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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Upper Yosemite Fall, CA

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Guide 10 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List CA > Sierra Nevada
5 of 5 by 2
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Difficulty 4 of 5
Distance Round Trip 6.4 miles
Trailhead Elevation 3,987 feet
Elevation Gain 2,716 feet
Accumulated Gain 3,200 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 22.4
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
editedit > ops > dogs to adjust
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
15  2016-05-28 Lucyan
13  2015-08-27 zukerrach
5  2015-07-20 cw50must
41  2012-06-29
The North Rim
20  2011-07-10 uphill_junkie
27  2010-06-07 John9L
19  2010-05-23 Chriskup
Author HAZ_Hikebot
author avatar Guides 16,882
Routes 16,052
Photos 24
Trips 1 map ( 6 miles )
Age 22 Male Gender
Location TrailDEX, HAZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   May, Oct, Jun, Sep
Sun  5:39am - 6:08pm
Official Route
0 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Geology Nearby
Named place Nearby

Likely In-Season!

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This is a moderately difficult hike.

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  • Yosemite Campgrounds
    area related
    Yosemite Campgrounds
  • Yosemite Park Map
    area related
    Yosemite Park Map
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

Most recent Triplog Reviews
Upper Yosemite Fall
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Day 3 in Yosemite-- after much debate, Jared and I decided on the Upper Yosemite Falls. We didn't leave the visitor center until mid-afternoon, and our legs were already pretty sore, so we were definitely cutting it close with the timing; a couple people on our way up even warned us that we didn't really have enough time. We pressed on, and made it to the top before our set cut-off time. The falls were entirely dry, but we were surprised to find small pools at the top! We enjoyed our dinner in quiet peace, looking down on the valley below as the mountains lit up. About the last third of the descent was in the relative dark, but the moon lit our way. :)
Upper Yosemite Fall
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My last day in Yosemite. It's been a heck of a trip! I've already hiked close to 50 miles and I know I'm near my limit. I was seriously considering spending the day relaxing but I could not resist the call of North Dome. The Dome looms over Curry Village. It's one of the last areas of Yosemite Valley I have not been.

My plan: I would pay the $11.50 for a 8am bus ride on the Tuolumne Hikers Express shuttle. I was lucky to get a seat because it was originally sold out. I double checked later in the day and picked up the one remaining seat for a cancelled reservation. The shuttle would drop me off at Porcupine Creek and I would hike down to North Dome. My original plan was to retrace my steps from North Dome and then connect to the Snow Creek Trail which would lead me down to Mirror Lake and back to Curry Village. I changed my plan and headed west on the North Rim Trail and made my way down the Upper Yosemite Falls Trail. This was a hard decision!

I arrived at the shuttle at 8am and I was ready to hike! The bus was very slow going with a stop at Yosemite Lodge and another stop at Crane Flat for a bathroom break. I got off the bus and started hiking at 10:15am. This is late for me! After stepping off the bus I gear up and prepare myself for the hike. To be honest I was dead tired and almost regretted riding the bus. I had to dig deep for this one!

The first few miles of the North Dome Trail lead down a gentle grade through the forest. There are no views for a while. Eventually the trail starts to head uphill and the views start to open up. One of the first things I see is Clouds Rest. I continued on and views into Yosemite Valley open up as well. Half Dome then comes into view and really grabs your attention. It is one hell of a large piece of granite! Finally my goal North Dome comes into focus. It looks a lot different from up here! The trail makes a slight turn to the left and then hooks back toward the summit. You follow the granite and find yourself at the end in few minutes.

By this time I've been seeing epic views for six days! I'm kind of getting numb to them. I have to pinch myself to remind me where I am and what I'm doing. There is no where else on earth I'd rather be then right here. From North Dome, Half Dome looms straight ahead. Clouds Rest rises to the east and Basket Dome looks inviting as well. It's similar to North Dome. To the west is the top of El Capitan and Yosemite Falls trail. I wish I could spend eternity right here.

Time is wasting so I started my return. At this point I changed my plan to head for the Upper Yosemite Falls trail. I'm really slogging at this point and I want the easiest and quickest way back to the valley floor. The Snow Creek Tail is longer and more isolated. I also can't resist hiking past falls...they are spectacular.

