Good news: Glacier Point Road opens Thursday, May 11, 2017, at 9:00 a.m.
The bad news: The trails are still covered in snow and are poorly defined. Every year, hikers get lost due to trail conditions, especially in the Sentinel and Taft Point areas.
The Panorama Trail is open all the way to the top, but the top half of the Four Mile Trail is closed. Therefore, the popular Panorama/Four Mile Loop is not possible and hikers coming up the Panorama Trail will need to return by the same route.
The Four Mile Trail is closed for your safety due to ice sheets on the trail. One hiker already lost his life this year on the upper Four Mile Trail due to a long fall off an icy section of trail. Please do not interpret closed gates and closure signs as mere suggestions.
Following are several tips when visiting Glacier Point before the trails are snow free:
- As always, leave your hiking plan, including route, destination, and return time, with a trusted person.
- Glacier Point is currently under winter travel conditions and anyone who hikes it should have good wayfinding skills, including a suitable topo map and compass (GPS optional).
- Following footprints in the snow or rock cairns is a risky business; they may belong to someone else – who also got lost.
- ALWAYS pay attention to your back route and ALWAYS be able to return from the way you came.
- If you’re unsure of your route going forward, turn around and go back.