Yosemite new

We spent four nights in this incredible park and reserved all of our sites last minute. In this post, I list out all the hikes, viewpoints, and campsites from our four-night stay!


Four Mile Trail

This trail is a 9.2 mile out and back, with a 3,612 ft elevation gain. The route is primarily switchbacks, with a few straight stretches towards the end. The winding route upwards provides amazing views of Yosemite Valley, Half Dome, North Dome, El Capitan, Cathedral Rocks, the Royal Arches, Tenaya Canyon, and Yosemite Falls. Since we went later in the summer, most of the waterfalls were dried up at this time. At the top, the views of Glacier Point are well worth the pain of the hike. With that said, you can drive up to the visitor center of Glacier Point to get the same end view. During non-covid years they offer a shuttle service where you could hike one way, and shuttle back the other. Overall, it ended up as the hardest hike we did all summer, but I still think it was 100% worth it!

Taft Point and Sentinel Dome Loop

This trail is a 5.1 mile loop with 1,122 feet elevation gain. The view at Sentinel Dome offers 360-degree views of the park and additional views of the Half Dome. Taft Point provided more amazing views of the Valley, and drops of 2,000 feet below. We hiked the loop counterclockwise, starting with Sentinel Dome and ending with Taft Point. Once arriving at Taft Point it was about 6 pm, with crowds covering a lot of the lookout areas. On our drive back to the Valley, we were able to catch an amazing view of the sunset, and saw a family of bears!

Mariposa Grove

This trail has the option for multiple routes, and we took a 5.2 mile out and back to view some giant sequoias of the park. The Grizzly Giant and California Tunnel Tree were two of the incredible trees on this route. We opted to take the service road on our way back and caught views of a stunning sunset.

Hikes we planned on

Due to our timing of visiting the park, various waterfalls and lakes were dried up. If we would have gone in the summer, the Yosemite Falls trail and Mirror Lake trial would be two on our list.


Upper Pines

 This site is located in Yosemite Valley and has great proximity to multiple trailheads. We stayed here our first night. I was so tired after our hike this day I forgot to take pictures of our spot here! 

Lower Pines

 This site is also located in Yosemite Valley. Our spot had views of the Half Dome!


Wawona is about 45 minutes from Yosemite Valley. It was a great location for our last few nights in the park.


Tunnel View

Amazing views of the whole park. We stopped here about 7 am and caught the end of the sunrise. 

Sentinel Bridge

Views of the Half Dome reflected in the river below. 

El Capitan Meadow

We arrived here for sunrise here and watched some climbers start their journey up the face of the rock. 


We stayed up late one night to stargaze and it was well worth it! Our attempts to capture the stars on the camera fell short, but we got a couple on my iPhone. Still working on learning the camera settings 🙂

And that's it for Yosemite! Afterward, we made our way back to San Francisco, completed our journey up the coast of CA, and now are currently exploring Oregon 🙂