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Majestic, grounding, and rewarding hike! Not to busy in the winter but pretty icy at the top. Took 5 hours from start to finish.

My girlfriend and I did this hike last Tuesday (12/4) and thoroughly enjoyed being surrounded by some of the oldest and rarest trees in the world!

The only reason I gave this hike four stars instead of five is because of the road closure to the upper parking lot that added an additional mile to our hike on a paved road. I understand the need to close certain roads when they became dangerous or undriveable, but there were multiple national parks vehicles driving back and forth on the road, and the lot would have been easily accessible for even a front-wheel drive vehicle.

Having said that, this was a magnificent hike and it was quite impressive to be in the presence of these towering giants. My personal favorite was either Grizzly Giant or Fallen Monarch. At 209 feet tall, Grizzly Giant reaches for the sky with its gigantic branches like some magical tree out of Harry Potter. The Fallen Monarch almost looks like an octopus with its massive tentacles reaching out to touch you.

We didn't complete the entire loop (because of time constraints) and instead turned left at the road roughly 0.7 miles in. We then turned left again after encountering The Faithful Couple, making our round-trip on the trail about 2.5 miles (not including the mile on the road).

I would love to return in the summertime to complete the entire loop, but I felt as though we made the most of our time!

My girlfriend and I did this hike on Monday (12/3), and it totally kicked our butts!

We had originally planned on just going up to Columbia Rock and back. But after making it up in just 45 minutes, and with it being such a nice day, we decided to push forward and see how far we could make it up to the top.

This ended up being an incredible idea, as we encountered only three or four other hikers on our way up, and the views from the overlook were truly unforgettable!
However, in the deep snow (over a foot in places), the zig-zagging back and forth through the switchbacks made me question our decision at times …

But this is a truly incredible hike with breathtaking views of Half Dome and the Upper Falls leading up to the summit.

CAUTION: Make sure you are cognizant of your surroundings (i.e. falling ice), as there were some massive chunks that came cascading down the mountain side and landed within an arm's reach of us.

The climb to the top is absolutely worth it though, just be prepared to feel that 3,100 feet-plus of elevation gain on your way up.

We thoroughly enjoyed this hike for its solitude, challenge and beauty. Would love to come back in the summertime when the falls are gushing!

Awesome views. Great way to take in Yosemite Valley.

hiking
8 days ago

Scariest hike ever. I'm talking about the cable portion, it is steep as hell and even steeper than photos when you see it in person. But it is do-able you just have to focus on moving to the next wooden board. The wooden boards I believe are spaced out 10 feet from each other from the bottom of the dome to the top. It took us about an hour just to get to the top because there was traffic lots of people going up and down simultaneously. We had to take turns for those coming down and those going up. To get to the top without traffic should only take maybe 10-15 mins to give perspective on what traffic does. Also the traffic IMO makes it more scary because you have to hold onto the cables even longer.

I'd recommend using gloves with a latex coating to help with the cables as it gives your hands much more grip and you'll avoid blistering your hands like many other people.

I'd recommend doing it if you want to face your fears. Just take it one wooden board at a time until you reach the top and you'll be fine. Lots of people did it and have done it.

Would I do it again? Probably not lol just because it was scary as shit. BUT DO IT ONCE AT LEAST :D

Awesome hike! I completed it yesterday 12/6/18. The last third of the trail gets quite slippery with hard packed snow. I put my microspikes on at the lookout at the top, but should have put them on sooner. The final path down to the lookout is very exposed and covered in loose sheets of snow and ice, though the metal railing made it passable. I was grateful for gloves, as well as sunglasses and sunscreen - the snow glare was bright. I continued another .8 miles past the falls to Yosemite Point - it was a great view but a lot of trouble (deep snow) to get there. If you aren't up for it, you can still take the short walk out that way to the wooden bridge. It's picturesque :)

Not much of a hike but the view of the falls is stellar. Parking lot fills up quickly so plan a very early trip. Stop by tunnel view afterwards just up the road

Amazing hike did this back in September and forgot to put a review, but this hike is beautiful! We left early in the morning at 2am and it was perfect going up in the dark with headlamps and enjoying seeing things from a different perspective rather than going later like 7am so heading down you see everything that you didn’t going up so it makes the hike better since it’s pretty much a 10hr hike. Going up early at 2am and not knowing much farther you have to go was just great, but to just keep moving and the hike went by quick because by the time daylight started to show we were at the base of sub dome. Heading down was quick n easy, but by 10am traffic rolls in and makes it difficult.

