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Tuolumne River from the Lyell Canyon Trail, Yosemite National Park

Along the Lyell Canyon Trail at Sunset

This is the first view on the Lyell Canyon trail that's guaranteed to interrupt your reveries. It occurs about three quarters of a mile into the hike, where the trail opens up onto a meadow and a pair of bridges combine to cross the Lyell Fork of the Tuolumne River in the best possible place (above it). If you want the Lyell Canyon trail to supply you with a quick excursion rather than a long hike, this is the most choice destination.

This view faces upstream, which at this point is close to due east. Looming above the horizon on the left is Mammoth Peak (12,117 feet/3,690 meters elevation), which is more recognizable when seen from Dana Meadows, and floating above the horizon on the right is the moon (238,900 miles/384,400 km elevation), which is equally recognizable from nearly anywhere in Yosemite.