Hikes in Kings Canyon National Park

Below is a collection of trails in Kings Canyon National Park. 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 Kings Canyon National Park

  • 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 0.5-mile hike reaches an exception Kings Canyon National Park overlook with views into Kings Canyon.
  • This 2.25-mile loop passes a small meadow and a large dead sequoia to reach Sequoia Lake Overlook in Kings Canyon National Park.
  • This 2-mile loop explores a quiet grove of sequoias near Kings Canyon National Park's Grant Grove and can combine with Dead Giant Loop Trail for 3.25-mile hike.
  • 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 paved 0.3-mile hike in Kings canyon reaches a thundering little waterfall on a tributary of the Kings River.
  • 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.

Hiking Kings Canyon National Park

While perhaps not as famous as the other national parks California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains (Yosemite National Park and Sequoia National Park), Kings Canyon can sure compete with those other parks where it counts, natural beauty.

Kings Canyon National Park is split into two pieces.

One section contains Grant Grove, home of the General Grant Tree, the world’s third largest tree, and Redwood Mountains Grove, the world’s biggest giant sequoia grove (and a real hiker haven).

Another much larger section of the park contains Kings Canyon itself, where stunning snowy summits rise above 2,000-foot tall sheer canyon walls. There is only one road into this enormous backcountry playground, ending at Cedar Grove in the bottom of the canyon.

Before there was Kings Canyon National Park, there was General Grant National Park, established in 1890 (the same year as Sequoia National Park) to protect the giant sequoias in the Grant Grove. In 1940, Kings Canyon National Park was created, covering 720 square miles and absorbing General Grant National Park.

Kings Canyon National Park borders Sequoia National Park and the National Park Service manages the two parks like one massive 1,350 square mile entity. The combined parks have fourteen campgrounds to accommodate visitors and there are additional campgrounds in the Hume Lake Ranger District of Sequoia National Forest, which also borders the two national parks.

The scenic Generals Highway (Routes 180 and 198) is the main road through the park, passing the Redwood Mountain Grove and General Grant Grove before coming to an end at Cedar Grove in Kings Canyon.

Grant Grove is a 30-mile drive from the Giant Forest in Sequoia National Park (home of the world’s largest tree, the General Sherman Tree), making it easy for hikers to visit the big trees in both parks. It is a longer drive down to Cedar Grove, but you can actually get a good a good view of Kings Canyon right near Grant Village at Panoramic Point.

Trail
Description
Distance
Location
Roaring River Falls in Kings Canyon National Park264Roaring River Falls
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
36.718234,
-118.896935
Hart Tree and Fallen Goliath Loop in Kings Canyon National Park297Hart Tree and Fallen Goliath Loop
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
View Sierra Nevada trails and campgrounds in a larger map
Or explore hikes around Kings Canyon National Park on the Hike Finder Map
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Ediza Lake - Thousand Island Lake Loop Ansel Adams Wilderness High Trail Hike Pacific Crest Trail John Muir Trail Thousand Island Garnet Ediza Lakes Loop Inyo National Forest Mammoth Lakes Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains California
Ediza Lake – Thousand Island Lake Loop The Ediza Lake – Thousand Island Lake Loop is a top-tier backpacking circuit in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Covering about 25 miles with 2,110 feet of elevation change, the loop is usually done in three days of hiking (not including any additional layover days). The loop starts and ends at Agnew Meadows, located near Devils... Read more.
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Tagged with · Ansel Adams Wilderness · John Muir Trail · Lakes · Mammoth Lakes · Pacific Crest Trail
Distance: 23.75 miles · Elevation change: 2110 feet
By: Published: Last updated: August 14, 2016
Thousand Island Lake Ansel Adams Wilderness High Trail Hike Pacific Crest Trail Inyo National Forest Mammoth Lakes Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains California
Thousand Island Lake is regarded as one of the most spectacular lakes in the Eastern Sierra. Banner Peak, a towering 12,936-foot mountain above the lake's west shore, is reflected in its clear blue water. The lake has numerous (if not a thousand) small islands. Both John Muir Trail and Pacific Crest Trail pass Thousand Island Lake, giving hikers significant and scenic... Read more.
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Tagged with · Ansel Adams Wilderness · Lakes · Mammoth Lakes · Pacific Crest Trail
Distance: 8.75 miles · Elevation change: 1,515 feet
By: Published: Last updated: December 27, 2016
Garnet Lake Hike John Muir Trail Ansel Adams Wilderness Inyo National Forest Mammoth Lakes Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains California
Garnet Lake is located on John Muir Trail between Shadow Lake and Thousand Island Lake in the Ansel Adams Wilderness of Inyo National Forest. The lake is stunning, set below the 12,936-foot mass of Banner Peak and framed by ridges of bedrock and pines. Hiking directly there, Garnet Lake is 8.55 miles from the trailhead at Agnew Meadows, so most of the lake's visitors are... Read more.
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Tagged with · Ansel Adams Wilderness · John Muir Trail · Lakes · Mammoth Lakes
Distance: 5.65 miles · Elevation change: 1130 feet
By: Published: Last updated: December 27, 2016
Iceberg Lake Hike Ansel Adams Wilderness Inyo National Forest Mammoth Lakes Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains California Iceberg Lake Trail from Ediza Lake
Cradled below a jagged ridge of volcanic peaks called the Minarets, Iceberg Lake is a beautiful, potentially snow-bordered or ice-filled lake of vivid blue water. The backcountry lake is located deep in the Ansel Adams Wilderness of Inyo National Forest, 8.3 miles from the trailhead at Agnew Meadows. Iceberg Lake is just a mile from Ediza Lake and a nice extension for... Read more.
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Tagged with · Ansel Adams Wilderness · Lakes · Mammoth Lakes
Distance: 2 miles · Elevation change: 510 feet
By: Published: Last updated: December 30, 2016
Ediza Lake Ansel Adams Wilderness Inyo National Forest Mammoth Lakes Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains California Shadow Creek Trail Ediza Lake Hike
With high summit-reflecting waters, Ediza Lake is beautiful to behold. The lake is wrapped by meadows and trees and sports massive views of Mount Ritter and Banner Peak, making it a popular destination for hikers in the Ansel Adams Wilderness of Inyo National Forest. Starting from Agnew Meadows near Mammoth Lakes, Ediza Lake is reachable on a rewarding full day hike of... Read more.
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Tagged with · Ansel Adams Wilderness · Creeks · John Muir Trail · Lakes · Mammoth Lakes
Distance: 15 miles · Elevation change: 1250 feet
By: Published: Last updated: December 27, 2016