“Attracting over 1 million visitors yearly”
Bridalveil Fall is one of the most prominent waterfalls in the Yosemite Valley in California, seen yearly by millions of visitors to Yosemite National Park. The waterfall is 188 metres in height and flows year round. The Ahwahneechee tribe believed that Bridalveil Fall was home to a vengeful spirit named Pohono which guarded the entrance to the valley, and that those leaving the valley must not look directly into the waterfall lest they be cursed. They also believed that inhaling the mist of Bridalveil Fall would improve one's chances of marriage. Distance: 0.5 mi (0.8 km) round trip Elevation gain: Approximately 80 ft (24 m) Difficulty: Easy Time: 20 minutes Begin at: Bridalveil Fall Parking Area Plunging 620 feet (189 meters), Bridalveil Fall is often the first waterfall you'll see when entering Yosemite Valley. In spring, it thunders; during the rest of the year, look for its characteristic light, swaying flow. A paved trail leads from the parking area to the base of this waterfall, which flows year-round. Although paved, this is trail is not wheelchair accessible due to its grade. Seasonality The trail to Bridalveil Fall is open year-round. When the water is at its peak in spring and early summer, you can expect to get wet! In some cases the spray is so strong, you may not even be able to easily access the end of the trail. Expect icy and very slick conditions in winter. Bridalveil Fall Trail map and profile Stay Safe The rocks and boulders above the viewing platform are slippery even when dry; stay safe by staying on the paved trail. Scrambling off trail in this area has led to serious injuries. If you choose to park along Southside Drive, when getting out of your vehicle, watch for traffic and be cautious opening car doors and crossing the road. Water Drinking water is not available at the trailhead, base of the waterfall, or parking area. Restrooms Restrooms are available in the parking area. Parking Parking is available at the trailhead, accessible from the Wawona Road (continuation of Highway 41) or Southside Drive. The parking area often fills up quickly in summer and, while there is a lot of turnover, traffic jams are common when getting in and out of this parking lot. Another option is to drive a little further east on Southside Drive into Yosemite Valley (a few hundred yards), where you'll find parking on either side of the road with a different trail option. This trail is a bit longer—an additional 0.25 miles (0.4 km), crosses Bridalveil Creek, and showcases different views of Bridalveil Fall as you approach the main parking area. Transportation Shuttle service is not available to the Bridalveil Fall area. Drive your own car to the trailhead (or take a long hike using the Valley Loop Trail). Trail Etiquette Leashed pets are allowed on this trail. Keep your food within arm's reach at all times and do not feed the wildlife. Carry out all trash and food waste (fruit peels, shells, etc.).
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