John Muir Trail

Yosemite National Park, California 95389

Elevation Gain11,078ft
Trailhead Elevation6,967ft
Elevation Min/Max4569/9944ft
Elevation Start/End6967/6981ft

John Muir Trail

John Muir Trail is a hiking and horse trail in Mariposa County and Tuolumne County, California. It is within Yosemite National Park. It is 19.6 miles long and begins at 6,967 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 38.2 miles with a total elevation gain of 11,078 feet. Clark Point and another viewpoint, the Nevada Fall attraction, and the Sunrise High Sierra Camp site can be seen along the trail. There are also a water tank, springs, and a cliff along the trail. The trail ends near the Nature Center at Happy Isles museum. There is also drinking water near the end of the trail. This trail connects with the following: Mist Trail, Half Dome Trail, Snake Dike Approach and Pack Trail.

John Muir Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Hiking Yosemite National Park (Falcon Guides)
Suzanne Swedo
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"The trail climbs gently on an eroded asphalt path through black oak and ponderosa pine forest among enormous lichen-draped boulders. In about a half mile, across the thundering Merced on your right, watch for 370-foot Illilouette Fall tucked back in its deeply cut gorge in the Panorama Cliff. The trail now steepens briefly, then suddenly descends to the Vernal Fall Bridge at 0.8 mile. Upstream, Vernal Fall is perfectly framed by maple, alder, and various conifers as it drops 317 feet over the lower step of the Giant Staircase."

John Muir Trail Trip Reports

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Even though you are always climbing, from 10,800 to 11,500 feet, it is a easy hike. The trail is easy to follow and the scenery is beautiful as you pass by several lakes. As you reach the third lake you are hiking above the snow level and the air is getting thin. Even though you hike through some forrest you are out in the sun 50% of the time so sun screen is important. A hike well worth taking.

John Muir Trail Photos

Trail Information

Yosemite National Park
Nearby City
Yosemite National Park
Skill Level
Yosemite National Park
Local Contacts
USGS Half Dome, Koip Peak, Merced Peak, Tenaya Lake, and Vogelsang Peak quads
Local Maps

Trail Log