Hikes in the Sierra Nevada Mountains

Below is a collection of trails in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. These hikes are listed from north to south and west to east, but the table may also be sorted alphabetically or by distance to help you pick your next hike. Each trail links to its own report complete with photos, maps, directions, and all the other information needed to locate and enjoy these trails. An interpretive map is also provided.

Highlights of the Sierra Nevada

  • This fun 2-mile hike visits a limestone tunnel (that you can swim through) in a creek in Calaveras County.
  • This 5-mile hike tours a flooded valley to a thundering waterfall in the northwest corner of Yosemite National Park.
  • This 1.8 to 6.5-mile hike follows an exciting trail up the Merced River to Vernal Fall and Nevada Fall, two of Yosemite National Park's prize waterfalls.
  • This 10-mile hike travels from Glacier Point down to Yosemite Valley in the most scenic way possible, ending with the Mist Trail.
  • This epic 16-mile hike climbs from Yosemite Valley to the top of the most iconic crest in Yosemite National Park.
  • This 1.2-mile loop takes visitors to the base of the tallest waterfall in North America, an electrifying Yosemite National Park feature.
  • This 0.1-mile stroll at Grizzly Falls Picnic Area in Sequoia National Forest reaches the base of an 80-foot waterfall along the Generals Highway near the Cedar Grove Area of Kings Canyon National Park.
  • This 5-mile loop is scenic and easy, exploring east from the backcountry gateway at Road's End along both sides of the South Fork Kings River in Kings Canyon.
  • This 0.5-mile hike reaches an exception Kings Canyon National Park overlook with views into Kings Canyon.
  • This 0.8-mile loop in the Grant Grove passes through a Fallen Monarch to reach the General Grant Tree, one of the world's largest sequoias.
  • This 2-mile hike reaches a granite summit with 360-degree views over the Redwood Mountain Grove and Kings Canyon.
  • This 8.3-mile loop on Hart Tree Trail and Redwood Creek Trail passes tranquil streams and interesting sequoias in the Redwood Mountain Grove in Kings Canyon National Park.
  • This 0.6-mile hike (with a lot of stairs) sports panoramic views and should be considered a mandatory hike for first time visitors to Sequoia National Park.
  • This paved 1-mile hike visits the world's biggest tree, a landmark within the Giant Forest in Sequoia National Park.
  • This easy, educational, and beautiful 1.6-mile loop explores the giant sequoias around Round Meadow in the Giant Forest of Sequoia National Park.
  • This 2-mile hike visits a large granite dome in the Giant Forest of Sequoia National Park with great views to the west.
  • This gradual 3.4-mile hike visits the tallest waterfall in Sequoia National Park.
  • This level 1.6-mile loop visits a Sequoia you can stand inside (Chimney Tree) and another that someone used to live in (Tharp's Log).
  • This 1-mile stroll leaves Buckeye Flats Campground to visit the perfect swimming hole for a hot summer day in Sequoia National Park.
  • This 9.4-mile hike visits a spectacular pair of lakes high above Mineral King Valley in Sequoia National Park.
  • This 1-mile hike visits a refreshing natural water slide on the eastern side of the Great Western Divide in Giant Sequoia National Monument.
  • This 0.5-mile hike just off Western Divide Highway in Giant Sequoia National Monument provides a great view of the valley below.
  • This scenic 10 to 15-mile round trip hike crosses a lake-filled basin in the John Muir Wilderness to access to New Army Pass, a 12,300-foot pass on the border of Sequoia National Park.
  • This 8 to 9-mile day hike follows a secluded trail through mountain meadows to the South Fork Lakes and Cirque Lake.
  • This 22-mile round trip trek travels past Cottonwood Lakes Trail over New Army Pass to a 14,042-foot summit with towering views of the Sierra.

Hiking the Sierra Nevada Mountains

This magnificent mountain range covers much of the center of California, running 400 miles from north to south. Yosemite, Kings Canyon, and Sequoia National Parks all lie within the Sierra Nevada MOuntains, as well as a patchwork of other state and federally protected lands. The highest peaks are located on the east side of the range. The highest point in the lower 48 states, Mount Whitney rises to 14,505 feet, and is one a dozen 14ers in the High Sierra. This land of mountain meadows, lakes, rivers, and peaks was made for hiking. Choose a trail from the list below and begin exploring the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Trail
Description
Distance
Lat, Long
North Grove Big Trees050North Grove - Big Trees Trail in Calaveras Big Trees State Park
This easy loop explores the first giant sequoias discovered by settlers in California.
