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

hiking
3 days ago

Beautiful views the whole way, but good lord strap in for a challenging hike. The elevation gain over a 4.6 mile hike is brutal. It’s truly 9.2 miles from the trail head and back. It took us 3 hr up and 2 back. We started at 10a and got to our car at 3:30p . The only downside of this hike is that at the end of it you are with a ton of people who just drove up and are crowding all the viewpoints... so it can feel a little unrewarding. Usually after that strenuous of a hike you weed out a lot of people but that’s not the case for this hike. Remember you can always meet your group at the top or be dropped off to hike back down. This would make the hike challenging but not as treacherous to go both ways. THIS IS REALLY A HARD HIKE, no joke. Overall glacier point is phenomenal and you get some really beautiful views the entire way. And it’s pretty spectacular to come off the mountain and see what you accomplished from the valley floor. So take water, snacks, and good shoes... and take your time to look around when you’re at the flying altitude of eagles.

hiking
11 days ago

Probably one of the most gratifying hikes in Yosemite because of the panoramic views on Glacier point, and stunning views of the valley at every hairpin. In terms of difficulty this is a solid hard. There are steep switchbacks on the way up and slippery gravel on the descent. We took 3 hours up and about 2 down. Started at 930 and back at 430. Had a blast!

hiking
14 days ago

Awesome hike!!! Tons of switchbacks with great rewarding views from glacier point. Ended up being over 9miles 4.6 each way. Hit it early!!

hiking
16 days ago

We hiked up to the glacier point which was a great hike with even greater views !
We had lunch on the beautiful glacier point and hitchhiked back to the village because we don’t like in and out trails that much. It was a perfect day.

18 days ago

amazing hike. took 2h to ascend & 3h to descend. would highly recommend hiking poles on the

I could have been in better shape. Great views of the valley. I would not suggest this for the novice. No special gear needed when it’s dry. No food at summit on October 30th.

my wife and I just got done going up and down. went up at 1145a got there at 245p. stayed up there and enjoyed the views for an hour. headed down, that took about 2 hours on the dot. mosquitoes were waiting for us, but walk fast to the base camp restaurant to refuel. we dont hike hardly at all but first time in Yosemite we wanted a challenge and the thrill of accomplishing this. went through half a gallon of water, sunscreen was a good idea as well. bring snacks for the top!

Bring your hiking poles and hiking shoes!! I brought mine even though I read here that you shouldn’t and I’m glad I did. so many people commented they wish they had poles. This trail is not as bad as upper Yosemite falls. Made it up in 2hrs 20 minutes but it took me longer to Get down probably because I yielded to so many coming up later in the day. Beautiful views for sure. 8am start was perfect.

hiking
1 month ago

I did just the down portion of this hike. I was driven up to glacier point and enjoyed the wonderful view of half dome, north dome, Yosemite falls, and the valley floor. The trail was a strenuous walk down. It’s rocky and can be a bit slippery in spots with sandy rock on top of the “paved portion.” There were great views of El Capitan and the cathedral rocks, as well as Yosemite falls on the decent.

hiking
1 month ago

I did this on 22nd September. Started late around 11:30 AM. Took 4 hours for ascent and 3 hours for decent. Terrain is treacherous, hiking poles don't help well due to uneven grounds. Switchbacks sometimes seem never ending. Yosemite waterfall was dry, so the wall looked plain and dull. The valley view was spectacular but never changing. You will reach a point where you will see half dome and that's more than half way done. Bring plenty of water for one way like 2 liters as at the top you can refill it. Get good shoes with traction as the terrain is slippery due to gravel and sand. Very challenging hike with rewarding views throughout. If you are starting late, please get bug spray as after 5-6 PM, the biting flies won't leave you, I promise. Nevertheless, I will definitely be coming back next April to do the same when the water peak off is high. Can't wait.

