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Nevada Falls Loop - 5 members in 11 triplogs have rated this an average 4.6 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Sep 03 2022
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 Guides 2
 Routes 3
 Photos 514
 Triplogs 47

male
 Joined May 07 2019
 Tempe, AZ
Vernal and Nevada Falls Loop, CA 
Vernal and Nevada Falls Loop, CA
 
Hiking avatar Sep 03 2022
mikemcg
Hiking9.92 Miles 2,298 AEG
Hiking9.92 Miles   6 Hrs   37 Mns   2.06 mph
2,298 ft AEG   1 Hour   48 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
We parked in the lot 1 mile away from the trailhead and walked there alongside multiple other groups. Didn't know that there was another parking lot 0.5 miles from the trailhead nor that there was a shuttle from the lots to the trailhead.😕

The first mile of the Mist Trail is a wide asphalt walkway with a mild, steady uphill. We passed numerous other groups along the way. We stopped for a bit at the bridge, then continued the ascent. Now we were on an actual trail, with far fewer people. We never encountered any mist on the trail, which was disappointing on a hot (90°+) day.

There were a number of people relaxing at Vernal Falls, but we still had an unobstructed view. The falls had maybe 1/3 of the flow that it has in the spring, but was still impressive. We climbed on the rocks and descended to the bottom of the falls, where there was some mist. The water was cold but refreshing.

We climbed to the top of the falls and hung out at Emerald Pool, which had far fewer people than the falls (3 small groups). The water there felt great. The squirrels boldly walked right up to us. I put my half-eaten protein bar (still in the wrapper) on a rock for a few seconds to take a picture, which was enough time for a squirrel to grab it, run a short distance, and begin eating. I chased the squirrel in circles for about 10 minutes to get the wrapper back so I could dispose of it properly. The bar was a lost cause.

We proceeded to Nevada Falls, where we saw only one couple at the bottom, who looked pretty hot and exhausted. We gave them water and showed them where Emerald Pool was so they could cool off. We scrambled over toward the base of Nevada Falls, then climbed to the top. It was very beautiful and peaceful up there, with no people, so we admired the views and cooled off at the river. We then headed down the John Muir Trail and looped back toward the trailhead, taking pictures along the way. Definitely going next spring to see the falls at full power! (And bag Half Dome while I'm there.)
Meteorology
Meteorology [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Rainbow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Emerald Pool 51-75% full 51-75% full
Salida Gulch Trail #95 - Bradshaw ...
Salida Gulch Trail #95 - Bradshaw Mountains - Prescott Arizona

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Nevada Fall Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Silver Apron Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Vernal Fall Medium flow Medium flow
1/3 the flow in April/May, still very powerful and impressive
7 archives
Sep 11 2017
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 Guides 1
 Routes 80
 Photos 8,017
 Triplogs 3,067

60 male
 Joined Apr 02 2005
 Mesa, AZ
Half Dome HikeSierra Nevada, CA
Sierra Nevada, CA
Hiking avatar Sep 11 2017
Tortoise_Hiker
Hiking16.34 Miles 5,500 AEG
Hiking16.34 Miles   7 Hrs   52 Mns   2.18 mph
5,500 ft AEG      22 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Bucket list hike. Kelly and I got to the parking lot at 6am. The plan was to hike up Mist Trail and down JMT. I believe Booneman suggested it that way. The temps were pretty good. Clouds not bad. We kept a close eye on the weather for our Safety First attitude. The hike up to Vernal Fall was a good workout especially with the steps. Another good reason to come back the JMT. You get to see a different trail and less steep without the steps. Nice waterfall. Nevada Fall was even bigger with another nice climb to get there. That's the intersection where we will take the JMT back down on our way back. Next you go over a little saddle and drop into Little Yosemite Valley. Very nice area along the Merced River. After a half mile or so you start climbing and wrap around to the Sub Dome. That's a pretty steep one but they have some nice steps and switchbacks. We thought 6am was early but we had already passed at least 50 people to this point. Kelly set a great comfortable pace. Now for the cables! People wise it wasn't a problem. I may have passed one person. Condition wise it was a workout. You really do kind of pull yourself along to each pole/board. Worked for it but what an awesome summit and great views. We hung out taking pics and walking around for a half hour or so. Going down the cables, the amount of people was growing. We found that going down backwards worked a lot better. Kelly went first and would warn me when the steps were coming so I didn't hit a shin. Most people were easy to work around and take turns with. One little jam up towards the bottom but not to bad. I had gloves but didn't use them. I could see where your hands could get friction hot. Then down the Sub Dome steps and the hard stuff was over. The way back down went really good and Kelly's pace was still great. Taking the JMT gives you the best view of Nevada Fall. A mile longer but not as step,no steps, and less people. Throw in the brief Bear sighting and it was a great way to finish. We got one more nice pic of Half Dome from a great vantage point between the trailhaed and our room. We don't usually splurge on these trips buttt. Kelly bought dinner and dessert at Yosemite Valley Lodge food court then we stayed the night at the lodge. A hot shower and soft bed just might relax us enough to do one more good hike on the way home tomorrow :o ! Awesome hike and Kelly helped make this go so smoothly! Much appreciated!! Like Haz, Kelly :yr: !
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Tortoise Hiking. Stop and smell the Petrichor.
3 archives
Jul 21 2015
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 Guides 11
 Routes 2
 Photos 3,622
 Triplogs 316

