Emily Schrick

One of the best Peninsula hikes

Starting from the parking lot on portola rd. and heading up the Spring Ridge trail via the Betsy Crowder trail to Windy Hill is such a great workout, and offers great views of the rolling hills of the preserve. Going after a rain is the best - all of the grass is green, but be careful if descending via the Hamms gulch or lost trail - they'll be muddy & slippery!

Amazing Hike

Following the powerful Tuolumne River for a good amount of this hike is awe-inspiring (especially after this winter). The waterfalls were raging and you could feel the power of the river standing on the footbridges. We had to camp away from the backpacker's camp since the footbridge was washed away, but this spot would make an awesome camp spot if you wade across or wait until the bridge is fixed!

over 2 years ago

Simply amazing

Added a Cloud's Rest detour to our high sierra backpacking loop this summer, and it was easily one of the best days on trail! I couldn't wait for the view at the summit, but the actual hike is simply gorgeous as well! Of course, the views from the top were just amazing. Seeing Half Dome from a unique angle, catching a glimpse of Tenaya Lake in the distance, looking at the mountains we had been hiking through from way above. Just incredible. There are lots of camping spots once you get above the treeline. We camped about 3/4 mile south of the summit in a huge flat spot off the trail - and were even blessed with a black bear sighting the next morning. Couldn't recommend this more as a day hike or backpack.

over 2 years ago

Heavy snow year = awesome summer views

We backpacked in to May Lake from Glen Aulin at the end of July, and there was still tons of snow around the lake, on Mount Hoffmann, and half of the lake was still frozen! So beautiful. And we saw a few marmots scurrying around :) This place can get crowded though! There were lots of backpacking groups, I can't even imagine how busy this place would be if the high sierra camps were open! But that's to be expected since its so close to Tioga Road.

Lots nearby

Tuolumne Meadows seems very spread out, and it is, but this campground is the perfect spot for a basecamp (especially loops A&B): you're close to Tioga Road, so you can easily be in the meadows in a few minutes, and the walk to the Lembert Dome/ Glen Aulin/ Cathedral Lakes/ JMT trailheads are at most a 1 mile flat walk away, and the trail to Elizabeth Lake starts at the back of Loop B! Campers seem more relaxed and chill up here too, not as party-ready like in Yosemite Valley. Highly recommend spending time at Tuolumne Meadows!

Wildlife!

We rented Polynesian style canoes from Catch a Canoe. Wonderful people at that shop, highly recommend renting from them and getting the outrigger canoes! The river was absolutely gorgeous, we saw a seal, 4 river otters, and tons of birds! This is such a great half-day activity in Mendocino, and a must-do if you're in the area!

Go Early!

This hike is absolutely beautiful! Went this morning (saturday of memorial day weekend) and was the first car in the lot (7:00am). My pup and I had the whole trail down to ourselves! The morning light with the hills and river is stunning. As others have mentioned, definitely bring plenty of water, especially if going mid-day (or bring a water filter since you'll be able to filter at the river). I was also pleasantly surprised how clean and free of litter this trail is given its popularity! Keep up the good LNT work everyone!!

Great Workout

Did this loop in reverse from the skyline parking lot and the way back up really gives your legs (and lungs) a good workout. I agree with a previous reviewer, this loop is probably more intermediate, but it's doable for a beginner if you remember to bring water and take your time. Great wildlife as well! Saw many banana slugs, lizards, and even a newt and snake on trail (so watch your step)!

Great Scenery

I did a little bit different of a loop that was 7.75 miles with 2,050 ft net evelation gain: cataract trail-Simmons-Benstein-Kent-Helen Markt-cataract. Very pretty and lunch at alpine lake is a must! This weekend (3/11/17) the trails were nice and dry from the beautiful weather we've had but the falls are full from all the prior rain!

Stunning!

Took the Meadow route last weekend and it was great! I definitely recommend having a little bit of snowshoeing experience before embarking. Unfortunately the views of the valley were nonexistent when I went due to heavy fog but the hike was beautiful nonetheless!

Nice views

Pretty easy hike for some nice views! The elevation gain is more like only 300 feet if you just do an out-and-back to Wildcat peak from Inspiration point. You can also make this a much longer loop by following the Wildcat peak trail down into the Nature area and take the Meadows Canyon Trail back to your car, but this is where all the crowds are on the weekend, so I'd stay away from that area if you want some solitude.

