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Re: April Hikes

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April Hikes
March 31, 2008 02:40PM
Hello All,

I'm bringing some extended family to Yosemite from April 20th to 23rd. They are up for doing day hikes in the 6 mile range (give or take a mile or two). Just wanted to get some people's opinions on some good hikes that I might want to plan.

I've floated the idea of bringing them on the Yosemite Falls trail and/or the Mist Trail. Will the Mist Trail be fully open by that time in April? I realize that much of this depends on what type of weather April has in store for us.

Thanks for your help!

-B.G.

avatar Re: April Hikes
March 31, 2008 05:43PM
The Mist Trail will still be closed. But you can take the JMT to Clark Point and then down to the top of Vernal.

View from Clark Point:



avatar Re: April Hikes
March 31, 2008 06:15PM
bgreen414 wrote:

> Hello All,
>
> I'm bringing some extended family to Yosemite from April 20th
> to 23rd. They are up for doing day hikes in the 6 mile range
> (give or take a mile or two). Just wanted to get some people's
> opinions on some good hikes that I might want to plan.
>
> I've floated the idea of bringing them on the Yosemite Falls
> trail and/or the Mist Trail. Will the Mist Trail be fully open
> by that time in April? I realize that much of this depends on
> what type of weather April has in store for us.

I did the Upper Yosemite Fall hike in Feb 2007. Snow on the trail. Gorgeous day. I made it to the bridge over Yosemite Creek and turned back since it was getting late. I tried it in Dec 2005 in spring-like conditions (mid-50's but raining) and turned back for a number of reasons. It's great, and you don't have to go all the way to the top if you don't feel like it. Up to Columbia Rock (you'll see a railing) seems to be a popular turn-around point. I remember hearing a kid all gung-ho about making it to the top. Well - I turned around a little over the halfway point and never saw him or his family; they must have turned around. Probably a good thing, as dad was wearing poor gripping casual shoes. There are some great views from the trail, although I'd expect there might be a little bit of snow there depending on elevation and location. There's some poor footing and some of the granite is a bit slick if wet, so good hiking boots with ankle support are recommended.

Here's one I took from about two-thirds up the trail. By late April I'd expect less snow, although it's been a pretty good snow year.



And views of/from the bridge. I don't think it'll be like this, but you never know.



Re: April Hikes
March 31, 2008 10:42PM
The hike to Nevada falls by any combination of the Mist and John Muir trail is great, and within your hiking distance. I wouldn't worry about the Mist trail to Vernal being open...if it's not, as suggested go to Clark Point, then down to the Mist trail the rest of the way to Nevada Falls.

There's really no telling whether both trails will be open the entire distance, but the combination of the two is nearly certain to work (called the winter route).
http://www.pbase.com/roberthouse/image/16192190
(Late April...you can see why the trail being open is unpredictable)

Upper Yosemite Falls is a good one, and will likely wear everyone out; it's uphill steadily with many switchbacks; it starts out in shade, which is nice because it's a steady steep climb from the start. Once you get past Columbia Rock to the base of the upper fall, the rest is all bonus, and you can turn around whenever you feel like it and still have a great hike.
http://www.pbase.com/roberthouse/image/68650738
(late April)

If you're looking for a less strenuous one for a day, the loop from Mirror Lake to Snow Creek trail and then back on the other side is a nice one, though not quite as exciting as the falls trails.





Gary
Yosemite Photo Galleries: http://www.pbase.com/roberthouse/yo
avatar Re: April Hikes
April 01, 2008 03:50PM
It's a bit of a drive from the valley floor but the hike out to Wapama Falls at Hetch Hetchy is a good one plus you get to see the dam and lake.





Old Dude
Re: April Hikes
April 02, 2008 11:43AM
Just returned from Yosemite last week. First time there, it was awesome.

I hiked three trail in that range.

1. Mist Trail to Vernal Falls footbridge. Mist trail was closed after footbridge but several people proceeded past fence to get good views of Vernal Falls without having to get to steps area. I personally climbed down to a large rock just after bridge to get a good view and pictures. Took about an hour to get to footbridge. I did continue up John Muir Trail about another 1/4 mile but then the trail was snowed in and those coming from top said it was more difficult so did not proceed to Clark's Point.

