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Woah! Great hike, straight up at some points but worth it. Some ice on the steps toward the top. Amazing views, wonderful waterfall and less than 10 people!

My girlfriend and I did this hike on Sunday (12/2) after having camped in the Upper Pines Campground the night before.

After watching sunrise at Tunnel View and exploring the Yosemite Valley Village, we made the short drive over to the small parking lot closest to the trail. We began our trek around 11:30 am and arrived back at our car around 4 pm.

From the very beginning of our hike it was incredibly icy. We saw a multitude of "tourists" attempting to climb the steep walkway leading to the Vernal Footbridge in nothing more than sneakers and other forms of unseasonable footwear. However, after this point we saw only three or four other groups of hikers on our way up Nevada Falls, all adequately prepared to take on the elements.

The initial staircase to the top of Vernal Falls wasn't too frozen over, until the very end, and that's when it became very slick. Luckily, my girlfriend and I were wearing our Yaktrax and that allowed us to maneuver our way up the stairs without issue.

Although neither one of the falls were gushing (as they do in the spring and summer) enough to give us the spray that The Mist Trail gets its namesake, it was probably for the best, as the vast majority of the trail was in the shade and I don't think it got above freezing. However, that didn't deter us from thoroughly enjoying this majestic hike with the stark contrast of sunshine reflecting off granite rocks against the fresh coat of snow on the shaded riverbank; which made for some magnificent photography opportunities!

This hike definitely lived up to the hype!

hiking
12 days ago

This hike is sooo worth it. It offers a great view of the high Sierra for not being that strenuous.

Wonderful hiking trail! A bit challenging with the incline but worth every step. Spectacular view of the waterfall and Yosemite rock structure.

Son of a gun, this trail was tough. This was due to the rock stairs and almost constant steepness. It got my knees on the way down - I had to stop and stretch those knees out from time to time. I split off to check out Little Yosemite at the top intersection because it was only 1 mile away, but then I got about halfway and saw the trail headed down which meant I'd have to go up again to come back. By then, I reached a "nope" point so I turned around and just went to Nevada. The falls were beautiful and the views from the top of Nevada were breathtaking. I had my snack on a ledge overlooking the fall edge. It was the best. I headed back down on John Muir Trail. I felt like both routes were equally steep.

Easy and fun hike and amazing 360 degrees view of Yosemite at the end. Loved it!

Hiked to the Backpacker’s camp. It was covered it snow. So beautiful. The hike is grueling but worth it.

Great hike! Did this in mid October, the waterfalls weren’t at full volume but the weather was great. Saw a momma bear and 2 cubs between Vernal and Nevada falls, and the views were incredible. Challenging but worth it. Came back the John Muir trail to change the scenery a bit. A must do

We hiked to Nevada Falls vía this trail back in September and absolutely loved it! The hike starts with an uphill on a paved trail for a few miles and the crowd of people starts to diminish once you get closer to Vernal Falls. The uphill is tough but don’t get discouraged, it’s worth the effort!! Vernal fall was not as strong during September which was helpful because there’s a few slippery rocks going up to Vernal. Once you pass Vernal and start reaching Nevada Falls the views are even more spectacular with Half Dome looking larger because you’re closer to it! Hiking shoes are helpful but you’ll get by with some running shoes. Take plenty of water, and a flashlight in case you get caught in the dark like we did. The hike took us about 7 hours round trip with sightseeing and lunch. Get out there and have fun!!

This hike was my first hike in Yosemite during my first visit to this amazing National Park. As others have mentioned, the stairs are challenging but well worth the views at Vernal Falls. During the Fall/Winter season the falls are not flowing as Spring/Summer but a beautiful sight nonetheless. Amazing hike, highly recommend.

awesome hike! we parked at the sentinel dome pull out and did a loop, going L first to Taft point (fissures are AMAZING!) then going around to sentinel dome via the upper trail as opposed to straight backtracking. that second leg of the hike we encountered maybe two other people. it's worth it to ascend sentinel dome when u get there, beautiful 360 views. great hike all around, moderate, not to hard at all. some inclines

If you take the shorter route up, be prepared for STAIRS FROM HELL- but super worth it. We took the shorter (but harder) route up, and the longer route down so it would be easier on the knees going down. Amazing views!!

Easy, fun, amazing views.

Beautiful! Amazing views all around. It was a tough climb for sure but I highly recommend it. Both waterfalls were still gorgeous even though they aren’t flowing at full capacity. We saw a mama bear and her two cubs as well as a bobcat on trail, pretty amazing!!

Awesome hike, definitely strenuous going up some of the steep areas. But it was worth it going up to Nevada Falls. Took the John Muir trail on the way down, much easier on the knees. Careful, There were some icy patches at the top of that trail. Took us 4 hours to hike, we covered about 8 miles.

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

Great. Two hikes in one. A Yosemite must. Not hard.

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.

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!

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.

Great hike take hit sentinel dome first to the right. This way avoids ton of uphill. Hit it early if you want parking. We started about 9AM not too many cars. Upon return no spots available about 1ish.

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
1 month ago

In all honesty, this is nearly as easy as the Taft Point Hike, just slightly longer. I'd suggest doing Taft first, then follow this up in the later afternoon so you can catch the magic hour on the dome itself.

The hike starts from the same point next to the road as Taft Point does. You'll find a porta potty, so go if you need too. You'll also need to bring a bottle of water with you. The trail as a whole is mostly dirt, with some small rocky sections. It isn't flat, but it really climb or a decent either. As you get closer to the Dome, you're gonna wonder, well, how the heck do get up onto that? Well, keep to the trail, it circles back behind the dome and you'll scramble up it from the east side where it's actually pretty gradual climb (you'll need zero rock climbing skills here. You're at one of the highest points in the park and you can see for miles in each and every direction from up here. Soak it in, enjoy it, it's the best and sooo much easier then climbing Half Dome too.

I brought along a flash light for the hike back to my car once the sun went down, great hike.

hiking
1 month 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.

hiking
1 month ago

Amazing walk. Not too tough walk, only major uphill bit is up sentinel dome (if you walk round that way first). Amazing Panoramic views at top of sentinel dome with views of half dome, el captain, three brothers and upper Yosemite falls (no water flowing from the falls however as was late October). Nice wooded walk to Taft point. Taft point was also incredible views with sharp cliff drop so not for those really scared of heights, but can just not go too close to the edge and there is a railing at the cliff edge. No toilets on the walk but some at the car pack at trailhead. Wasn’t too busy in late October but car park was very small and nearly full fit about 20 cars but there was some parking near by along the road.

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 :)

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