Good workout, good views

I made this into a little shorter of a loop by taking out the Goat Trail purely for lack of time - can't wait to go back to camp & explore more! The Ano Nuevo trail is beautiful. Returning on the Olmo fire road is pretty nice except for the very noticeable power lines! I'd rate this as a little more intermediate just because of the ~800 ft of elevation gain in less than 1 mile at the very beginning of the Ano Nuevo trail. Overall, I'd highly recommend! Only saw about 5 people on the trails, and it was the weekend!

Great pit-stops

These waterfalls are great leg-stretchers on your way into the Longmire/ Paradise area. Well worth the stop & short hike before or after a longer outing

Beautiful Hike

Highly recommend this in the fall too! Beautiful colors, and wouldn't be too bad with a little snow on the ground. Definitely make the detour to Bench lake and walk counter-clockwise to see some awesome reflections of Mt. Rainier in the lake! This is such an easy day hike to add to a day of exploring in the Paradise area!

about 4 years ago

Good Training Hike

This hike recommended by a few REI workers to do for Half Dome training. They were right! If you've done upper Yosemite falls trail, this will be slightly easier, but it's still about the same elevation gain in the same mileage. This hike isn't too exciting, but the cows are cool and the views from the peak are pretty great. For half dome training--it's recommended to do this hike (from Stanford entrance) twice in a row to get the best half dome workout. Happy hiking!

5 Star Views

The views from this trail are simply amazing! Be sure to leave early in the morning, the last 1.5 miles is pretty exposed so you don't want to do it in the beating sun! Not sure about the "natural swimming pool" suggestion... There is definitely NOT a safe space to swim in above the falls. NPS makes it pretty clear that you should never swim in the waters above any of the waterfalls in the park. But definitely continue another 1 mile to Yosemite point for even more amazing views of Half Dome and the valley!

Great, easy valley stroll

Mirror lake is a great hike to do early in the morning, as there are significantly less people, and the walk is shaded, but the rock formations up above are beaming in the sun. Try to get there before 8 AM! There are 2 options to get to Mirror Lake. If you want to take the paved route, always stay to the left & cross Tenaya bridge! Don't take the sandy path to the right. Officially, the NPS calculates 5 miles for the full loop, so plan accordingly!

Not overrated

Despite being one of the most popular & crowded hikes in Yosemite Valley, it is SO worth it. If you want to avoid traffic, leave Happy Isles by 8 am, and take the John Muir Trail on the way down. JMT back is the way to go. You'll get awesome views of the valley, Nevada fall, the backside of Half Dome, and Liberty Cap, and you won't run into many people until you get back to the Vernal Fall footbridge. As everyone else has stated, this hike is absolutely gorgeous, and you definitely have to do it, especially if you have dreams of completing other difficult hikes in Yosemite, like upper Yosemite falls, four mile trail, snow creek trail, half dome, and clouds rest!

Tons of trails!

You can choose to hike all day or just get a quick 1 hour jaunt in! I recommend the easy 2.6 mile loop starting from the park entrance. Take the Edgewood trail to the Serpentine trail to Baywood Glen to Sylvan, back to the entrance. You'll pass through many ecosystems and have a beautiful view overlooking highway 280 and the vast meadow at the edgewood-serpentine junction. Be sure to bring sunscreen as part of the trail is exposed, and a windbreaker because it can get incredibly windy!

Road Closed :(

Unfortunately the road (Fairfax-Bolinas Rd) is closed from W Ridgecrest Blvd. I'm not sure if the road is open approaching the trailhead from the east (driving through San Rafael & Fairfax) but as of 4/10/16 its your best bet for getting here!

Great beginner snowshoe

My family went out here for our first snowshoe ever! It was great. No elevation gain, relatively flat, perfect for beginners. We brought the dogs along after getting the OK from the rangers. Seem to be more relaxed about dogs in the winter time! Highly recommend for a nice winter afternoon.

Absolutely amazing!

Came here in the midst of California's drought, and let me tell you, you would have no idea we were in the middle of a 4 year drought by looking at the falls! They were flowing in full force! Can't even imagine how beautiful they'll be this summer when all the snow melts! p.s. the falls pictured are definitely Burney Falls, contrary to an earlier review.

Becoming more popular

Such a beautiful sight to see! It is hard to miss driving up since the cypress trees come out of nowhere! Unfortunately there were many cars parked right at the entrance gate in-between trees, which made photographing the trees facing away from the radio station virtually impossible. I'd definitely recommend heading here on a weekday for sunrise/ sunset to shoot if you don't want much company.

A Valley must-see

Even if you've been to Yosemite many times, this view will never get old. Really puts the whole valley into perspective, especially if you've been sight-seeing on the valley floor all day. The best time for photography will be towards the end of the day, but if you're not looking for a money shot, come at any time!