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My boyfriend and I were told to hike Clouds Rest if nothing else, so we planned for it to be our last of the trip. We did an 8 mile hike the first day, about 13 the second, took a day off trip to Mammoth Lakes then planned to do it the fourth and final day. However, to our surprise despite Tioga Rd being opened that day, the conditions weren't ideal (a lot of snow - possibilities of getting lost). However after much debate we decided to do it...but from the valley floor. We ended up clocking 23 miles round trip from our campsite to the peak. After the first 3 miles moral was low on my end but nevertheless kept trucking until we both got a strong second wind and starting moving at a good clip. The last 1-2 miles of these were probably the toughest for me and the scrambling at the top. More so because I was so anxious to finally get to the peak. However the views and satisfaction of reaching the top were unlike anything I have ever experienced. Until this trip my longest hike was a mere 4-5 miles at best....and here we just hiked up to a 10,000ft peak with 6,000ft elevation gain. It was great and I highly recommend it. On the way down we linked up with a worked in the park and ended up cruising (only stopping ONE time for 11 miles) making our total time around 8:30. We left at about 8:00am...a late start and would recommend a 6-6:30am start if you don't plan on booking it like us. We were probably averaging 18-22 minute miles consistently the whole way. I ran out of water (packed 3 L) on the way down and panicked a little but borrowed some from our new buddy...and probably would have been fine if I didn't get any more in me. I DEFINITELY RECOMMEND THIS HIKE!!!

Sublime! Besides the awesome views, mist, and enormity of experience from such perspectives as are offered on this route, it was a treat to finally see the enormous bird that we heard for at least a half-hour making an odd fog horn-like noise: a blue grouse!

Tired and happy. Ive been up from Tenaya Lake several times over, but had never made the hike up from the valley. So i strapped my snowshoes to my pack and made the trek. Camped right around the junction of the JMT and Clouds Rest trail, before summiting in the morning. As of yesterday, snowshoes are needed after about 7000ft. Recommend an axe and crampons for the summit. The snow makes everything look magical. Worth every step.

Great Family Hike to waterfalls with 2 kids (10 and 7).
Easy to moderate hiking

Really easy, shorter hike. Hiked in October and were the only ones on the trail!

Awesome trail I've been able to do a couple of times...

stunning in the winter!

Not an easy trail.
Even if your in the middle of the worst drought in twenty years bring your rain gear!
The camp site was great and there were lots of places to have a safe fire when I went.
The tail starts off easy, but got progressively more difficult the farther I continued. I was with a big group and there were plenty of areas for everyone to explore and have an amazing time.
The way out was a lot easier than the way in.
You can meet a lot of really fun and interesting people who love the outdoors as much as you do.

This is an amazingly wonderful hike. Has great views and a fairly easy/moderate skill level. Shady trees in most spots.

Beautiful easy hike.

All good when you first start out and the top of North Dome was stunning. Coming back was kind of tough on the knees. I was sore for days after but worth it.

My favorite trail. The views are amazing.i hike this once a year!

Amazing when waterfalls are maxed

did this early December, beautiful!

4 months ago

By far the greatest hike my girlfriend and I have ever been on. We went on the last weekend that the Tioga Pass was open, no one was on the trailhead. We too the lower lake route. The first mile is the hardest, gaining elevation really fast. We took a few breaks when needed. The rest was fine. I recommend going the end of October/start of November if you want the best view. There was some snow from a recent rain, rivers & waterfalls frozen. I plan on doing this hike again next year.

We did this hike yesterday. Nervous that it might be too icy/ snowy at this time of year but it was a lovely hike. We hiked up the 4 miles trail & came down this trail. Spectacular day in Yosemite.

Good day hike. We did it with some snow on the trail, which made it a little more challenging.

some spectacular views of the yosemite valley. I hiked from glacier point to Nevada falls and back up to glacier point. 2nd day, hiked sentinel dome. I will do it again.

Wonderful memories revisited and a great workout.
Love being up here in Autumn!