45 male
 Joined Jun 09 2009
 Mesa, AZ
Nevada Falls LoopSierra Nevada, CA
Sierra Nevada, CA
Hiking avatar Jul 21 2015
cw50must
Hiking8.05 Miles 2,140 AEG
Hiking8.05 Miles
2,140 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
When we were looking through the ours books deciding on Yosemite Hikes, I read, if you only have time to do one thing in Yosemite, make it the hike up to Nevada Falls. I feel like that was a very true statement. We did this hike as the recommended lollipop loop, starting out on the vernal falls trail which turns into the Mist trail, then continueing on up to Nevada falls, crossing the Merced river, and return via the John Muir trail until it connects up with the vernal falls trail again to return on. We stayed in Camp Curry so this hike is very convienant to that location. The hike up to Vernal falls is paved, and crowded, very crowded. On the return trip this section was insanely crowded, I did not expect this level of people. It thins out on the Mist trail, but still a good amount of people up to the top of Vernal Falls. Now from Vernal falls up to Nevada falls we had a very nice experience. Its alos nice to hear the crash of the falls as you go up the switch backs. once at top you get to some intersections with some of the longer trails John Muir, panarama, etc... its fun to see the backpackers go by. At the top of the fall is the perfect place to chill. The hike back down John Muir is cool too, to have a nice view of Liberty Cap and the Fall most of the way. We definately enjoyed this hike and considered it to be the best hike of our trip, this is also the perfect length for a nice day hike for me. Should also note that we timed this perfectly as it started thundering and pouring down rain just as we got back to Curry Village.

https://youtube.com ... fvak

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Emerald Pool 51-75% full 51-75% full

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Illilouette Creek Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Nevada Fall Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Silver Apron Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Vernal Fall Medium flow Medium flow
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1 archive
Jul 31 2013
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 Routes 1
 Triplogs 76

37 male
 Joined Nov 29 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Nevada Falls LoopSierra Nevada, CA
Sierra Nevada, CA
Hiking avatar Jul 31 2013
jdnevi
Hiking8.05 Miles 2,140 AEG
Hiking8.05 Miles   5 Hrs      1.61 mph
2,140 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
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Jul 21 2013
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 Guides 84
 Routes 694
 Photos 17,477
 Triplogs 1,702

49 male
 Joined Sep 18 2002
 Tempe, AZ
Sunrise Creek Loop, CA 
Sunrise Creek Loop, CA
 
Hiking avatar Jul 21 2013
chumley
Hiking14.22 Miles 5,067 AEG
Hiking14.22 Miles   7 Hrs   40 Mns   1.85 mph
5,067 ft AEG
 
1st trip
We originally were going to hike the first day with 9L and then spend a couple of nights in LYV including day hikes to half dome and clouds rest, but all good plans change.

In the end we opted for a single overnight, hiking up to Sunrise Junction, bagging half dome the next morning, and heading back out later in the afternoon. It turned out to be a great plan. The area as Sunrise Junction has at least 10 different camp spots, and while we were undisturbed, several of our nearby neighbors reported bears in camp overnight, including a mom and two cubs who batted around some cannisters for a while.

There's perennial water here in a very cold stream. My feet went numb in pain after not more than 30 seconds submerged. It's a grind to get up there with a full pack, even though it's only 7 miles or so, the elevation gain really gets to you.

The hike up we went via the Mist Trail, and on the way down we endured the 227 switchbacks on the JMT. I prefer the steep stairs on Mist vs the switchbacks, but I know that others disagree with my preference.