1.5 miles
25 feet
38.278071,
-120.309392
Upper Natural Bridge060Upper Natural Bridge Trail
This fun hike visits a limestone tunnel (that you can swim through) in a creek in Calaveras County.
2 miles
300 feet
38.052011,
-120.471381
Dragoon Gulch070Dragoon Gulch Trail
This loop follows a creek and up a ridge to views over Sonora.
2.5
325 feet
37.982397,
-120.39055
Hetch Hetchy Wapama Falls150Wapama Falls in Yosemite National Park
This level hike tours the reservoir in Hetch Hetchy Valley to a thundering waterfall in the northwest corner of the park.
5 miles
200 feet
37.946905,
-119.787376
Yosemite May Lake160May Lake in Yosemite National Park
This short east hike visits a peaceful alpine lake in the high elevation region of Yosemite north of Yosemite Valley.
2.4 miles
400 feet
37.832633,
-119.491181
Yosemite Mirror Lake170Mirror Lake in Yosemite National Park
This easy hike visits a relaxing reflective pool on the east end of Yosemite Valley.
2 to 2.8 miles
100 feet
37.747188,
-119.55021
Yosemite Half Dome180Half Dome in Yosemite National Park
This epic hike climbs from Yosemite Valley to the top of the most iconic crest in the Yosemite Landscape.
16 miles
4,800 feet
37.747915,
-119.531994
Yosemite Mist Trail190The Mist Trail in Yosemite National Park
This exciting trail climbs the Merced River past Vernal Fall and Nevada Fall, two of Yosemite's prize waterfalls.
1.8 to 6.5 miles
400 to 1,900 feet
37.732178,
-119.558036
Panorama Trail Yosemite200Panorama Trail in Yosemite National Park
This hike travels from Glacier Point down to Yosemite Valley in the most scenic way possible, ending with the Mist Trail.
10 miles (one-way)
3,200 feet
37.727925,
-119.602797
Glacier Point205Glacier Point
This 7,214-foot overlook towers above Yosemite Valley and provides incredible drive-up views.
0.25 miles
50 feet
37.727103,
-119.574456
Lower Yosemite Fall210Lower Yosemite Fall in Yosemite National Park
This electrifying loop delivers visitors to the base of the tallest waterfall in North America.
1.2 miles
100 feet
37.745347,
-119.594777
Yosemite Taft Point220Taft Point in Yosemite National Park
This out and back hike visits an overlook on the south wall of Yosemite Valley with fascinating rock fissures carved into the exposed granite.
4 miles
200 feet
37.7126,
-119.586318
Tunnel View235Tunnel View
Pull the car over at this extraordinary must see viewpoint looking up Yosemite Valley.
0 miles37.715476,
-119.67678
Bridalveil Fall230Bridalveil Fall in Yosemite National Park
This easy paved trail visits the base of a 620-foot single-drop waterfall on the south side of Yosemite Valley.
0.5 miles
50 feet
37.720052,
-119.628682
Chilnualna Falls240Chilnualna Falls in Yosemite National Park
This out and back hike begins near raucous cascades and ends atop a waterfall.
8 miles
2,200 feet
37.548391,
-119.633691
Mariposa Grove250Mariposa Grove in Yosemite National Park
This hike explores the biggest trees in Yosemite, which can be seen on foot or by tram.
1.6 - 8 miles
400 to 1,200 feet
37.501462,
-119.610862
Grizzly Falls Sequoia National Forest260Grizzly Falls in Sequoia National Forest
This stroll at Grizzly Falls Picnic Area reaches the base of an 80-foot waterfall along the Generals Highway near the Cedar Grove Area of Kings Canyon National Park.
0.1 miles
10 feet
36.802979,
-118.743561
Roaring River Falls in Kings Canyon National Park264Roaring River Falls in Kings Canyon National Park
This paved out and back hike reaches a thundering little waterfall on a tributary of the Kings River.
