Explore the most popular birding trails near Curry Village with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

hiking
1 month ago

Wonderful gentle stroll with plenty of side paths to take for bouldering. Easy path to take for people who aren't certain they want to venture out too much. Nice start to the day for people who have bigger plans.

Only did this one from Curry Village to Tioga Pass Rd with my son and our friend when they were young. Awesome and pretty difficult at the time, especially for the boys. Didn't really plan to go there but it was great!

1 month ago

Walked here in 6/29/18. Disappointed to find that the lake had evaporated to grasses and streams. This is a seasonal lake, so you have to get there early spring to see it’s full reflective beauty.

on Mirror Lake

hiking
1 month ago

Went in late Aug, but there wasn’t much water left in the lake. Can’t see the reflection of mountain in a sunny day. Pity. The trail was in great condition with quite a few ppl. Still a enjoyable easy hike.

2 months ago

Great hike, but might be a little misleading as there are a few ways to approach it. One is super easy along the road, which I believe would be out to the lake and back. Another is along with the signs - on a dirt hike which is actually quite uphill and rocky at moments.

To go to the lake and back and make it a loop, you need to cross the river! There is no paved way to cross it. Or you make a big loop which according to Yosemite website is approx. 5 miles total. We did the dirt hike to the lake, went back a few hundred feet to a narrow and shallow river part, crossed the river and walked back along with the road.

Fun hike, but we were scratching our heads along the way :))

Cute walk, but include taft point! It's such a small detour

hiking
2 months ago

Yes, great little walk to be done in the evening!

walking
5 months ago

Easy Trail on paved path and road with minimal traffic (early Spring). Slight incline up to lake, then dirt path around lake. Wonderful views, good for all ages and hiking levels.

Did this trail a bit inadvertently, as I was planning to loop back to the trailhead. The JMT was closed for winter so I took the Panoramic. A great hike with great views. Stopped short of the last footbridge before turning back as it was getting late. Ended up hiking down from Nevada Falls in the dark. Took about 6 hours with only a couple short stops.

As per NPS website: "Dogs are not allowed on hiking trails.. dogs are generally allowed on paved trails on the floor of Yosemite"

backpacking
Thursday, July 27, 2017

Beautiful & challenging but not uncomfortable.
We did a four night five-day trek.
Started at Glacier Point & camped the first night at Illilouette. Very peaceful and beautiful hike along the Illilouette Creek. Next morning had to cross the creek where the water was knee high and freezing! Wish I had brought my Keen water shoes not just flip flops- luckily no one fell in

Wow what a hike! Got into Yosemite around 3 in the morning. It was pretty dark so I took my time driving up to the sentinel dome parking lot. Starting hiking around 4:30 with a flashlight and this app. Trail was well marked I could follow it pretty much in pitch black. The hike to sentinel dome was pretty easy but the climb up the dome was pretty steep so make sure to watch your step.

Watching the sunrise from the top of the dome was one of the most serene and awesome experiences I've done while hiking. Only one other group was up there, so plenty of space to walk around, sit on a rock, and enjoy the amazing views. I would recommend a million times over if you are able to witness the sunrise, you won't regret it.

After about an hour and a half of relaxing I decided to hike to glacier point. Mostly downhill and again amazing views. The hike back up, being the same trial just in reverse is all uphill so it can be difficult for people not in the best of shape. As I continued down the Trail going counterclockwise below the dome I encountered a fairly easy hike with amazing views of the valley. Make sure to bring bug spray. In the early morning it was buggy! There is a little off trail when you meet a creek that flows off the face of the mountain. Take that little trail maybe .1 miles and you will have amazing views similar to that of Taft point but with a lot less people. Be careful, the side of the mountain is a straight drop hundreds of feet down and unlike Taft point, there is no guardrail.

I continued down the trail to Taft point and it was a mix of uphill and downhill so parts can be difficult. Taft point again just like everywhere else on this hike had amazing views.

In total I spent 6 hours and hiked about 8 miles. Well worth it to see some of the best sites this world has to offer.

backpacking
Wednesday, February 08, 2017

I started this hike from Glacier point with 3 others. I couldn’t get a permit for Little Yosemite Valley, so I opted for the next closest thing which was Illilouette Creek. We would be back on the trail I wanted by the next morning anyway. So this was a slight detour. So we headed down towards the creek with all our gear for a 6 day adventure. We crossed a small creek right before getting to where we would cross Illilouette creek. It was running pretty good but no problems crossing. When we got to where the trail crosses Illilouette, that was another story. The creek was running really deep and swift. There was no getting across right here. So we stopped for a while to weigh our options. One of them not being swept away. We scouted around for a place to cross but things weren’t looking to good. We ended up chatting with a guy who had just crossed and he told us where. It was a ways upstream, so I scoped it out and deemed it doable. The water was about waist deep on me, and higher on the rest of group. It was also about 60’ across too. We all did get across though, and made our way to a nice clearing that was close by for the first night. The next day brought us to Nevada Falls where we took our first break. Then on past Little Yosemite Valley to a nice camp spot right off the trail that was just before the cut off to Clouds Rest. We spent 2 nights here. The next day we summited Clouds Rest. Incredible views from on top, and nice to be able to do it without the backpacks on. The next morning we packed up and headed for Merced Lake. Once off the JMT, the trail descended gradually down to the river. The outflow from the lake was just as impressive as the inflow from above. Some wild whitewater. We spent one night at the campground by the lake, and the next day headed down river to LYV for our last night. This is a beautiful stretch of trail through here. Granite and water everywhere. LYV is a busy campground. Lots of people. The final morning we packed up and headed back to Glacier Point. Our original plan was to do a high country trip out of Tuolumne Meadows, but most of my planned route was still snowbound. So we had to regroup totally. But this was a really nice loop.

