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Location: Yosemite Village, Yosemite National Park, Mariposa County
Stream: Yosemite Creek
Alternate Names:

Height: 1430 ft.
Access:   car   wheelchair   hike   nodog  
Distance: 7 miles (RT) (hike)
Elevation: 4000 ft. (+2700 ft.) (hike)
Season: Mar-Jul
Form:   plunge
Lat/Long:37.75632, -119.59683
Directions:The trailhead to Upper Yosemite Falls is at Sunnyside walk-in campground on Northside Drive, just a little west of Lower Yosemite Falls. If you can find one of the very few legal spaces, park at Yosemite Lodge (across from Lower Yosemite Falls) and walk up the road to the trailhead; otherwise you will need to take the shuttle from Yosemite Village.   Upper Yosemite Falls pictures for sale; Click to view gallery

Upper Yosemite Falls in Yosemite National Park, California, is one of the most spectacular sights in all of the United States. In the summer, the water flow dwindles to almost nothing, but in the spring during snow melt, the waterfall is overwhelming. Upper Yosemite Falls can be seen along the roadside at a number of viewpoints along Southside Drive. The best ones are at Cooks Meadow and Swinging Bridge, and it also can be seen along the trail to Lower Yosemite Falls.

For those with a lot of energy, it is a grueling 3 hour hike to the top of Upper Yosemite Falls. It is well worth the effort, however. The best views of the upper falls you will find a little ways past Columbia Rock, about 1.5 miles from the bottom. Also just past Columbia Rock, there is a little side trail on the right, just before you get your first view. Take it. It is a very short walk that leads to a single viewpoint of the upper, middle, and lower falls (it is the only viewpoint for the middle falls). If you continue up the trail, you will get some closer views of Upper Yosemite Falls. Then the trail continues to the top (another 2 hours of hiking). There is not really a good view of the upper falls at the top, though you can get to a scary ledge beside the waterfall, looking down to the bottom. There are awesome views of the valley from the top, and if you are there in the summer months, you can actually swim in Yosemite Creek at the top. Now that is refreshing after a grueling 3 hour hike! But in the spring, the creek is flowing far too fast.

Together with Lower Yosemite Falls (320 ft.) and the middle cascades (675 ft.), the total height of the waterfalls is 2425 ft., making this the one of the highest waterfalls in the world. It is often said to be the 5th highest, though actually there are quite a few others that are higher (unofficially). At any rate, it is easily the single best thing in a national park that has plenty of incredible sights to see.

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Other waterfalls nearby:

Lower Yosemite Falls 0.35 miles
Lehamite Falls 0.99 miles
Royal Arch Cascade 1.46 miles
Staircase Falls 1.87 miles
Sentinel Falls 2.17 miles
Horsetail Falls 2.79 miles
Ribbon Falls 3.08 miles
Snow Creek Falls 3.34 miles
Vernal Falls 3.45 miles
Illilouette Falls 3.47 miles
Tenaya Falls 3.55 miles
Silver Apron Falls 3.56 miles
Bridalveil Falls 3.82 miles
Nevada Falls 4.05 miles
Widows Tears 5.06 miles
Silver Strand Falls 5.26 miles
Merced River Falls 6.32 miles
Tamarack Falls 6.49 miles
Cascades 6.49 miles
Tioga Pass Falls 6.51 miles
Wildcat Falls 6.78 miles
Bunnell Cascade 6.79 miles
South Fork Tuolumne Falls 7.11 miles
Grouse Creek Falls 8.29 miles
Avalanche Creek Falls 8.92 miles
Foresta Falls 9.72 miles

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Add Your Comment for Upper Yosemite Falls

Date Pic Comment
2011-09-11
Seaborn Jones
Sierra Nevada, Ca
  This hike should actually be classified as \\\\\\\"strenous\\\\\\\". but well worth the effort. It is accessed from Camp 4, just west of the base of the falls.