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Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

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La Jolla, California
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Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

Hi all,

Was wondering which waterfalls would still be worth visiting in early August (considering the lack of precipitation in general in CA this winter so far). We only have a couple days to spend in Yosemite and if the waterfalls are going to be disappointing, I was thinking of spending more time at Glacier Point or other locations.

Any advice would be appreciated!

San Francisco
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1. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

Even in a normal year -- heck, even in an incredibly wet year -- waterfalls are dry by August. That doesn't mean that Yosemite Valley isn't fabulous. But it will also be crowded.

La Jolla, California
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2. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

I've heard that a few falls like Vernal, Nevada, and Bridalveil falls are still flowing in August. Do you think they'd still be worth a visit then? Or will they just be trickles for the most part?

Santa Clara...
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3. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

Yosemite Falls will be dry. But you are correct that Vernal and Nevada will be running but at a much smaller band then the spring. But they are still pretty impressive. I did Half Dome last summer and started in the dark. I heard Vernal Fall before I saw it. Bridalveil will be an ethereal wisp. We have gone for the past several summers - July and August - and those have been my observations. Yosemite Valley is always worthwhile to me. The High Country on Tioga is best enjoyed in August.

Edited: 12 March 2014, 23:09
Dublin, California
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4. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

This year I am afraid the falls will be pretty dry by August.

Washington State
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5. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

This hiking website has some good photos of Vernal Fall in spring yosemitehikes.com/yosemite-valley/mist-trail… and in fall yosemitehikes.com/yosemite-valley/mist-trail…

For me, waterfalls are not the "main attraction" to Yosemite NP. If that's all you want to see, then you'll be unhappy with August. I agree with chinita that Tuolumne Meadows & the Yosemite high country is a fabulous option.

From Washburn Point (just before Glacier Point), you can see Illilouette Fall. Look far to the right. The views of Vernal Fall and Nevada Fall are excellent from Washburn Point or from Glacier Point.

Washington State
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6. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

Merced River always has water. The flow will be very very low, but it hasn't been dry in recorded history. In Oct 1977 it was under 6 cubic feet per second, but it still had water. I'd guess this August will be around 20 cfs; the average for August is 150 cfs. The average for May is 2,370 cfs.

Yosemite Falls is fed by a seasonal stream, Yosemite Creek.

Oregon Coast
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7. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

Great pics, PNWFamily!

"A picture is worth 1,000 words"!

Washington State
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8. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

This Traveler Article about Wawona has three of my photos of Lower Chilnualna Fall, in May,July, and August. tripadvisor.com/Travel-g61000-c196037

It's great that the OP is thinking about water levels and waterfalls. It's interesting that many folks don't think about snowmelt feeding the rivers & streams. Many visitors are surprised that Yosemite Fall is dry in August.

Victor C ~ the water temperature is great for swimming. Of course you need to swim in safe areas, but it's delightful to float in the river and gaze at the scenic beauty.

La Jolla, California
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9. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

Thanks for all the posts and feedback! TripAdvisor is always so helpful (was planning an Alaska trip last summer and people in that forum were similarly friendly!)

Yes, other people in my party do like waterfalls, so I'm trying to take that into account. Personally I like grand vistas and such so we'll definitely be stopping by Sentinel Dome and Taft Point.

Edited: 13 March 2014, 00:15
Santa Clara...
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10. Re: Waterfalls worth visiting in August?

Our family's favorite swimming spot on the Merced River in the valley is at the beach by Stoneman Bridge across from Curry Village. http://goo.gl/maps/shSHw We dip here whilst camping in lieu of the yucky bathhouses.

For grand vista along Tioga, go to Olmsted Point

tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g61000-d45…