If you can get the permits, this hike is a great way to access half dome, and if you have the time and feel up to it, it's an "easy" day hike to clouds rest from here too!
Culture
Culture [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Camp-fire Campsite
Meteorology
Meteorology [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Sunset

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Half Dome Spring Dripping Dripping
Moist ground and small pools of enough water to filter.
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two scoops!
Jul 21 2013
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 Guides 8
 Routes 4
 Photos 1,845
 Triplogs 649

36 female
 Joined Dec 02 2009
 Grand Canyon
Sunrise Creek Loop, CA 
Sunrise Creek Loop, CA
 
Hiking avatar Jul 21 2013
Hippy
Hiking14.22 Miles 5,067 AEG
Hiking14.22 Miles   7 Hrs   40 Mns   1.85 mph
5,067 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
I may have hiked this but I don't remember I was too busy :tt: :bdh: :pk: :yuck: ](*,) :pk: :zzz:

I do recall a million stairs, steps, giant granite cobblestone looking slabs of doom...

At one point Chumley and I discussed a pool of blood we found in the water well below the trail...he's so morbid ;)

The views were lovely, the waterfalls were neat, we didn't get drenched, more stairs... :tt:

Somewhere along the first 7 miles up I realized I was getting sick...and running low on water...and was sick n tired up going up up up!!!

Seriously steeper than any of the usual trails at the GC...I'd compare the steps :tt: to Hermit but the entire trail is more like that first steep chunk of Grandview... except for seven...whole...miles... :sk:
Maybe I'm biased simply due to the strep throat draining my body of any energy which in turn sapped the life out of my enthusiastic mind...

Ya know...it really wasn't that bad. The company was great, couldn't ask for better hiking buddies, the weather was PERFECT, the scenery was downright lovely, it was a perfect vacation and I think I fell in love.
Granted I'd never want to LIVE at Yosemite... but I definitely love the area.

The hike down wasn't bad, I was waaaay sicker but going down is the easy part, I breezed along with my shame poles too.

Yea, I'd do it all again next year if I had to...minus the strep! : rambo :
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Canyon Freak Adventures!
May 28 2013
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 Routes 29
 Photos 1,548
 Triplogs 1,802

46 male
 Joined Jan 25 2009
 Phoenix, AZ
Yosemite valley to Merced Lake, CA 
Yosemite valley to Merced Lake, CA
 
Backpack avatar May 28 2013
Dave1
Backpack31.31 Miles 8,080 AEG
Backpack31.31 Miles3 Days         
8,080 ft AEG45 LBS Pack
 
no photosets
1st trip
My wife and I got lucky and scored a last minute walk up, 2-day permit from Happy Isles, including Half Dome. Also got a campsite at Upper Pines. Unheard of on Memorial Day Weekend!

Day 1:Got a late start due to early morning rain showers. Started from our campsite in Upper Pines, short walk to Happy Isles, up the Mist Trail and then up to Vernal Falls overlook. The trail was insanely crowded of course. Still an awesome hike though. Tons of water! Did get a little wet on the Mist Trail as it is like a steady rain shower. After Vernal Fall the crowds thinned out considerably. Slowly made our way up to Half Dome. Arrived at the HD cables at 5pm with just a few people coming down. Unfortunately there was a huge dark cloud moving towards HD. With all the lightning warnings, including a sign right at the cables, we decided to play it safe and not continue. I did go up the cables about 1/3 of the way just to check it out. Very scary! When we got back down below Sub Dome the clouds had moved far away. Oh well.

The permit specified that we camp at least 2 miles past Little Yosemite Valley. One of us was a bit tired and cranky from hiking 12 miles on the first day so that last push to get to a legal campsite was tough. Found a good spot far off the trail on a granite slab with a nice view of Half Dome. Used a pre-existing fire ring to have a cheery little campfire before bed. Also had to burn some trash because we couldn't fit everything into the bear canister. No bugs out tonight!

Day 2:Went to bed with a clear sky but woke up around 3am to rain. Showers off and on until about 10am. Glad we put the tent fly on. Amazingly we were able to get a cell signal way out here. Called my dad back on the east coast for a weather report. No more rain forecasted for the next two days so we decide to push on to Merced Lake.

Continued on the John Muir Trail until the turn off for Merced lake. The trail only gets better. Nice, thick forested sections with clear running creeks and then opening up to granite slabs with awesome views of the surrounding peaks. The mosquitoes did make an appearance around the trees but as long as we kept moving they weren't a problem. Saw two bear cubs in a small meadow as we neared Merced Lake but they were too fast to get pics. The last couple of miles to the lake follows along side the mighty Merced River, with its many short water falls. The water is so powerful here, you'd be crazy to go in it. We had a few dear follow us for a short distance in this part. They are even less afraid of people here than at Grand Canyon! Had lunch at the lake and then continued back towards Little Yosemite Valley, using the lower trail through Echo and Lost Vallies, to find our campsite for the night. About 11 miles for today.