22nd September was free national park day and the crowd at glacier point was crazy.

hiking
2 months ago

I would like to come back and do this again, but on a cloudy day. Maybe in October or November. Because of the fires, the air was pretty smoggy and everything looked dry. The falls are all dried out at this time.

I started at 05:45 AM. Two other gentlemen started at the same time. Someone else started at 07:00 AM and he caught up and passed me on the way to the top haha.

Lots of beautiful views and it is fun to see the sun touch everything and then come down to completely different lighting. No surprise, lots of switchbacks, but it is a fun, challenging, enjoyable hike. It took me 3.5 hours to make it to the top and two hours to get back down.

Glacier Point is a madhouse.

I had an amazing experience getting to run into a momma bear and cub on the way back down. She was on trail as I was cantering down, we both scared the life out of each other as I turned the switchback and she was less than 15 feet away. I kept my eyes on them and they watched me as I passed. Pictures are lame, because I wasn't about to be one of those people who gets too close and then dies. I just held my camera in the air and clicked while I backed up. Just wonderful! I hope I never forget that moment.

hiking
2 months ago

This trail is a great trail where you can see all the sites in one long day. It ended up being 18 miles, not 15. We stayed on the same trail as recommended. It was worth it but the description said 15 miles. This hike includes the Vernal Falls, Nevada falls, great panorama views of half dome, and Yosemite valley. At mile 11-12, you hit Glacier Point which is a tourist stop. Great views and a convenience store to stop and get something to eat or drink. The rest of the trip down faces El Capitan and different views then the beginning of the trip. 4 miles straight down and then another two miles to get you back to Half Dome Village, if that’s where you parked.

Short and no amazing views, okay lake. Trail just ends

hiking
2 months ago

Strenuous- best done from the Valley to Glacier Point. Get up early in the morning - switchbacks are difficult, but we are happy we did not do the first half of the climb in the sun! We started at 9am. Bring plenty of water and food. We saw many people not prepared with the right amount of water or shoes.
It took us 3 hours with 2-3 breaks in between to get to the top. About 2-2.5 hours to get down.
Spectacular views at Glacier point and well-worth the hike!

AMAZING views the entire way up and down. It is strenuous for sure but so worth it. Switchbacks almost all the way up.

hiking
2 months ago

got on the trail around 830am and there were only a few other groups on the way up, plus a couple on their way down, so it was nice and quiet, and well shaded. there aren't any particularly steep sections, just lots of switchbacks which was surprisingly enjoyable. the view from the top is awesome but lots of people, and on the way back down it was fairly busy. couldn't get a good look at yosemite falls but vernal and nevada falls can be seen from the top.

2 months ago

This trail is amazing. It offers the best views of The Valley for a day hike. If you want to get the best out of The Valley in a day, start by 9am at The Valley floor and BE PREPARED. Have at least 3 liters of water or more per person and plenty of salty snacks. Make sure to also have lots of sunscreen and copious amounts of bug spray. For a not-so experienced hiker or outdoorsman, I was able to pace myself to be able to make it all the way to Glacier point and back to The Valley floor. Be aware, it’s tough. But undeniably the greatest scenery is from the top at Glacier point, which has restrooms and a mini mart for water and supplies along with souvenirs.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

The view from the top is spectacular, that’s absolutely true. However, this trail is completely unforgiving and 3 solid hours of pain on the way up, and about 2 hours of agony on the way down. I love to hike, consider myself in pretty good shape, but the whole way up you’re going back and forth on steep, punishing switchbacks that never really reward you with a new view; there was a section in the middle of the climb where I lost track of time because the view literally didn’t seem to change for ages, we didn’t seem to be getting any higher, and every time I thought we were almost at the top, another switchback identical to the last, presented itself. We started the hike at 8am and weren’t down till 2:30pm. At 8am, the sun doesn’t hit you at all on the way up which is a real blessing, and we took plenty of water (5 litres for the two of us) and sunscreen for the way down. Later in the day, the flies at the bottom of the trail are really bad, so I suggest to leave early for that alone if not for the sun. At the top there’s a cabin that has a shop and restrooms but that wasn’t opened when we came on a Monday. Yosemite had also closed the access road due to work on the power lines after the fires I think, so usually a bus runs that you can go up to the top in. I’d probably suggest that for other visitors, as this was not a fun hike, and from what I hear, the waterfall ones seem to be more interesting.