0.3 miles
25 feet
36.783747,
-118.622121
Kanawyer Loop Trail Kings Canyon National Park266Kanawyer Loop Trail in Kings Canyon National Park
This loop is scenic and easy, exploring east from the backcountry gateway at Road's End along both sides of the South Fork Kings River in Kings Canyon.
5 miles
125 feet
36.794663,
-118.582941
Panoramic Point in Kings Canyon National Park270Panoramic Point in Kings Canyon National Park
This short out and back hike reaches an exception overlook with views into Kings Canyon.
0.5 miles
100 feet
36.753793,
-118.946754
North Boundary Trail in Kings Canyon National Park280North Boundary Trail in Kings Canyon National Park
This lollipop loop hike starts on the trail between Grant Grove and Grant Village and passes the General Grant Tree to reach a 2.75-mile loop through the pine forest north of the Grant Grove.
3.55 miles
375 feet
36.746811,
-118.972595
Grant Tree Trail Kings Canyon National Park284General Grant Tree Trail in Kings Canyon National Park
This loop in the Grant Grove passes through a Fallen Monarch to reach the General Grant Tree, one of the world's largest sequoias.
0.8 miles
50 feet
36.747,
-118.973128
North Grove Trail in Kings Canyon National Park286North Grove Trail in Kings Canyon National Park
This loop explores a quiet grove of sequoias near the crowded Grant Grove and can combine with Dead Giant Loop Trail for 3.25-mile hike.
2 miles
350 feet
36.747103,
-118.974642
Dead Giant Loop Trail in Kings Canyon National Park288Dead Giant Loop Trail in Kings Canyon National Park
This loop passes a small meadow and a large dead sequoia to reach Sequoia Lake Overlook and can combine with nearby North Grove Trail for 3.25-mile hike.
2.25 miles
300 feet
36.747103,
-118.974642
Grant Village to Grant Grove Trail Kings Canyon National Park290Grant Village to Grant Grove Trail in Kings Canyon National Park
This mile-long trail connects the visitor center at Grant Village with the parking lot at Grant Grove, passing through Azalea Campground to reach giant sequoias, including the General Grant Tree.
2 miles
250 feet
36.740049,
-118.963588
Buena Vista Peak in Kings Canyon National Park295Buena Vista Peak in Kings Canyon National Park
This out and back hike reaches a granite summit with 360-degree views over the Redwood Mountain Grove and Kings Canyon.
2 miles
420 feet
336.718234,
-118.896935
Hart Tree and Fallen Goliath Loop in Kings Canyon National Park297Hart Tree and Fallen Goliath Loop in Kings Canyon National Park
This loop on Hart Tree Trail and Redwood Creek Trail passes tranquil streams and interesting sequoias in the Redwood Mountain Grove.
8.3 miles
925 feet
36.707444,
-118.92093
Tokopah Falls300Tokopah Falls in Sequoia National Park
This gradual out and back hike visits the tallest waterfall in Sequoia National Park.
3.4 miles
600 feet
36.613952, -118.693743
General Sherman310General Sherman Tree in Sequoia National Park
This paved out at back hike visits the world's biggest tree.
1 mile
200 feet
36.583219, -118.750734
Congress Loop320Congress Loop in Sequoia National Park
This easy paved loop visits the fourth and fifth tallest Sequoias in the world (among others).
2 miles
150 feet
36.575362, -118.751421
Sunset Rock330Sunset Rock in Sequoia National Park
This out and back hike visits a large granite dome with great views to the west.
2 miles
50 feet
36.575925, -118.775439
Big Trees Trail sequoia333Big Trees Trail in Sequoia National Park
This easy, educational, and beautiful loop explores the giant sequoias around Round Meadow.
1.6 miles
50 feet
36.565718,
-118.772369
Beetle Rock340 Beetle Rock in Sequoia National Park
This short walk from the Giant Forest Museum to Beetle Rock visits a granite dome with great views and stunning sunsets.
0.25 miles
50 feet
36.564122, -118.775514
Crescent Meadow350Crescent Meadow in Sequoia National Park
This level loop visits a Sequoia you can stand inside (Chimney Tree) and another that someone used to live in (Tharp's Log).