Day 3:Woke up early at our site overlooking the Merced River. Great spot and another night without any bear issues. No rain this time and we slept with the fly off. The rest of the hike was pretty much down an easy grade, then flat, and then steeply down hill. With just 8 miles back to Happy Isles, this would be the easiest day. The trail continues to follow the Merced through the open granite slabs where it cascades down many falls. As the trail levels out and goes through some more thick forests, the Merced becomes more docile and lazy. Back to the crowds as we near Nevada Fall. Then down the steep Mist Trail. Surprisingly the granite steps provide plenty of grip even soaking wet. Kinda sad to finish this one, could spend a few more days here. This was an awesome hike, every minute of it. Can't wait to get back!
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Jul 22 2011
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 Guides 8
 Routes 19
 Photos 297
 Triplogs 50

73 male
 Joined Oct 06 2011
 Payson, AZ &
Nevada Falls LoopSierra Nevada, CA
Sierra Nevada, CA
Hiking avatar Jul 22 2011
donqcryer
Hiking8.05 Miles 2,140 AEG
Hiking8.05 Miles   5 Hrs      2.01 mph
2,140 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break15 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This is one of the classic Yosemite hikes, all accolades are justified! I did this hike twice this year to witness the record water flows (I was in Yosemite when the 3 people went over Vernal) and have done this hike every year for the last few years. Gone up the Muir to Nevada and back to Vernal and out through Mist and also every other trail combinations - all great! This hike is a MUST if one visits the Valley in Yosemite. If you catch the first shuttle, you will have the trails to yourself!
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Jun 01 2011
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 Guides 8
 Routes 98
 Triplogs 284

42 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Moscow, RU
Nevada Falls LoopSierra Nevada, CA
Sierra Nevada, CA
Hiking avatar Jun 01 2011
AndreyP
Hiking8.00 Miles 2,800 AEG
Hiking8.00 Miles   4 Hrs   10 Mns   1.92 mph
2,800 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Walked around Happy Isles then took Mist Trail up to Vernal and Nevada falls and John Muir trail back. A lot of water in waterfalls, some snow in places. It rained several times during the hikes and at the top of Nevada falls it even snowed. Half Dome cables hadn't been setup yet because of very snowy winter.
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Jun 08 2010
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 Guides 6
 Routes 174
 Photos 5,442
 Triplogs 1,640

male
 Joined Mar 12 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Mist Trail - Yosemite NPSierra Nevada, CA
Sierra Nevada, CA
Hiking avatar Jun 08 2010
John9L
Hiking7.50 Miles 2,800 AEG
Hiking7.50 Miles   3 Hrs   30 Mns   2.14 mph
2,800 ft AEG
 
1st trip
On my third and final day in Yosemite, I hiked up the Mist Trail all the way to Nevada Falls and then headed back down the John Muir Trail. This was my first time on the trail and I was thoroughly impressed! Not one but TWO massive waterfalls!

The water was really flowing due to all the snow melt. Both waterfalls were roaring! I had a very enjoyable and wet hike up to the top of Vernal Falls. From there it was smooth sailing to the top of Nevada. I'll have to come back another time to conquer Half Dome...the cables were still not up when I hiked. :(

This is another must do hike! Keep in mind the water is somewhat tied to the snow melt.
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Jul 11 2008
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 Guides 177
 Routes 247
 Photos 8,616
 Triplogs 1,999

71 male
 Joined Feb 12 2002
 Gold Canyon, AZ
Nevada Falls LoopSierra Nevada, CA
Sierra Nevada, CA
Hiking avatar Jul 11 2008
AZLOT69
Hiking8.05 Miles 2,600 AEG
Hiking8.05 Miles   5 Hrs      1.61 mph
2,600 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
An outstanding hike. I think the majority of people I met were vacationers from other countrys. Big storms after the hike near the end of the day. Rain-hail, monsoon like. Then it got real cold. Motorcycle camp, needless to say was a little muddy-I'm still cleanin up.
Geology
Geology [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Granite
Named place
Named place [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Liberty Cap Nevada Fall
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
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It's best for a man to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open his mouth and remove all doubt.
--Mark Twain
average hiking speed 1.92 mph

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.

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