hiking
2 months ago

As everyone mentions, the views here are amazing! Standing at the trailhead looking up, it can be very intimidating. I am an occasional hiker is moderate shape and my sister joined me having no hiking experience. Treking poles were a great addition for us that helped tremendously. I was not sure if we would make it to the top since my sister was had not done much hiking. We started at 7:00am and made it to the to by noon. We stopped every now and then to rest the legs and take photos. You start out with great views of the valley entrance and El Cap. Then you slowly work your way around and you begin to see the whole valley. When you finally get to see Half Dome in the distance you know you are over halfway up and it the view alone gives you motivation to keep going. We packed a lunch and ate at the top and then grabbed an ice cream from the shop. They also appeared to have a few different shirts/items in this gift shop that they did not have on the valley floor. The views up top were very rewarding. The hike down was the part that made the legs hurt with being sore from the up hike and now plowing down all our body weight on each step. We met tons of people while we were on the way down and they all asked how close they were. Only one group could we tell them that they were close. DO NOT expect to go up and back in a few hours. You need to be prepared with water/food/proper footwear for this hike. There is no way most of the people we met could have made it up and down before dark. Always pack a flashlight for this reason. There is no bus from the top back down to the bottom. Be prepared and this hike will be one of the best you ever do! For us the hike up was 7am-12noon & the hike down was 1:30pm-4pm.

hiking
2 months ago

Great challenging trail. I would definitely rate this hard due to the constant uphill switchbacks. I just took my time and made it to the top and back down to the shuttle stop in 6 1/2 hours. Total miles 12. I’m 61 so I’m sure younger folks could do it faster. Beautiful views along the trail. Saw deer!

Amazing views of Sentinel, ElCapitan and the valley - must go to Glacier Point for spectacular views of Half Dome and Vernal/Nevada Falls ... and to get water for the way back down. It goes up and up and up - 58 switchbacks (who’s counting?). Definitely get early AM start as most of the up is in the shade. Less experienced climbers should consider taking a bus down from Glacier Point. Bring lots of water and food for the trip - saw lots of folks with cameras and purses and not much else.

hiking
2 months ago

incredible trail with an incredible view, and even more expectacular on the top!

Great trail! Definitely pretty tough with the switchbacks but if you go in the morning you will have shade all the way up. And there are water fountains and a gift shop at the top (glacier point). Absolutely worth every step.

3 months ago

HARD TRAIL!! Nothing but switch backs the entire way but the views make it all worth it! You gain about 3,000 feet in elevation. But the higher you get the more the Yosemite Valley starts to reveal itself. It is such a beautiful hike, but be careful, some areas are slippery ( asphalt and sand/dirt combo).

hiking
3 months ago

Steep but well worth the amazing views all the way up! We arrived around 830 on a weekday in May and were still able to get parking at the trailhead.

hiking
3 months ago

Great day hike with amazing views of Half Dome and the Valley.

hiking
3 months ago

Good hike with nice views along the way up. It was a brutal hike with lots of switch backs that go on forever. In my opinion, if you have already been to glacier point and know the views you get up there, then i would personally skip this hike. We were at glacier point the day before for some sunset photos so when we hiked this the following day, it was obviously the same view at the end of the trail. Still awesome of course but didnt have that nice reward with doing all those switchback on the way up. I have a few photos posted in my IG from the trail and glacier point area as well if you would like a perspective for what you'll see.
@m_packmore

Love itttt. A must.

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