Leave early for the hike to make the cables with little to no traffic. Make it before 8am cause up top people start to roll in and head down the cables with traffic is a pain to wait for people to pass n continue to descend.

The hike in general starts pretty easy for those that hike normally. The hike gets tough when you hit the foot high steps n they continue to get higher n higher, but that’s why you start early n you don’t see how much farther you have to go. Sub dome is just the same a bunch of foot high steps, but aren’t to bad if you go early and rest at the steps. Cables were surprisingly easy both up and down. Down is easiest, but going up isn’t bad if you have RUBBER GLOVES. Crazy beautiful site seeing going up cables and top. Used my GoPro and the videos are awesome.

Pack some good food and 4L of water. I managed to make it with 3L and have some left over,but it’s probably because we left early in morning.

Go prepared (food&water), go early, proper gear (boots&gloves, don’t forget permit, and enjoy the views going down.

hiking
21 days ago

What can I say, basically nothing beats this for a day hike.

We completed part of this trail on July 25, 2018 before our mandatory evacuation due to fires. We had to be out of the park by 9:00 so we knew we had to start early and hike fast. Due to the early evacuation, we were the only hikers on the trail. We moved as fast as we could in order to see as much as possible. The switchbacks definitely get the heart rate up and I went through quite a bit of water and the sun wasn’t even out. The steps were dusty and dry, but very slippery at times. Start early and bring plenty of water! Even though our hike was cut short due to the mandatory evacuation, this was my favorite hike!

We walked this trail back in July. It was a pretty quick walk so we decided to go off the regular trail. We went over the rocks and right up to the falls. It was still flowing in July.

Spectacular views.

I wouldn't repeat this hike. Completed in September 2016 and got lost for 30 minutes trying to find the parking lot despite following the signs.

Had to park at the visitor center and take the free 10-minute shuttle bus up to the trailhead (apparently only cars with handicap stickers can drive all the way in). The trail is very clean and well developed with educational signs about the grove. There are many options for different trails and loops. After about 1 mile, people thinned out which was nice. A peaceful and easy walk!

walking
26 days ago

Super short hike but the views are pretty!!

Well maintained trail. Lots to explore at the top so the whole hike took this 58 yr old 9 hours. In November, with only 10 hours of daylight, it was essential to start early. Thrilling cliffs and vistas. Loved having good boots and hiking poles. So did my 27 and 30 yr old daughters. But we saw others in tennis shoes and even hiking sandals!

super easy hike!

Pretty crowded hike but beautiful views. Got to the top in about 2 hours. Bring lots of water, even in November it got really hot.

Beautiful trail in the fall, the leaves are falling, crisp air and deer sighting. Relatively easy on both paths, small incline of stone steps but it can be done. Good hike for all ages.

Magical, went all the way to the top, where the waterfall hits the ground, pure heaven ☺️

hiking
1 month ago

The toughest I have ever done!! absolutely worth it! Me and friend went during off season when the cables came down. If that's the case please bring safety equipment (carabineers, harness, leather gloves) if you are planning to do the 400 ft. climb along the face of Half Dome. We did not have that equipment so I didn't do it, because safety always comes first! Have a safe hike guys and don't forget to bring lots of water and salted snacks :)

Don’t miss the magnificent views here! And don’t be scared by the 252 feet—the elevation gain is less than that.

Mind blowing Forrest! Those giants are impressive!

hiking
1 month ago

MGT is the road to the top. Plenty of side trails to use if you want. 4mi to the top and crowds thin after the main area. View at Wawona Point is worth it if you have 3hrs for the up & back plus pics along the way.

Enormous! Long but worth the trek

hiking
1 month ago

Bridalveil Falls trail, Yosemite. Water still falling in November when some of the other Yosemite Falls have dried up. Beautiful, ethereal, don’t miss it. I’ll be coming back in late spring.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice hike but only 4 stars as the falls have dried up until snow melt in late spring. I’ll be back then.

Incredible hike! I would do this again although I wouldn't try to be daring due to the recent death that was on the news about the Indian couple Vishnu Viswanath and Meenakshi Moorthy in October 2018. Thinking back, I even walked down inside a fissure that seemed to have solid grounding underneath between the rocks but I would not attempt that again. This place is so remarkable, you can spend hours taking photos.

Always a good trail, family friendly, fantastic perspective of Half Dome.

Excellent. Not crowded

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