Waterwheel Falls Trail

MODERATE 5 reviews
#89 of 228 trails in

Waterwheel Falls Trail is a 36 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Tuolumne Meadows, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October.

36.0 miles
6,122 feet
Out & Back



nature trips

trail running





wild flowers


no dogs

5 months ago

Really pretty trail but a little hard for our older Shepard. The large rocks were daunting for him. Might hit up the trail with just our husky next time, he loved jumping in the water and swimming even though it was super muddy.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

This is a great hike. It is listed as easy? I think not. The first 4 miles are easy but then the next 2 are Moderate with lots of cobble stone ups and downs to Glen Aulin. Then 2 more miles of easy majestic meandoring beside the tuolume river and below huge peaks and then more cobblestone drops down beside, Le conté, California and Waterwheel falls. All well worth it for One of the most Beautiful varied gules around. Remember, unless you retrace your ateos to climb back out to Tuolume meadows, you must go down to Paté valley, Hetch Hetchy vía the Grand Canyon of Tuolume. I did it 18 miles in One day and bit off more than my feet has wanted. Overnight at Glen Aulin is suggested if going in and out.
Have fun, you will be impressed.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Simply gorgeous!!!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Of all the hikes in Yosemite, this one is by far my favorite. Because it's a ways away from the main valley, you won't be running into too many people on this hike, which is a nice contrast to the Half Dome hike which suffers from thick crowds of people. The Water Wheel Falls hike, while long, can be done in a day, but if you attempt this it is my recommendation to start as early as possible otherwise you may be hiking back in the dark. On your eight mile hike down to water wheels you'll come across several other waterfalls, a couple might require you to deviate from the main trail to view, but there's plenty to see if you only hike a portion of the trail. Because the trail head starts at the top of the mountain you have to take into account that the hike back (up) can be much more exhausting, though the elevation change is minimal compared to Half Dome. One last thing to note is that I performed this hike is August, when most waterfalls in the park begin to dwindle, though the falls on this hike they were in full force, so if you make it to Yosemite late in the season, that's all the more reason to try this hike.

Sunday, August 14, 2016