By far my favorite hike I have done in Yosemite from glacier point down to illohoutte falls cross a bridge upside of another mountain then down to Nevada and then vernal falls and back to the valley .. amazing views the whole entire time

Started on tioga road at the porcupine trailhead descended down then was flat for a good mile or so then slight 2 or 300 foot climb up a switchback visited Indian rock and camped right above north dome for the night incredible sunset next day descended down to the dome and hung out for a while great view but was even better from our campsite because half dome to the left. Coming back up was a good little ass kicker then headed back down to the valley from a trailhead that kicked my butt longest mile or 2 I ever hiked coming back down by mirror lake .. I think it was called the snow creek trail ... altogether felt like we hike 10-12 Miles that day I was absolutely exhausted when I made it back to my cabin

Hiked this WED, JUL 20, 2016 then back up to the start by way of the Four Mile Trail. Best day of hiking in my life. This trail is ranked #1 in my books. Beautiful! I can't wait to do it again!

5 months ago

Beautiful views, but holy anxiety attack! If you have a fear of heights, skip this trail. I did a quick peek at the overlook and had to take off. The drop off was crazy!

This hike is a BEAST! Lots of incline, and the altitude got to me the last few miles. I would go .2 miles or so and need to stop for a bit and keep going. When I saw the rock at the end I though "oh hell no", but did it anyway and wow. The view is absolutely amazing.

I would recommend not doing this as a day hike. I am in good shape and hike often and it was still very challenging. If you do do it as a day hike though, I would suggest starting at 5:30am or earlier if you want to get down before dark. The camp is about 4/5 miles up the trail (permit needed).

Best hike in Yosemite from the valley

I wanted a quick day hike and this trail served that purpose well. The trail is steep and in hot weather I would suggest getting an early start because the trail is pretty exposed in some parts. The falls had little water but it was still a nice spot to have lunch. The views of Half Dome, Clouds Rest, Vernal and Nevada Falls are breathtaking to see all together. Definitely a good option if you're trying to avoid the crowded valley floor.

6 months ago

Definitely recommend this trail to everyone. Went this past Tuesday & the weather was lovely! We even caught a few glimpses of snow. The beginning was a little steep and had me out of breathe but it got much better. The only reason I won’t rate it five stars is due to lack of signs on the way back from the trail. It can be confusing. Boyfriend and I came across a hiker who was lost & we worked together to find our way back on the trail.

We did a day hike. The trail head states 10.5miles to the top, so the app is wrong stating it is 19miles round trip. Where the trail splits for Half Dome, the sign states 4.3miles to Clouds Rest and from that point on prepare to climb continuously. By far the toughest part of the hike but completely worth the views!

This hike is nothing short of legendary.

Our equipment put this round trip at 22 miles, officially from the parking lot, I believe it is 20.8, but forget the semantics either way this is a hell of a hike.

We started at 6:30am at the trail head parking lot beyond Half Dome Village, summited at 12:30, spent 30 minutes at the top, headed back down at 1:00pm and got back to the car at 5:15pm.

My girlfriend and I chose an early October Sunday which delivered perfect weather for our ascent, I wouldn't recommend much later in the season as even on this day where the valley reached 70 degrees, our 6:30am start was near freezing and the top of Clouds Rest even at midday hovered around 50F but the wind chill up there can be intense.

Anyway to the guts of the hike, overall the hike is difficult, nobody is kidding around here, but it does give you many groovable stretches where you can get in your hiker zone and grind it out, very rarely are there unbearable stretches of steep terrain with the exception of the vernal and Nevada Falls steps and the final couple hundred feet of scrambling before the summit. Vast miles of this hike are simply meandering switchbacks that gracefully stride ever upwards at a manageable clip. This is key. Both of us are in good shape but neither of us does this type of distance or elevation gain regularly, just put one foot in front of the other and groove it out, you'll be fine.

In an odd turn of events I consumed less than a liter of water on the way up, i have no way of explaining this or understanding how I didn't feel thirsty, maybe the elevation? Not sure. either way, we both packed 3L of water and consumed close to all of it by the end of the day, on a hotter day, throw that number out the window, you'll need much more. A water filter would be of great use as there was water next to the trail as high as 7200 feet and 6.2 miles in at high camp where the official Clouds Rest trail branches from the John Muir trail

Overall, the rare views of Half Dome from the east, the valley and the feeling that you are atop the world make this one of the greatest hikes I've ever done.

Training successful, on to Cactus to Clouds next month.

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