I left North Dome and headed west on the North Rim Trail. This trail is easy to follow as you head into the forest and away from the edge. I followed this for roughly three miles and only saw one other hiker. There were a couple of nice creeks that I used to splash some water in my face and soak my bandana. This helped rejuvenate me! I continued on and the trail lead out of the forest to Yosemite Point. This is another epic view! I continued and dropped down near the bridge above Upper Yosemite Falls. The water was flowing very low compared to my trip here two years ago.

On the way down I made a quick detour to the top of the falls. There were a bunch of people. I walked up and took my pics and then headed out. It was around 2pm and I wanted to get back. I hit the trail and cruised down stopping quickly for a pic here and there. Several groups asked me how much further to the top. I could not give them a good answer. After an hour or so I reached the valley floor and was back at Curry Village shortly afterward.

This has been the trip of a lifetime for me. Everything came together and I accomplished all of my hiking goals and then some! I finished with roughly 63 miles and 14,500 feet of gain over six full days. By the end, the sun and dehydration were a constant threat. This was not easy. The hiking began to feel like a job. I needed a break was happy to return to Phoenix. All good things come to an end.

Parting words, Yosemite and the Sierras are heaven on earth for me. I miss them already! I shall return!
Upper Yosemite Fall
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This was my second trip to Yosemite. I made a day trip back in October and knew I'd be back! I originally planned on hiking Half Dome but the trail was still listed as closed so I decided to do two medium length hikes. I chose Upper Yosemite Falls and the Mist Trail.

I stayed at Curry Village and rode the bus over to Camp 4. I chatted it up with several folks on the beginning switchbacks and really enjoyed the shade. Eventually the trail leveled off and you work your way towards the falls. The views are amazing along the way! Half Dome looms in the distance! And Sentinel Dome and Sentinel Falls lie directly across the valley.

The strange thing is you know Yosemite Falls is right around the corner but you can't hear it. You work your way and then finally you catch the hum of the water...and then it gets louder...and then louder! The next thing you know the falls appear and its roaring! You feel the cool air and the mist picks up as you proceed. Your rewarded with a stunningly close view! I took a bunch of pics and then continued up the trail.

After a bit you work your way up and away from the falls. You come to a challenging section with loads of switchbacks. I took my time heading up this. Again the views are amazing the entire way! You can judge the end as you slowly ascend. It feels like it will never come and then you finally see a sign for trail splits...Eagle Point, North Dome, Yosemite Point and Yosemite Falls overlook.

At the top, I started by following the markers to the Yosemite Falls overlook. You arrive to breathtaking views! You can work your way down some rails that take you right to the falls edge. You can really feel the power of the water as it burst over! I took a load of pics and then turned and headed back to the trail markers.

From the markers, I then headed towards Yosemite Point. It was roughly a mile away and featured a modest elevation gain. You cross the creek and then work your way up and then over to Yosemite Point. I asked a few people to make sure I was going the right way. Route finding was straightforward but I wanted to be sure.

Finally arrived at Yosemite Point and felt weak in the knees! The view again is just thrilling! Looking at Half Dome gave me goose bumps! I worked my way over to a nice shade spot and sat down for some lunch. I had to pinch myself to remind me I'm not in a dream...this IS really happening! Places like this do exist!

Unfortunately I couldn't stay up there forever. I slowly made my way back and then down the trail. Heading down was a breeze. I stopped for a handful of pics and found myself back at Camp 4 in no time. I ended up completely draining 3 litres of water on the hike.

To sum up Yosemite Falls is a challenge! To say this is the greatest trail I have ever hiked is a huge understatement! The views! The terrain! The waterfall! It is a work of art! Upper Yosemite Falls is an absolute must for any avid hiker! You will not be disappointed! Keep in mind the water is seasonal. I was out here last October and Yosemite Falls appeared dry from a distance. Go in the spring and early summer.

Permit $$
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Yosemite National Park
Entrance Fees
Wilderness Permit
Half Dome Permit - Currently required 7 days a week. Check the link for the most up to date information.

2014 - 300 permits issued daily, 225 for dayhikers.
2013 - 400 permits issued daily, 300 for dayhikers.

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page created by HAZ_Hikebot on Mar 10 2010 12:39 am
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