hiking
Tuesday, December 20, 2016

After heavy precipitation upon Yosemite Valley, my father and I decided to drive and see the falls. Having already taken the Yosemite Falls to El Capitan route- and since there was snow on North Dome- we opted to take the Mist/John Muir Trail to the top of Vernal and Nevada Falls. While this alone s a strenuous and astonishing hike, we added on to our route by continuing on the Panorama Trail with the goal of seeing Illilouette Fall.

Having stayed in Merced the night before, we arrived at the trailhead (after a two hour drive) at 7:30 AM. The temperature was below freezing, but both Bridalveil and Yosemite Falls had healthy flows, and the roaring Merced River had accompanied us throughout most of the drive on Highway 140.

The route began as somewhat leisurely, as the first incline was on a paved surface alongside the Merced River. About a mile in, we reached a footbridge that crosses over the Merced River; from here, the Mist Trail was closed due to treacherous conditions. The established winter route requires hikers to take the more lengthly John Muir Trail to the top of Vernal Falls.

The John Muir trail was initially paved, but it slowly faded away into a rocky, sporadically icy trail through a sparse forest. Intermittent views of the valley, including Yosemite Falls, complimented us throughout the entirety of our incline; additionally, the Panoramic Cliff rose 2,000' above us, providing an intimidating sight.

The trail eventually began an icy descent to Clark Point. The trail was laden with ice from a completely frozen creek, causing us to descend at a much slower pace than normal. We opted to make up for the lost time by deciding not to venture to Vernal Fall, and hopefully view it in full glory the next time we undertake the trail.

We arrived at the base of Nevada Fall some ten minutes later, and were delighted to see it roaring as it cascaded down a rocky cliff. Ice and frost were prevalent on both sides of the waterfall, with the rocks at the base of the falls being entirely covered with ice. It was essentially the embodiment of Yosemite's waterfalls in the winter, improved with above-average flows.

The Mist Trail continued adjacent to Nevada Fall, rising some 600' in a matter of a few switchbacks. We were able to ascend the rocky switchbacks without much difficulty, for we were favorably distracted by an unparalleled view of Nevada Fall. However, there was a light dusting of snow and ice in some areas, which (unfortunately) required attentive steps.

The scene from the top of Nevada Fall was unforgettable. 600' feet down, the Merced River flowed through a forested landscape, covering its banks in frost and ice. Directly besides us, Nevada Fall flowed in full glory, plummeting to its base. We had a momentary break to observe the falls, and replenished our energy with a sizable serving of trail mix and quite-near-frozen water.

After taking pictures of the statuesque Liberty Dome, we continued up switchbacks to the start of the Panorama Trail. The landscape instantly morphed into an icy, snowy wonderland, as it passed through collections of towering trees. The Panorama Trail offered panoramic (hence its name) views of Yosemite Valley, with Yosemite Falls energetically flowing in the distance.

Unfortunately, we couldn't devote the majority of our attention to the views, for the trail was extremely icy. The remnants of the precipitation from two nights before had entirely frozen over, with frozen, miniature runoff streams causing us to nearly slip and fall over every crossing. We were able to maneuver through, and occasionally around, these obstacles to the footbridge crossing Illilouette Falls.

Due to time constraints, we opted against continuing on the Panorama Trail after the footbridge, and were therefore unable to view the elusive Illilouette Fall. However, despite the ice, snow, and falling short of Illilouette Fall, our trek was unforgettable and rendered our hiking ambitions fulfilled- for a few days, at least.

I would heavily recommend undertaking this trail in the winter, especially if you're fortunate enough to come after a significant rainfall. In the summer, tourists and casual hikers will be aplenty, and will mask the serenity of Yosemite. Plan carefully, bring enough water, and have fun!

This is part of the far longer Pohono Trail, this portion goes between Sentinel Dome and Taft Point and can be used to go from one area to another. We saw this path on our way to and from Taft Point and took it instead of going back to the trailhead and then on to Sentinel Dome. Let our mistake be a warning to you, if you are going to hike this section you should do it in the reverse direction, start at Sentinel Dome and head towards Taft Point.

Going in the direction that we went, towards Sentinel Dome, it starts off on fairly even ground and takes you through a nice wooded area giving way in to an open rocky area, eventually leading to a small creek and then its uphill the rest of the way. Make no mistake, this is far from the hardest hike you are going to find in Yosemite, but its by no means easy, the continual uphill part makes this a quite challenging hike, if you decide to go in the direction we went you will most likely find that everyone else hiking this will be going the opposite direction.

However despite all of this, you are going to see some amazing scenery along the way! This follows the south rim of the valley and you are treated breathtaking and high elevation views of the valley below, the falls, and even Half Dome. This can be a hard hike depending on where you start, but its definitely worth it in the end!

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