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

hiking
7 hours ago

Not for those with a fear of heights. Awesome views of the valley but I couldn’t bring myself to get close enough to the edges to really get a good view. There is one railing and the point is very large. Trail is pretty easy up until the very end where the elevation change is a little rough going back once you’re finished. Will definitely do again, I’m thinking for sunrise!

walking
14 hours ago

Not a bad walk, though I was a little confused as to which path I was supposed to take since there aren't any signs telling you which of the 3 or 4 intertwining trails you're on. Really great first intro to the park, and not long. Perfect for kids. There's a spot with a bridge where you can sit on some logs and it's great for couples and kids. There's also a few meadows and not strenuous at all. Come in the spring for the best effect since there's one or two waterfalls that would look fantastic with all the snowmelt.

Just amazing one thing to note this trail on AllTrails app brings you to the backside of clouds rest you won’t be going up the side they show on you tube also don’t take the same trail down take the John Muir down avoid the crowd crawling up

hiking
19 hours ago

If you want one of the best views of the park and to hike one of the most accessible trails, take this hike. The view is absolutely amazing. If you want/can handle a bit more of a challenge, Sentinel Dome is my recommendation, but standing at the edge of a cliff and beholding the fissures of the valley is simply breathtaking. Both Sentinel and Taft make for excellent sunset destinations, the former of which I can personally attest to. If you do one hike on a day trip, this should be it. There's no reason not to. Make it your last activity of the day and the sunset will be the perfect bookend to your visit.

on Sentinel Dome Trail

hiking
19 hours ago

Oh my gosh. This hike was amazing. Went there to see the sunset with my girlfriend and it was so worth the challenge it took to get there. It's quick but if you're more sedentary, the last half mile will kick your butt a bit on the way up. That being said, we aren't super hikers but we only took about two 1-minute breaks and were able to make the climb. Just take your time and you'll make it. It's not terrifyingly difficult, just a good workout for the middle quarter of the whole trip. At just a few hundred feet shorter than Half Dome's elevation, it's literally a much better all-around view than Glacier Point, in my opinion, and only 10% as much people because of the climb. I've also done Taft Point, and while I think the view from Sentinel is more grand and awe inspiring, Taft Point will give you a similarly beautiful scene for much less effort. You won't get to see Half Dome though, so choose wisely.

This was my first solo backpacking trip and my first time in Yosemite and this was the perfect route for both. I completed the route over 3 days 2 nights through the pouring rain most of the time but it didn’t even matter. The scenery was unreal from the beginning to end. I stayed at booth lake the first night and the morning scenery was beautiful there. I stayed a little past Merced Lake on the second night on a cliff overlooking the Merced River. I didn’t see a single soul until my last day when I hit the valley. What an amazing experience I can’t wait to return next spring.

hiking
1 day ago

Nice to have done it but the views aren’t the best. You can’t see Half Dome from Half Dome.

Did this hike on October 13th. It took us 7.5 hours to complete the hike with an hour on top for lunch. We started the hike at 8:30AM and reached the top by 12PM. The weather was chilly when we started but as the day progressed, it was perfect hiking weather. Sunny but not hot.Also there's a good balance of ascent and flat ground to recover on this hike. There's one big ascent that happens a couple of miles into the hike. After this there's a descent and then flat ground for a while. Then comes 2.5 miles of elevation gain to reach the top. Thought the final climb would be scary but it is not as treacherous as it seems from pictures. Not a cloud visible and stunning views from the top. Didn't find a lot of bugs on the hike. Descending was harder than the ascent as we hadn't carried hiking poles. Maybe that would have reduced the strain on our knees. Overall an amazing experience.

Nice

This was our best hike in Yosemite, for the non climbers it’s as rewarding as it gets.

For people leaving reviews saying it is very easy, I am guessing they are either extremely fit or didn’t do the whole trail. Many people we saw on the way in stopped at the initial dome/clearing and went back. It is not extremely clear and no sign denotes north dome that I saw, but make sure to keep going to the actual end dome.

It is deceptive after you get to the initial dome, from there you need to hike down to a little valley, and then ultimately go up again to get to the actual north dome. Going back up is what made the hike somewhat hard and definitely not a stroll in the park like some people have posted. Again if you just did the initial dome, yes it is easy.

hiking
4 days ago

Great view!! I think this trail and at the top of Sentinel Dome has a better view than Glacier Point. It was so cool being up in the cloud. This hike is very short and easy. I would definitely recommend this to people who like views.

Really great view of El Capitan's dawn wall as well as the fissures. A very nice easy 2 mile hike. Easy to do this one with children or people who can hike very easily.

