty cap, and follows the river and is a good way to add some distance/time to the hike.

in September the hike started at 47 degrees at 8am and it was 96 when we left the valley floor at 1:30. highly recommend doing it early as the trail was less populated in the fall on a Friday.

hiking
11 days ago

got on the trail around 830am and there were only a few other groups on the way up, plus a couple on their way down, so it was nice and quiet, and well shaded. there aren't any particularly steep sections, just lots of switchbacks which was surprisingly enjoyable. the view from the top is awesome but lots of people, and on the way back down it was fairly busy. couldn't get a good look at yosemite falls but vernal and nevada falls can be seen from the top.

12 days ago

This trail is amazing. It offers the best views of The Valley for a day hike. If you want to get the best out of The Valley in a day, start by 9am at The Valley floor and BE PREPARED. Have at least 3 liters of water or more per person and plenty of salty snacks. Make sure to also have lots of sunscreen and copious amounts of bug spray. For a not-so experienced hiker or outdoorsman, I was able to pace myself to be able to make it all the way to Glacier point and back to The Valley floor. Be aware, it’s tough. But undeniably the greatest scenery is from the top at Glacier point, which has restrooms and a mini mart for water and supplies along with souvenirs.

Nice trail

Did a day hike to the Canyon Creek Lakes and L Lake. For the distance, the elevation is quite tame for most of the hike up to the Canyon Creek Lakes. For those who want to journey a bit farther up to L Lake, the trail is loosely marked with cairns as it winds up a drainage area. Beautiful views of the valley from L Lake, worth the extra climbing effort. Will definitely be back to camp when more of the summer smoke has cleared. Passed 30-40 people on my round trip hike over Labor Day weekend.

Fantastic hike! We started early in the morning, around 7:30am when the trail did not have too many people on it. The trail is fairly well maintained throughout and signage being fairly good. The two sets of stairs to the top of Vernal and Nevada falls can be difficult if you are not used to going up that number of stairs. Outside of the stairs the trail is not too steep. There are plenty of opportunities to take a break and enjoy the number of stunning reviews across the area. A word of warning, starting the hike later in the morning will leave you with the crowds, making it hard to navigate the stairs.

Be sure to take plenty of water with you (2-3L per person) and snacks. The hike is long (took us nearly 5 hours to complete with breaks).

The hike is also longer than 6.4 miles. The National park site has this hike (Mist trail/ John Muir trail) rated closer to 8 miles. My fitbit also tracked it at 8 miles as well. Long but absolutely stunning and worth every step.

backpacking
13 days ago

One of the best place to go backpacking in California

on Lake Siskiyou Trail

13 days ago

Great acclimation hike mostly in shade with great views of Mt. Shasta.

The mist trail is one of my favorite trails ever! This trail is best when it is not too crowded (avoid weekends or holidays) as it becomes a lot like a theme park and you can't really enjoy the beauty of the hike when you are hiking in a single file line of hundreds of tourists and screaming children.

This trail is definitely tough as you climb stairs straight up Vernal Falls and climb the switchbacks up to Nevada Falls. It is totally worth it! The views are spectacular! If you go during or immediately after a heavy rainy season, bring waterproof gear because you will get drenched.

If you go during the warmer months when the John Muir Trail is open, take the JMT back down to get beautiful panoramic views of Half Dome and Nevada Falls. This section of the JMT is shady and the switchbacks can get a little slick with loose gravel and dirt. I recommend good hiking shoes and trekking poles.

This trail also has restrooms galore! There are restrooms with flushing toilets at the trailhead and at the Vernal Falls Footbridge. There are vault toilets at the top of Vernal Falls and at the top of Nevada Falls. You never really need to worry about needing to go.

Definitely bring lots of water. Our group brought about 3 liters each and had to filter and refill water at the top of Nevada Falls. There is a drinking water filling station at the base of Vernal Falls at the Footbridge (about 1 mile in from the trail head) and there are no other opportunities to fill up after that unless you bring your own filtration system.

Awesome hike! Must do if you’re looking for a hard, 4-6 hour trail. Do the loop. Stairs from hell, then a nice stroll down the Muir Trail. Bring plenty of water. At least 2 liters.

15 days ago

Spectacular views from the top - not much to see on the way up except enjoying the serene walk and the waterfall midway. The top views make the hike worth it. A must do hike to see the whole valley and get a top down view of half dome.

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