Though there is a wealth of gorgeous trails in the area, The Four-Mile Trail is certainly one that is worth a look on your next hiking trip in Yosemite. Known for its beautiful scenery, this trail may be one of the best ways to see the entirety of what Yosemite Valley has to offer.
You start on the valley floor, nearby the Swinging Bridge, and then walk to Glacier Point, one of the most prime sightseeing spots in Yosemite. But, the thing that makes this walk so great is the multitude of landmarks you see on this long and enjoyable hike. As you walk, you’ll get to see basically everything that makes this area so fantastic, such as Cathedral Rocks, El Capitan, Sentinel Rock, Half Dome, Clouds Rest, North Dome, and the Royal Arches. From gorgeous waterfalls, to the amazing Glacier Point, everything that Yosemite has to offer will be on full display as you make this awesome trek.
Make sure you bring plenty of water and at least one meal for this trek, as the length of the trail truly lives up to its name. Coming in at about 4.7 miles one way (9.4 miles round trip), The Four-Mile Trail offers a truly challenging length that should take you most of the day, particularly if you do the round trip (normal hikers take around 2-3.5 hours one way).
Though the hike isn’t extremely difficult, one thing that many find hard to deal with is the elevation change. If you start at the valley floor and walk up to Glacial point, you will be dealing with a 3,200 feet elevation change (from 4,000 to 7,200 feet) filled with switchbacks and fairly steep passes. Keep this in mind before you start.
Again, this isn’t an extremely hard trip (only a 4/10 going down), but it is a 7 star difficulty if you are going up the mountain. This, however, is mainly because of the steepness that you encounter at some points, as the trail is wide and smooth throughout the trek.