Chilnualna Falls from Wawona
One of the tallest falls outside Yosemite Valley, Chilnualna cascades down two chutes. The cascade at the bottom is narrower and packs a real punch after a wet winter. A series of switchbacks leads to the top fall. You may be splashed a bit once you reach the falls, but the trail itself is pretty dry.
8.2 miles/6 hr. Moderate to strenuous. From Wawona, take Chilnualna Rd., just north of the Merced River's South Fork, until it dead-ends at "The Redwoods," about 1.3 miles. This is the trail head.
This is the walking alternative to the Mariposa Grove tram tour. It's a nice stroll to see an impressive tree, and the hike climbs only 400 feet.
1.6 miles/1 1/2 hr. Easy. The trail begins at a sign near the map dispenser at the east end of the Mariposa Grove parking lot.
This hike sounds long, but there's a one-way option in the summer that uses the Wawona shuttle bus for the return trip. The trail climbs through a forest and then ascends the Wawona Dome and Wawona Basin, both of which provide excellent views. If you don't want to hike back, you can hop on a free shuttle for a one-way trip of 6 miles.
12 miles/1 long day; with shuttle, about half that. Moderate to strenuous. Park at the Wawona Store parking area and walk east 1/4 mile to Forest Dr. The trail head is on the right.
At the starting point, you'll be able to see Sentinel Dome on your left. The trail descends slightly; at the first fork, bear right. The way winds through manzanita and pine trees before beginning its ascent. It's a steep scramble to the top of Sentinel Dome, and you have to leave the trail on the north (left) side to clamber up. The view from the top offers a 180-degree panorama of Yosemite Valley, one of the most stunning vistas in a park that's full of them.
2.2 miles/2-3 hr. Moderate. Take Glacier Point Rd. to the Sentinel Dome parking lot, about 3 miles from Glacier Point.
The walk to Taft Point is not demanding, and it crosses a broad meadow dotted by wildflowers in early summer. On the approach to Taft Point, note the deep chasms, known as fissures, in the rock. Some of the cracks are 40 feet long, 20 feet wide at the top, and 100 feet deep. A small pipe railing farther on marks the 6*3-foot Taft Point overlook hanging over Yosemite Valley. You can test your mettle for heights here: The lookout is more than 3,000 feet up from the valley floor.
2.2 miles/2 hr. Moderate. The trail head begins at the same point as the hike to Sentinel Dome . At the fork, head left.
Wawona Meadow Loop
This relaxing stroll encircles Wawona Meadow, curving around at its east end and heading back toward the road. It then crosses the highway and winds through forest until it returns to the Wawona Hotel. Some cars still use this road, so keep your eyes and ears open. This trail is also open to pets.
3.5 miles/1 1/2 hr. Easy. Take the dirt road through the Wawona golf course and walk about 150 ft. to the trail.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.