Hike Distance: 2 - 4 miles (3.2 - 6.4 km) round trip for a just-to-smell-the-flowers excursion;
9 miles (14.4 km) round trip to Hite Cove
Trailhead Elevation: 1,900 feet (580 meters)
Total Elevation Gain: 100 feet (30 meters)
Map Notes: The Hite Cove trail follows the South Fork of the Merced River upstream for its entire route - a happy choice, since the Merced, consummately lazy as only a river can be, is content to take the path of least resistance and doesn't climb over high passes or engage in mountaineering of any sort. This map highlights the route all the way to Hite Cove itself; if you're just out to sample the wildflowers, you only need to hike about half this trail - certainly no farther than the corner where the trail turns east.
The trailhead (marked by the giant green hikers) is about 7 miles (11 km) west of Yosemite's El Portal entrance on Highway 140. If you click the zoom-out button twice, you'll see Yosemite's western edge appear on the right side of the map.