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Sentinel Dome Trail

EASY 658 reviews
#8 of 244 trails in

Sentinel Dome Trail is a 2.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Yosemite Valley, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking and trail running and is best used from April until November.

Distance: 2.1 miles Elevation Gain: 456 feet Route Type: Out & Back

hiking

running

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

Sentinel Dome starts from Glacier Point Road and scales one of Yosemite's high domes and offers a full breathtaking 360 degree view. It provides one of the very best NP experiences for the effort you can find. To the west, you'll see almost a reverse Tunnel View of the Yosemite Valley and can see beyond to the Merced River canyon. To the north is Yosemite Valley, including El Capitan and Yosemite Falls. You'll see Nevada Falls, Half Dome and Clouds Rest to the east, and many of the High Sierra peaks. This summit was made famous by Ansel Adam's 1940 photo of the Jeffrey Pine tree. The tree perished in 1977, and fell over in 2003. The trail crosses a bridge over a stream near the beginning of the hike and gradually slopes up along a granite floor among the pines. It then turns slightly left and after a gradual climb through more pines, meets the base of the dome, where you then take a sharp left straight up onto the exposed dome. Enjoy the views! An alternate route begins at the service road entrance about a half mile towards Glacier Point from the main trailhead. This spur joins the main trail at the base of the dome and is about two thirds of a mile.

hiking
4 hours ago

A must. Good for all ages and experience. Some of the best views you’ll see of half dome and El Cap

recorded Sentinel Dome Trail

hiking
11 days ago

Fantastic 360 degree views of half dome and El Capitan at the top of the trail.

hiking
11 days ago

Views!! Must do when visiting Yosemite!

hiking
12 days ago

If you do one hike in Yosemite make sure it’s this one......360 degrees of the entire Yosemite Valley! Most folks can do it! Last 1/4 mile is a bit steep but not crazy. Do this hike to get a full appreciation of the park!

hiking
15 days ago

The biggest bang for your buck in Yosemite. A short, easy trail with incredible views of the Yosemite Valley on one side and El Capitan on the other. We did this hike early in the morning (just after sunrise) to avoid crowds, but due to the way the light hits the valley you will probably get better pictures if you complete this a little later in the day.

hiking
20 days ago

Incredible 360 views of Yosemite Valley (El Cap, Yosemite Falls (although dry on our visit), Half Dome, Nevada Falls and beyond) from the top of Sentinel Dome! Relatively easy hike from the trailhead though worth noting that the the hike starts at 7,500+ feet so if this is the first thing you do in Yosemite you may want to take it slow to acclimate to the altitude. A bit of scrambling over rocks and to climb the dome itself but nothing that difficult. Not at all shaded and we found it to be quite dry so bring plenty of water to avoid dehydration from the altitude and the sun. From our parking which was just beyond the trailhead entrance and back was ~2.5 miles and took 1:30 hours which included 20+ plus mins at the top taking in the glory of Yosemite from what had to be one of the best vantage points!!

hiking
24 days ago

Amazing views 360deg, some snow cover in early May but passable.

hiking
26 days ago

it was breathtaking worth the hike

hiking
27 days ago

Absolute a must do hike! I did the loop coming from Taft point taking the Pohono trail around to Sential Dome. The views of the valley on this trail are fantastic! It’s more of a moderate trail with a few switch backs but it’s well worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

Simply a great hike. It only takes around 30-45 minutes to the top and only the last five-or-so minutes are a bit challenging (though nothing too wild). The views are phenomenal. And surprisingly, when I did it in early September in the late afternoon, it wasn't crowded at all either.

hiking
1 month ago

Loved it! Easy, comfortable path and great sense of achievement once you get to the top. Going up Sentinel Dome will certainly raise your heartbeat but I felt quite safe, the rocks are quite steep but providing good grip. The views were absolutely amazing!

hiking
1 month ago

Sentinel Dome + Glacier point

hiking
no shade
rocky
1 month ago

Challenging trail with some elevation but the views of El Capitan and Half Dome along with the rest of the park are incredible. Getting to the top is way worth it.

hiking
scramble
1 month ago

Easy start, quite hard last meters, but worth the effort ! great 360 view. I suggest the Taft Point one in first.

hiking
1 month ago

Labor Day was hot, dry and dusty. Three to 4 minute ascent. There are better hikes at Yosemite.

hiking
1 month ago

Amazing views of half dome for sunset, budget a half hour or so to make it in and 20 minutes back to the car.

hiking
scramble
1 month ago

hiking
no shade
1 month ago

Best trail in Yosemite! 360 views, easy/short hike. Definitely recommend taking the “short cut” trail or service entry about half a mile down the road from the regular parking area. Slightly steep/strenuous at the end of the trail up to the top of the dome but totally worth it. Best trail I hiked all weekend and only took about 20 minutes one way. 10/10 would recommend.

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

If you want some of the best views of Yosemite but don’t want to do a challenging hike, this is where you should be. Easy hike, stunning views of Half Dome, El Capitan, Yosemite Falls, all of them! I did this 1 day after hiking Upper Yosemite Falls and it was a perfect “not too challenging” hike where you can sit up top to chill and take in the awesome views!

hiking
1 month ago

Great views. Easy hike except for the last 50 meters that go up steep. But worth it.

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

amazing. Definitely worth the time.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

This was a perfect easy hike! We were not staying in Yosemite so we drove far (3 hours) to go on this short hike. It was worth every minute! We hiked it and were able to see a view of the major places we hoped to go to....El Cap, Half Dome, Yosemite Falls and more. It was beautiful. There were other people there but wasn’t so crowded that it took away from anything. We decided to walk further so we went out to Glacier Falls from here. We didn’t know what to expect but didn’t see anyone as we hiked and then all of a sudden we got to Glacier Falls and it was full of tourists and a gift shop. It didn’t take away from anything but important to know.

hiking
1 month ago

The way is not difficult as it looks like, don’t scare about its appearance.

hiking
2 months ago

A short hike, minimal effort for some of the most amazing views of Yosemite.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful trail with panoramic view of the valley! A little bit challenging four people who don’t have good exercise tolerance, combined with the altitude. Absolutely worth it! My only suggestion is to get there early in order to beat the crowds with regard to finding parking.

hiking
2 months ago

Very crowded at the regular parking spot, highly recommend parking at the “short cut” about a half a mile down the road on the right, across from the service road gates to the left. Nobody parked there. Took the service road right up to the top. Much shorter and saved a lot of time.

hiking
2 months ago

The views are fantastic, and you can avoid the stopped traffic at Glacier Point. Looks deceptively steep as you approach the dome, but it is a relatively easy trip to the top. This area is worth visiting from the valley. Don’t miss it!

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