#22 of 61 national parks in United States of America

Best backpacking trails in Kings Canyon National Park

2,116 Reviews
Explore the most popular backpacking trails in Kings Canyon National Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
Map of backpacking trails in Kings Canyon National Park
Park information
Acreage:
461,901 acres
Contact
559-565-3341
Helpful links
Top trails (32)
#1 - Mist Falls
Kings Canyon National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(938)
Length: 8.7 mi • Est. 3 h 29 m
This popular route starts along the sandy Cedar Grove Trail, and then takes a left (north) onto the Mist Falls Trail. The trail is mostly moderate until the end, where there is a quick 600 foot gain to the waterfall. From San Francisco, the drive is roughly five hours. After a beautiful drive through the western part of Kings Canyon, you’ll end at Road’s End Trailhead, which is where this hike begins. If you are just day-hiking, and not taking an overnight trip, you do not need a permit to do this hike. This route follows along the sandy Cedar Grove trail, parallel to Bubbs Creek. After a couple miles, you’ll take a left (north) onto the Mist Falls Trail. As you climb into the wilderness, you’ll have some beautiful views of the canyon you were just in. Eventually you’ll reach the falls which are, as their name suggests, very misty! Be prepared to get wet! After the hot hike, it is a welcomed reprieve. The park road is closed in the winter time, so summer time is the best season to visit. Be sure to pack plenty of water, sunscreen and mosquito repellent. There is a restroom at the trailhead but no water or services. Unfortunately you’ll have to leave Fido at home, as this park is not dog friendly!Show more
#2 - Rae Lakes Trail
Kings Canyon National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(299)
Length: 41.4 mi • Est. Multi-day
You will need an update Wilderness Permit Application to visit this Park. Please find the application here: https://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/upload/NoYear-Wilderness-permit-app5-13-2020.pdfShow more
#3 - Hart Tree Trail Loop
Kings Canyon National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(156)
Length: 10.0 mi • Est. 5 h 3 m
#4 - Paradise Valley Trail
Kings Canyon National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(86)
Length: 17.1 mi • Est. 8 h 54 m
#5 - Hart Tree, Fallen Goliath, Redwood Creek Loop
Kings Canyon National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(225)
Length: 7.3 mi • Est. 2 h 57 m
This is a gorgeous hike through groves of giant trees. Seeing the Hart Tree is worth the hike - very impressive. Trail is more of rolling hills rather than steep inclines. Lots of shade. Show more
#6 - Mount Gould Trail
Kings Canyon National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(53)
Length: 9.0 mi • Est. 6 h 11 m
#7 - Onion Valley Campground to Rae Lakes via Kearsarge Pass
Kings Canyon National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(25)
Length: 23.8 mi • Est. Multi-day
#8 - John Muir Trail in Kings Canyon
Kings Canyon National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(14)
Length: 83.7 mi • Est. Multi-day
John Muir Trail - America's most beautiful long-distance trail - is a 220 mile point-to-point trail running from Yosemite Nat'l Park south to the summit of Mount Whitney, with an exit at Whitney Portal.Show more
#9 - Mount Williamson Trail
Kings Canyon National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(45)
Length: 25.4 mi • Est. Multi-day
This route leads up Shepard Pass and continues southeast towards Williamson Bowl. Follow some cairns to drop down and cross the boulder field. Cairns mark a way across the boulders. The hardest part of the trail is the west face route rock chute, but you can try the Bolton Browning route instead, although it is more technical. Final crux is a class 3 climb with little exposure. Once on the summit plateau, follow a few final cairns to the south summit.Show more
#10 - Onion Valley, Kearsarge Pass, Forrester Pass, Shepherds Pass Backpacking Trip
Kings Canyon National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(10)
Length: 54.9 mi • Est. Multi-day
Showing results 1 - 10 of 32