1.6 miles
150 feet
36.554884, -118.749207
Sugar Pine Trail and Bobcat Point Loop sequoia353Sugar Pine and Bobcat Point Trails Loop in Sequoia National Park
This short but diverse loop peaks at Bobcat Point, which presents a fierce perspective of Moro Rock and a massive canyon.
1.5 miles
250 feet
36.554884, -118.749207
Hanging Rock trail Sequoia National Park358Hanging Rock in Sequoia National Park
This short out and back hike passes views of Moro Rock en route to a balancing boulder on a canyon rim at the edge of the Giant Forest.
0.35 miles
100 feet
36.549128,
-118.768186
Moro Rock360Moro Rock in Sequoia National Park
This short out and back hike (with a lot of stairs) sports panoramic views and should be considered a mandatory hike for first time visitors to Sequoia National Park.
0.6 miles
300 feet
36.545449, -118.765519
Marble Falls370Marble Falls in Sequoia National Park
This out and back hike takes a flower-lined path up a mountain canyon to a powerful waterfall.
8 miles
2,400 feet
36.55421, -118.791919
Paradise Creek380Paradise Creek in Sequoia National Park
This short stroll leaves Buckeye Flats Campground to visit the perfect swimming hole for a hot summer day in the Sierra.
1 - 6 mile
75 feet
36.519288, -118.761254
Panther Creek390Panther Creek in Sequoia National Park
This out and back hike follows the Middle Fork Trail to a 100 foot waterfall into the Middle Fork of Kaweah River.
6 miles (or further)
600 feet
36.54044, -118.721037
Hockett Trail420Hockett Trail in Sequoia National Park
This out and back hike descends through sequoias to East Fork Kaweah River and further into the backcountry of the Mineral King area.
2.5 to 4.5 miles (or further)
500 feet
36.464097,
-118.66817
Eagle Lake430Eagle Lake in Sequoia National Park
The out and back hike climbs the west side of Mineral King Valley to a high-elevation lake.
7.2 miles
2,200 feet
36.416759, -118.605911
Monarch Lakes440Monarch Lakes in Sequoia National Park
This out and back hike visits a spectacular pair of lakes high above Mineral King Valley.
9.4 miles
2,500 feet
36.453241, -118.566259
Mount Pickering550Mount Pickering in Sequoia National Park
This 13,485-foot summit rises above Sky Blue Lake to offer sweeping views of the sierra.
30 miles
3,500 feet
36.527133,
-118.290875
Sky Blue Lake560Sky Blue Lake in Sequoia National Park
This hike extends beyond Lower Soldier Lake up Miter Basin to a deep blue lake surrounded by 14,000-foot peaks.
26 miles
2,300 feet
36.532788, -118.273494
Primrose Lake570Primrose Lake in Sequoia National Park
This trek visits a lake off the side of Miter Basin near Sky Blue Lake and below Mount Pickering.
28 miles
2,300 feet
36.521144, -118.276173
Mount Langley580Mount Langley in Sequoia National Park
This trek travels past Cottonwood Lakes Trail over New Army Pass to a 14,042-foot summit with towering views of the Sierra.
22 miles
4,000 feet
36.524419, -118.238826
Lower Soldier Lake590Lower Soldier Lake in Sequoia National Park
This 19.2-mile loop crosses Cottonwood Pass and New Army Pass to visit a beautiful lake that is an ideal camping spot for backpackers heading higher and deeper into the sierra.
17.6 -20.8 miles
1,500 - 2,300 feet
36.503604, -118.269331
Cirque Peak600Cirque Peak in the Inyo National Forest
This 12,900-foot summit can be reached via off-trail ascents from New Army Pass, Cirque Lake, and Chicken Spring Lake.
13 - 19 miles
2,900 feet
36.476732, -118.237023
Cottonwood Lakes620Cottonwood Lakes in the Inyo National Forest
This scenic trail provides a day hike through a lake-filled basin and access to New Army Pass, a 12,300-foot pass on the border of Sequoia National Park.
10 - 15 miles
1,400 - 2,300 feet
36.486405, -118.225265
Old Cottonwood Creek Trail630Old Cottonwood Creek Trail in the Inyo National Forest
This hike follows a secluded trail through mountain meadows to the South Fork Lakes and Cirque Lake.