Amazing!!! Such a cool bucket list hike. It’s the cables that make it so unique and such a cool experience. Took us about 10 hours round trip. Our feet were hurting at the end and we were definitely tired. Started at 6:15a and found easy parking in the parking lot closest to the trailhead. We were surprised that the parking lot was so full. Met a lot of nice and enthusiastic hikers. Had an amazing day! Can’t believe we hiked half dome!!!! We won our permits unexpectedly for the last day that the cables were up. Pretty lucky!

4 days ago

Awesome hike and definitely a bucket list item. Did it October 6th, took under 11 hours, absolutely gorgeous day and the views are killer as always. Took Mist trail up and John Muir trail back- though the JMT is longer by a mile the grade is much easier on the knees going down.
- while Mist trail is hard especially between Vernal and Nevada Falls, in my opinion Sub-Dome is the hardest part. It lasts forever or so it feels and the cables look easier in comparison.
- second time doing it, not sure I'll do it again but that's what I said 6 years ago so we'll see.

hiking
5 days ago

Okay, so I would definitely recommend training for this intensely. I only did one or two trails that were nowhere near this incline and it took me forever to do this. I am actually pretty apologetic to my friends for adding on extra time, but I didn't want to get injured, and I already fell coming down (no injuries other than a bruised ankle of the tiniest degree.) We started at the closest campground parking lot and walked to Half Dome through Vernal Falls and Nevada and the Valley.

The whole trip took us 16 hours! We started at 4 AM and took a lot of breaks, spent two hours at the top of the Dome, maybe 40 minutes climbing to Subdome, 20-30 minutes climbing the cables, and took even more breaks coming back down because it was worse and really difficult. Our 18.4 mile hike ended at about 7:35 PM! (48-60F weather)

I took 7L of water, which was excessive and probably why I slowed my friend group down a lot. I can get altitude sickness, so I was prepared to drink and pee a lot on the way, but my friends each drank 1.5L when they ran empty and they took 5L each. We hiked the last day the cables were up 10/9/18.

I saw people going down the cables two different ways. Do whatever works best for you. My friend had to go backwards down the cables, because her knees are bad and she had brace on one. She felt that it was easier to lean into the mountain and look down at her legs for the next purchase of rock while she was grabbing onto one side of the rope. However, I felt that I had more control facing outwards just like walking downstairs. Both of my hands were on both cables and I clenched and unclenched my fists to lower myself down with my legs and let gravity help as I got to each wood block at the stanchions. My backpack was still quite heavy from water, and I felt better balanced that way.


I recommend:

5-6L of water unless you have a filtration system to get water at the last water area before the Dome

BRIGHT Headlamp - I got a cheap one with the highest reviews on Amazon for $26

Hiking poles - They saved me coming down. I didn't order early enough on Amazon, but my Amazon ones were $25. I had to buy Black Diamond for like $100. They aren't for everyone, but I almost slipped on the rock stairs coming down the last few miles over 10 times and they helped. My arms, back, and chest are sore, but at least I didn't break anything.

Hiking shoes with treads - Oboz. I bought them new and didn't even have to break them in; I saw someone going up the cables in skater shoes and feared for his life. He couldn't even stand after 5 stancions and I told him he should go back down.

Gloves - You need ones for the cables. Some people use those thick garden gloves form Home Depot, cheaper than rock climbing gloves. Please don't leave them at subdome "for people to use." The rangers ask us not to. If you want to give your gloves away, just ask people you pass going backwards if they want some. My friend did and a stranger gratefully accepted.

Snacks - Clif Gels/Gu/Honey Stingers. Salt tabs, electrolyte tabs, a bottle of gatorade if you don't have that to sip on during the trip. (You nee to have equal water and electrolyte intake. Do not just bring all gatorade. You will dehydrate faster.) Make sure to bring a protein and carb filled snack for every hour. You WILL NOT make it without this.

Pickle Juice - THE BRAND not just the stuff in the pickle jar - I recommend this for cramps. It saved me and my friends. Maybe 2-3 small bottles for each person. They are really cheap and they work wonders. Drink before the hike to prevent cramps, but honestly, they can take cramps away during an onset too within a few minutes.

Layers of clothing - check the weather, but my feather down vest was a great help, along with my sun shaded hat to protect the back of my neck

Hand Warmers - trust me, this rocked for the beginning and end of my hike

Harness + gigantic caribiner - I saw several people have this and it made me wish I had this for peace of mind. Safety net going up and down, but you need to figure out if your gloves are easy enough to use with them while you hook and unhook each time you meet a stanchion pole WHILE you hold/balance your body.

