Mist Falls

Three Rivers, California 93271

Mist Falls

Mist Falls Professional Review and Guide

"The spectacular hike from Road’s End to Mist Falls in Kings Canyon National Park leads along the magni?cent Kings River as it surges through the canyon beneath sheer granite cliffs soaring thousands of feet overhead. The hike ends at powerful Mist Falls, where the river hurtles over a ledge and crashes onto the rocks below.

The powerful South Fork of the Kings River travels through a tremendously deep canyon, one of the most remarkable features in the vast Sierra Nevada. The canyon, scoured by glaciers and boasting exceedingly tall walls of stark granite, is often considered a rival of Yosemite Valley farther north. Though it lacks the distinctive domes and proliferation of mighty waterfalls, it does share the great walls of granite, awesome river, and incredible scenery."

More Mist Falls Professional Reviews and Guides

"Mist Falls drops 50 feet over a wide granite ledge into a pool lined with boulders. Huge, flat rocks 100 feet below the falls are perfect spots to view the waterfall. The trail parallels the South Fork Kings River along the valley floor between towering canyon walls for the first 2.5 miles. The last two miles head up the narrow canyon into Paradise Valley past numerous cascades and cataracts."

"This outing takes you to delightful Mist Falls, a wonderful place for a picnic lunch in the shade. The Paradise Valley Trail starts at the information center and travels through sunny woods. Cross the Copper Creek Bridge; the bridge is north of the Kanawy"

"Anyone who visits Kings Canyon should make the nearly 4-mile trek to Mist Falls, especially early in the season when the falls are at full force. The first half of the journey is on relatively flat trail, and the second half climbs at a reasonable grade, allowing both experienced hikers and tourists in reasonable shape the opportunity to see the majestic falls and feel the driving spray near the base. The trail is popular, not only with dayhikers, but also with backpackers bound on the ever popular Rae Lakes Loop; don’t expect a high degree of solitude."

"This cataract on the upper gorge of the Kings River, a thundering spectacle in spring, still puts on a delightful water pageant even after the late summer’s drought quells its roar."

"The nearly 4-mile trek to Mist Falls is a must-do hike for anyone visiting Kings Canyon, especially early in the season when the falls are at peak glory.

The first half of the trail follows the relatively flat floor of Kings Canyon, with the second half climbing moderately up the South Fork Kings River gorge toward Paradise Valley. The trail is a popular one, not only with day hikers, but also with backpackers on the Rae Lakes Loop. Consequently, you shouldn’t expect a high dose of solitude."

"In the canyon of the king, there lies a mystical cascade that is not too tough, not too far, nor too steep. The hike is relatively easy, but at 6.5 miles it may be a long distance for beginners. While not incredibly photogenic, the falls have a raw power and potency; during heavy runoff, being even half a mile away from the falls can be a dripping experience."

Mist Falls Reviews

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8/8/2018
I'm loving my time in King's Canyon and this is just one more reason why. The mist from the falls is so refreshing. It is absolutely beautiful and while the smoke from wildfires unfortunately hang overhead it is still possible to enjoy the incredible beauty of this place. The trail is smooth sailing through trees for the first bit, only starts to become more challenging as you get closer to the falls and beyond. It is totally worth it to keep going past the falls into Paradise Valley.
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7/5/2018
This hike is about water. It begins beside the South Fork of the Kings River. As hikers proceed up a glacier carved canyon, the River increasingly cascades over granite boulders. Towering rock sentinels line the Canyon walls. In places an evergreen forest provides shade. Other sections of the trail cross open granite slabs. Downslope breezes blow cooling mists from the Falls as trekkers approach the hike’s destination. Please visit for additional hike details.
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6/10/2017
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6/18/2010
This was by far the most beautiful trail of our trip. There were quite a few people, but the views and the lush surroundings were breathtaking.
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5/16/2008
Although Mist Falls is the destination, this gets 5 stars for views of the raging river, vistas of snow-capped peaks, picturesque canyon walls and a truly beautiful trail. Don't let the start of the trail fool you ... it's a bit of a slog walking on crushed granite. The trail turns to packed earth, forested, with wonderful close-up river views. Walking across a granite apron, look back at snowy peaks. On this Friday hike, going in we encountered only a (large) group of teen backpackers from San Francisco and two German fellows, although we met 20 people on our way out. A hiker said he saw a rattlesnake by the trail near the falls, and a notice posted at the falls says a hiker was bitten in Sept. 2007 by a black bear. By the way, for Sequoia-Kings Canyon we really enjoyed the Mike White hiking books, which have useful narrative, good maps and a grid showing what trails are hikeable during which months.
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6/28/2005
The beginning of the trail has been ravaged by diseased trees, and a controlled burn gave this initial section a depressing pall. Matters soon improve as you approach the Bailey bridge at two miles. Wonderful views of the junction of King River and Bubbs Creek. The trail splits here to the left, cross a rise, and drops to follow the beautiful South Fork Kings River. At about 3 miles the trail climbs, passing smaller falls until reaching signed Mist Falls. Some people on a Saturday afternoon, but not overrun. Rested on a Granite slab half-way up the falls. A good, moderately difficult day hike.
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7/13/2001
Mist is an excellent trail run. Never crowded and very slight elevation gain it is a great place to run or just stroll through the woods for some quiet time.....
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Trail Information

Three Rivers
Nearby City
8-8.8 miles
Distance
820 feet
Elevation Gain
Several options
Trail Type
Moderate
Skill Level
4 hours
Duration
Spring, summer, fall; best in late spring and early summer when the waterfall is at its fullest
Season
Waterfalls
Features
47050 Generals Highway, Three Rivers 93271 (559) 565-3341 www.nps.gov/seki
Local Contacts

Activity Feed

Oct 2018