Clouds Rest is a colossal granite formation with striking prominence. At 9,926 ft, it is not nearly the tallest mountain in Yosemite, but it’s close proximity and unobstructed perch above Yosemite Valley provides spectacular views and a unique vantage of both the high country and the valley. In a 360 degree panorama, one can gaze over to Half Dome, the Clark Range, Tuolumne Meadows. The most impressive feature of Clouds Rest is its northwest face, an immense granite slab polished by glaciers and descending 5,000 ft below to the base of Tenaya Canyon. One can gain the summit of Clouds Rest by two trail routes:
- Via the Sunrise Lakes Trailhead (~8,160 ft) along Tioga Road: A 14.5 roundtrip hike; ~2,000 ft of elevation gain
- Via Happy Isles in Yosemite Valley (4,105 ft): 20 miles roundtrip; 6,000+ ft elevation gain.