Hike to Mist Falls

Yosemite Roads End Permit Station

Added by Matt Purciel

Hike to one of the largest waterfalls in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. If you only have a day to explore the beauty of Kings Canyon this is the trail to hike. 

The trailhead starts at Roads' End (the end of Hwy 180). Take the Bubbs Creek/Kanawyer Loop Trail and hike east. For the first three miles the trail is relatively flat through an open pine forest. Make sure to look up as there are some great views of the valley. The granite walls on both sides of the river rise a couple thousand feet above the canyon floor, making Kings Canyon feel like an enclosed oasis not unlike Yosemite Valley. After the first mile and a half, the forest get denser and trail begins to gain some elevation.

In about two miles there's the first trail junction, take the trail to your left. The trail becomes narrower but after a brief climb it continues through a pine/cedar forest alongside the rushing woods creek. 

At the third mile the trail begins to climb along some dramatic cascades in the boulder-strewn river, until reaching Mist Falls at mile 4.5. The falls are quite impressive: the river rushes down a steep, smooth granite slope before cascading over a cliff. The giant waterwheel does create a lot of mist which is perfect to cool off after a good hike. I suggest take the trail to the brink of the falls and a get view of the mist and the forest below.

Pack List

  • Good map
  • Mosquito/bug repellent
  • Sunscreen
  • Hiking poles
  • Camera 
Read More

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More




Skill Level:



Spring, Summer, Autumn

Trail Type:



9 Miles

Elev. Gain:

600 Feet




Are we missing something?

Suggest an edit

How to Get There

about 1 month ago

Excellent Stroll Through the Woods

Can't stress enough about wearing bug spray. But be careful, in late summer, the smell may attract bees to you and may be a nuisance. The scenery is beautiful, and the hike is very easy. Especially the first quarter before turning past Buck Peak into Woods Canyon. The rest is a slow climb up the canyon, getting progressively steeper the further you are along the trail. You will see beautiful wetlands, dense forest, meadows, and several cascades before reaching Mist Falls. I really liked the hike, except for when sitting down for lunch, we were swarmed by 20-30 bees. Be careful if you are allergic like I am.

about 1 month ago

Added by Matt Purciel

California native and outdoor enthusiast and who's always in search for the beauty of creation.

More Adventures Nearby

Backpack the Little Five & Big Five Lakes Loop

Yosemite / Sawtooth Trailhead

Day 1: A long, rewarding day. Over the course of 11.5 miles you will complete around 10,000ft of elevation change.

Breanne McNitt
8 Saves

Hike the Shadow of the Giants Trail

Yosemite / Shadow of the Giants Trail

The Shadow of the Giants National Recreation trail is an amazing 1.1 mile self-guided hike through the heart of Nelder Grove.

Dan Deublein
8 Saves

Hike the North Dome Loop via Yosemite Falls Trail

Yosemite / Yosemite Falls/Columbia Rock Trailhead

One of the most challenging and rewarding hikes on the northern rim of Yosemite Valley. This is an alternative to the often crowded Mist, Panorama or 4-Mile Trails.

Matt Purciel
2 Saves