Fall-filling Yosemite

Bike Ride the Valley Floor at Yosemite National Park in California

A cool thing is happening in Yosemite National Park right now. The summer crowds are gone and the valley is alive with waterfalls ... and the colors of fall. Time to get out of your car and explore Yosemite Valley by bike. A 10-mile car-free paved trail that loops around the valley features numerous iconic highlights.

From all compass points the views are high (Half Dome), mighty (El Capitan), and wondrous (waterfalls, flowing beautifully, as of this publication date). With all the natural grandeur, staying focused on the trail can be tough! Wheel to Lower Yosemite Falls, where there’s an easy walk to the viewpoint. Finish the loop by rolling past expansive meadows and across Swinging Bridge.No doubt about it, seeing Yosemite from the seat of a bike is one fall-filling experience.

 In fall it's best to bring your own bike if you can. Here's a map of the paved bike path in Yosemite Valley. Until it snows, bike rentals are available at Yosemite Valley Lodge (no rentals during rain). First come, first served. Bike rental fee: $12.50/hr or $30.50/day. Open 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (last rental at 3:45 p.m.; bikes must be returned by 4:45 p.m.). Phone: (209) 372-1208. They also have maps.

Trending Stories NorCal

View all Stories
  1. Sponsored

    Outdoor Zen in Sonoma County

    Sonoma County’s abundant natural beauty is good for your mind, body, and spirit. From redwoods and rhododendron walks, to yoga in a vineyard, here are five ways to soothe your soul in Sonoma County.

  2. Feather Fanfare

    Feathery birds swing and swoop on the edge of the San Francisco Bay, surrounded by the Diablo Range and Santa Cruz Mountains. See it all from a levee in serene Ravenswood Preserve.

  3. Mellow in the Marsh

    Beach, birds, ice plant popping purple flowers: That’s a hiking slam dunk! Hike about 2 miles at Pescadero Marsh Natural Preserve using their fully reopened and well-signed Sequoia Audubon Trail.

  4. Watershed Moment

    The Presidio in San Francisco offers some of the best urban hiking in the country! And the new marsh bridges under Presidio Parkway offer more habitat for plants, fish, and bird life... and trails for us!


Trending Stories SoCal

View all Stories
  1. Lavender Labyrinth

    Labyrinths are meditative meanders. Add fragrant organic lavender and you're at Bees N Blooms at the foot of Taylor Mountain near Santa Rosa, experiencing their “ancient pathway of peace” and more.

  2. Putnam Pedal and Poppies!

    Helen Putnam Regional Park punches above her weight. The compact yet bountiful park near Petaluma explodes with wildflowers every spring, in particular the state’s signature California poppy.

  3. Take the Musical Road

    Drive the Musical Road—one of only a handful in the world—to connect two of Antelope Valley’s best parks, Prime Desert Woodland Preserve with its Joshua Trees and Apollo Community Regional Park.

  4. Barrel of Fun

    Put a spring in your step and a barrel in your belly in Antelope Valley's Palmdale. Do a 2.75-mile hike on Barrel Springs Trail and enjoy a local winery that shares part of the nomenclature.