8 - 9 miles
1,150 feet
36.482197, -118.212422
Chicken Spring Lake650Chicken Spring Lake in the Inyo National Forest
This hike continues past Cottonwood Pass to an alpine lake that makes a nice day hike destination or a good first camp for backpackers.
8.2 miles
1,330 feet
36.455588, -118.226842
Cottonwood Pas700Cottonwood Pass in the Inyo National Forest
This trail leaves Horseshoe Meadow for an 11,200-foot pass and a junction with the Pacific Crest Trail, with access to Golden Trout Wilderness and Sequoia National Park.
7 miles
1,200 feet
36.453638, -118.21519
Needles Lookout800Needles Lookout in Sequoia National Forest
This out and back hike visits a fire tower with unbeatable views of the region.
5 miles
450 feet
36.109822, -118.484724
Dome Rock830Dome Rock in Sequoia National Forest
This short out and back hike just off Western Divide Highway provides a great view of the valley below.
0.5 miles
75 feet
36.064945, -118.528798
Sierra Waterslide860Natural Water Slide in Sequoia National Forest
This out and back hike visits a refreshing natural water slide on the eastern side of the Great Western Divide.
1 mile
150 feet
36.037554, -118.517296
Trail of 100 Giants900Trail of 100 Giants in Sequoia National Forest
This pave loop visits a grove of Giant Sequoias alongside Western Divide Highway.
0.5 miles
50 feet
35.977959, -118.592566
View Sierra Nevada Hikes in a larger map
hikespeak
Kanawyer Loop Trail Kings Canyon National Park Road's End hike to Bailey Bridge Bubbs Creek Trail
Kings Canyon is a rugged trench in the Sierra Nevada Mountains that is so remote it can only be accessed from one road. In such a landscape, where a pristine river slices down a canyon between sheer rock walls, you would not expect to find a long and level trail suitable for casual hikers, but that's exactly what you will find on Kanawyer Loop Trail. This easy 5-mile... Read more.
By: hikespeak Last updated: September 20, 2013
Grant Village to Grant Grove Trail General Grant Tree Trail Azalea Campground Hike
If you visit the Grant Grove Area of Kings Canyon National Park, you will probably want to stop by both the General Grant Tree in the Grant Grove and the visitor center in nearby Grant Village. You can drive between these two locations or connect them on foot with a trail that is one-mile one-way, passing through Azalea Campground to bridge the two busy areas. The trail... Read more.
By: hikespeak Last updated: September 3, 2013
North Boundary Trail Loop Kings Canyon National Park Grant Grove Hike
The General Grant Tree Trail is the busiest hike in the Grant Grove Area of Kings Canyon National Park, but most visitors probably don't know that the popular paved loop can be used to reach North Boundary Trail, a narrow dirt trail that sees little foot traffic. Cross through the Grant Grove to reach a 2.75-mile loop on North Boundary Trail and North Boundary Cutoff... Read more.
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Distance: 3.55 miles – Elevation change: 375 feet
By: hikespeak Last updated: September 3, 2013
General Grant Tree Trail Kings Canyon National Park Grant Grove Loop Hike
The Grant Grove is one of the top draws in Kings Canyon National Park, containing the park's most important sequoia, the General Grant Tree. The Grant Grove is one of the world's premier sequoia habitats with several of the world's largest trees. It is the oldest section of Kings Canyon National Park, first protected as General Grant National Park in 1890. A paved 0.8-mile... Read more.
By: hikespeak Last updated: September 3, 2013
Dead Giant Loop Trail Sequoia Lake Overlook Kings Canyon National Park Grant Grove Hike Sunset Trail
Dead Giant Loop Trail is an enjoyable single-track loop trail through a forest of giant sequoias and pines in the Grant Grove Area of Kings Canyon National Park. In addition to a massive still-standing dead sequoia, the lightly traveled trail passes Sequoia Lake Overlook, which presents views over a small blue reservoir to the southwest just outside the national park. ... Read more.
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Distance: 2.25 miles – Elevation change: 300 feet
By: hikespeak Last updated: September 3, 2013