2. Upper Yosemite Trail. Was like a 4 hour stairmaster!! More strenuous, but awesome views. Great view of the valley from Columbia Point. Proceeded past Columbia point to several great views of the Upper Falls. I turned around at the point where I was told "this is the last view of the Falls" and the rest is switchbacks to the top.
Total time was 2hr 40min up and 1hr 10min down. Stopped at Columbia for lunch.

3. Mariposa Grove. Hiked the road to the Mariposa Grove to see the Giant Sequoias. Road may be open by the time you are there.

If not there is a two mile hike up road to opening of Grove. Then another 0.8 miles in to get some views of several very large trees!! You could proceed another 1.5miles to see the rest but I did not. Overall this was an easier hike, except for the fact that my knees were killing me as it was the last of the three.

If you are staying in the valley and coming in from the south on 41, you may want to plan seeing this either the day you come in or the day you leave. It is a 45min. drive each way from the valley otherwise. Well worth the views though.

Enjoy, I did.

Matt
Re: April Hikes
April 06, 2008 10:23AM
Thanks to all that replied for the suggestions/information --- I really appreciate it!

Just a few more questions:

1. Mariposa Grove -- Will the road still be closed by the third week in April? If so, will walking the road entail hiking through a lot of snow?

2. Muir Trail -- I hiked this a few years back and forget if there's a view of Vernal Falls (besides the one from the footbridge).

3. Inspiration Point -- I've never taken the time to hike this trail -- is the route up to Stanford Point a good one?


Thanks again for all your help (and the pictures/links are great, too).
Re: April Hikes
April 07, 2008 11:09AM
bgreen414 wrote:

> 1. Mariposa Grove -- Will the road still be closed by the third
> week in April? If so, will walking the road entail hiking
> through a lot of snow?

Not sure - it depends on the snow amount and whether it gets plowed. I would not count on it. Hiking on the road at this point in time should not be bad - it is a gentle grade and the snow will probably be mostly, if not all, gone or packed. Once at the parking lot, it is well worth the walk up to the Grizzly Giant, a very distinctive and magnificent tree.

> 2. Muir Trail -- I hiked this a few years back and forget if
> there's a view of Vernal Falls (besides the one from the
> footbridge).

Yes! Two major views, one possibly illegal this time of year - continue on Mist Trail past JMT junction, about 400 feet to a very large rock ledge (Princess Anne Rock?) that protrudes out into the river. Magnificent view of the whole fall in a completely majestic setting. Be careful if the rock is snowy or icy; it is even a bit slippery when wet. If you go much beyond this point, the trail becomes quite icy, snowy and dangerous with the massive spray from the waterfall until the weather warms up. Certainly worth checking, though, and keep watching this list for announcements from eeek.

The other view is, as was alluded to above, from Clark's Point. If the Mist Trail is not yet open, you must continue up the JMT to the Clarks' Point Trail junction and go down that trail a bit to a spectacular aerial overlook of Vernal Fall. One can also get Nevada Fall views from this trail, and especially from the JMT not far beyond this point. *Be careful if you proceed beyond the junction on the JMT* (also possibly closed this time of year)! When snow and ice is present, this is one of the most dangerous trails with tall steep cliffs and possible ice/rockfalls.

Good luck, and have fun (it is almost impossible to avoid :-)





Wilderness forever,
Bruce Jensen
Re: April Hikes
April 14, 2008 09:31AM
Mist trail is open
Re: April Hikes
April 14, 2008 09:39PM
Yes, the mist trail is open. There is very little snow on the way up to Nevada Falls. Leaving Little Yosemite Valley toward Half Dome is another story.

I was surprised to meet many people asking if I had climbed Half Dome that morning. I told them all that with the cables down, climbing equipment (and the knowledge of how to use it) was needed. Also the final snowfield which completely covers the stairway is extremely steep. I went to the base of the stairway and turned back.

Here are some pics going toward Half Dome on Saturday April 12. It was a very exceptional warm day. Your mileage may vary.














Mike

avatar Re: April Hikes
April 15, 2008 09:59AM
nice photos Mike!
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