Nevada Falls

HARD 339 reviews
#21 of 244 trails in

Nevada Falls is a 5.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Yosemite Valley, California that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and trail running and is best used from May until October.

Distance: 5.4 miles Elevation Gain: 2,198 feet Route Type: Out & Back

hiking

walking

running

forest

partially paved

river

views

waterfall

hiking
rocky
25 days ago

Definitely a hard one if you aren’t prepared. Bring plenty of water. I took the stairs up to Nevada falls. At Vernal Falls, you can cross the falls if no water is coming over. Can eat your lunch in peace away from the crowds of people sitting on the water’s edge.

hiking
1 month ago

The first time around I had only made it to the bottom of Nevada Falls, which was still beautiful. So I decided to come back again and go to the top of the Falls. I started from the Mist Trail and passed Vernal Falls which can be quite tiring in itself. The ascend up to Nevada was very rocky and straining on the quads because there are a lot of rock step ups you have to do. There was definitely less people going up but do expect some traffic still. Once you reach the top, it is magnificent! Raging water from the Merced river is flowing down the side of the cliff and you can just hear and see how powerful nature is! Going down was much easier when you take the John Muir trail and by pass Vernal which was nice. You also get an amazing view of the fall from the side. Happy hiking! :)

hiking
1 month ago

Probs not the best for ppl who are scared of dying. Otherwise, great hike.

hiking
1 month ago

Great accomplishment, beautiful views. Checked it off the bucket list. IMO the hardest parts are the first and last mile, and the cables. The cable section is extremely steep and requires substantial arm strength to pull yourself up. Gloves and shoes with good traction are a must. We saw many people with normal tennis shoes or even van type shoes that are not good enough to provide traction in the cables. Bring plenty of water and get started early.

hiking
1 month ago

Holy cow. This was an awesome hike but strenuous doesn’t capture it. The hardest part was the sub down. The crowds were good and thin. Once-in-a-lifetime an absolute must be sure to train for it!

hiking
1 month ago

I love this hike. Less crowded than Mist trail and the views are spectacular!!

hiking
1 month ago

Wow that was a tough hike, but so rewarding. The hike is rated hard which is true, especially for a novice hiker like myself. Our group of 5 started at the trailhead at 10pm to beat the crowds and the heat. It was well worth it because after taking lots of breaks along the way we made it to the top of half dome by sunrise, beautiful. Bring at least 3 liters of water and some type of water purification filter so you can refill along the trail. I would say the toughest part of the trail is the last mile before you hit the cables. Enjoy

hiking
2 months ago

Busy busy trail - but spectacular views and the falls are impressive. It is a bit of a grind going up with a fair amount of stairs but so worth it. The hike down (John Muir trail) is shaded.

hiking
2 months ago

Its a very challenging hike but the views are amazing especially from the top of Nevada Fall.

hiking
scramble
2 months ago

Can’t get better than this! Views are worth the effort in the end. Better to get a really early start

hiking
2 months ago

Very difficult trail but the views are worth it.

hiking
3 months ago

Possibly the most rewarding hike I’ve completed in a long time. The uphill effort is so worth seeing the mist trail and the overlooks at Nevada Falls. We continued up to Nevada falls so we could have an easier descent down the stock trail and make a loop. This avoided descending the wet stairs of vernal falls. Take lots of water and snacks. Hiking poles are very helpful for this trail.

hiking
4 months ago

First of all this is easily my favorite hike I’ve ever done! The views from half dome are well worth the effort it takes to make it up there. We got to the trailhead parking lot a little after 5 and probably started the hike around 5:30am. We took plenty of breaks on the way up, rested for 30-45 minutes before the cables and spent a little over an hour on half dome. We got back to the lot around 6:15pm. I brought 6 liters of water and drank 5.5 but my girlfriend brought 4 and only drank 1. My advice would be to start as early as possible before the sun comes up to conserve water and energy. Carb up the night before and pack some light snacks. I brought way too much food and water because I wanted to be safe.. I read some reviews saying you can leave a bag at the bottom of the cables but the rangers advised against it so I had to struggle up the cables with a heavy backpack. The cables look intimidating at first but when you walk up to them it doesn’t look nearly as bad. If you’re having second thoughts when you get to the cables just ask anyone coming down how they felt about it and they will give you all the motivation you need!! It’s absolutely worth it but it does take decent upper body strength. The views at the top are amazing, I wish I spent another hour up there!! I did see two bears on the way down with a big group of people. It was between the split for the clouds rest trail and Nevada falls, maybe a mile or two from Nevada falls. Just be aware and if you see a bear make it aware of your presence. They mostly ignored us and went about their business but one started walking down the trail towards us when we were stopped looking at the other bear. We all made it out safely and the bears were not aggressive at all. If you get a permit consider yourself lucky and go out and crush it!!

The trail is easy, just make sure you are prepared to get wet at Vernal Falls, you will get soaked. The loop to the JMT is key because I wouldn’t want to return on the mist trail.

hiking
4 months ago

Took this trail down from the top after making the loop from the Panorama Trail. Its extremely busy on the weekends, but dont let that stop you from enjoying the amazing waterfalls. They are near peak flow right now with all the snow, but with the heavy snowpack, there will be plenty of water to see in the later part of the summer. The trail by the waterfalls has a lot of steep, wet stairs carved out the of rocks, so watch your footing and traffic jams from all the people. Yes, you will get wet on the Mist Trail section, but you will dry out very quickly... which is more refreshing that sweating in a rain jacket just to avoid a little water.

hiking
4 months ago

Favorite hike. I go about once a month while conditions allow. These falls are awesome. The shear power and there is always a rainbow when not overcast.

hiking
5 months ago

Great views of Vernal and Nevada Falls while doing half of Half Dome. Looking forward to doing the entire trail when the cables are up.

hiking
snow
5 months ago

Completed Mist Trail to Nevada Fall then John Muir Trail back. Falls are gushing as of 4/28. A bit of snow left on JMT that could cause a problem upon melting. Also a pop up waterfall right on the trail near the beginning of the JMT segment from Nevada Fall. You will get soaked so be prepared with quick drying clothes. Still, amazing hike overall!

6 months ago

Early April hike, took this trail because the Mist trail was closed. Some of the switch backs were still snow packed. Beautiful trail with beautiful views of Vernal Falls. went as far as Clark's Point

hiking
6 months ago

This is still one of my favorite hikes. The falls are beautiful and the views even better. take a lunch and plenty of water its uphill all the way

7 months ago

Still one of my top favorite trails and one of my hardest. Just Getting to Vernal fall is quite a hike you will see many tired hikers resting on the rocks on the steep ascent! Once you reach the bottom of Vernal Fall you will be amazed and motivated by the beauty. Then once you reach the top of Vernal fall you might as well go abit more to Nevada fall as you enjoy the incredible beauty all around!!!! One of the most gorgeous places for people that love nature! I went towards the end of October when the falls where low. I can't wait to go back in spring when they are full!

hiking
10 months ago

Really fun with a nice view, make sure to bring alot of water

hiking
Thursday, June 07, 2018

Good one, a lot of elevation gain for an easy trail, and you should consider the loop with mist trail. Worth it!

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Potentially hard on the knees for the over 50. But this is classic Yosemite and worth the effort. Water station at footbridge.

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