Phone, Go Pro, external battery - some people get signal (I didn't), but your camera is so worth this view. Sometimes phones will die rather quickly on this hike, so have a backup battery. Pictures to remember the feeling of triumph!

Driven by countless times on my way to bigger hikes. So, today i stopped. Probably not the best place to go to see the Sequoias, but it has some interesting history about the road. Highlight is the hollowed out fallen tree you can climb through.

Nice trail about 1 mile one way, lots of rocks to walk around at some parts and the last .2 miles is a steep hike up the side of the dome. Definitely worth it, the view from the top is incredible.

walking
5 days ago

Easy walk on a paved walkway that ends with an amazing view

backpacking
5 days ago

Totally blown away by the views from the meadow to the top of the pass. This was fairly difficult for my second backpacking trip but it was well worth it.

on Half Dome Trail

5 days ago

Scary, long but totally amazing!!!!

This is a fairly easy hike with 360 views at the top. Great view of the valley and falls. I know there are many quality hikes at Yosemite, but the payback for reasonable effort is outstanding.

Hike of a lifetime! My best backpacking experience so far.
We didn't resupply during our trip and it made the first few days extremely difficult, until our packs got a bit lighter - think about it twice before you commit to the fully autonomous mode! Also make sure you have a plan B in case your water filter breaks on day 2... but we were lucky and none of us got sick even after drinking unfiltered water from rivers and lakes for two weeks.

backpacking
6 days ago

Ideal backpacking trip if you want to take first-timers with you! It was surprisingly cold (October 6th) but seeing the lake surrounded by fresh snow was magical.

hiking
6 days ago

Half Dome is worth doing. I work out 2/3 days a week and didn't get in as many prep hikes as I had planned. I mainly walked my dogs 2 times a week for 3 miles at a time for about a month. I wish I had prepped properly. BUT I would still do this hike even though I am not as fit as I would like to have been. I went October 5th. Weather was great and the path was not overly crowded. We started at 8am because it rained the day before and we wanted to be sure the dome would be dry when we got there. In hindsight I would have gone up at 6am as originally planned. Total time took 14 hours from happy isles. The shortest version of this hike is up and down the vernal route which is over 16 miles round trip, not sure why all trails says this hike is 14 miles. If you get stuck in the dark coming down and went up the mist trail take the mist trail, it's better to go out the way you returned. It would be too much work to take muir trail out in the dark if you aren't familiar with the route. There were people on the mist trail in the dark and they got confused on the trail down between Nevada falls down to Vernal falls. Don't just follow people on the way out they may get you off track. Pay attention to the trail and don't veer off just because others do and you should be fine. If you plan to take the mist trail down poles will help you a lot. I took 3 liters of water which was a good amount I had a water filter just in case, but didn't need it. In the summer a filter might be a good idea so you can lighten your load. Pack light!!! You will be happy you did. Must haves head lamp, painkillers, bandaids, shoes with grip, gloves that cover your fingers and have good grip, and good snacks. Have patience and take breaks you need on the way up, it is the hike of perpetual almost there. I hated going up Vernal but going down Nevada sucked as well because the steps down slope a bit which isn't the best for your balance. The steps on the subdome can be frustrating but once you finish the subdome the cables don't seem so bad. Just take your time going up the cables and yes facing half dome going down the cables is the best way to go down. Be nice to your fellow hikers we're all in this together.

you will experience different environment every 2 miles on the way to ten lakes. enjoy!

fun little hike with lots of switchbacks and decent shade. beautiful views.

This is actually my favorite hike in Yosemite. Most of the trail has a decent incline, but there is one section right before you reach the dome that is pretty steep. Once you are at the dome, climb the rocks to the top and you are rewarded with an outstanding view of Yosemite Valley, half dome and the Sierra Mountain range. It is beautiful. I prefer to do this one in the fall since the tourists are mostly gone, but even with the tourists in the summer, it is worth the hike. Make sure to bring enough water as Yosemite is very hot in the summer months. Also, I wore hiking boots and was glad when I was coming down. There are lots of loose gravel and slick granite to lose your balance on. If you are visiting, I would make this a must!

The views from this trail are phenomenal! The trail is definitely not an easy one though. There are numerous switch backs and loose rocks. Since it is more challenging, the trail is not packed, but you will see a fair number of hikers. Also, Yosemite is usually very hot in the summer months, so make sure to bring extra water. If you are continuing onto upper Yosemite falls this is a perfect spot to take in the views and have a snack.

Great hike with 360 views at the top. I have done Clouds Rest from Happy Isles and this trail is a bit easier. It’s hard but not as strenuous as Half Dome. 7-8 hours for almost 15 miles.

Great hike. Lakes are beautiful. It was very windy at the first, second and third lake. Great in the summer

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