“Contemplating the lace-like fabric of streams outspread over the mountains, we are reminded that everything is flowing -- going somewhere, animals and so-called lifeless rocks as well as water. Thus the snow flows fast or slow in grand beauty-making glaciers and avalanches; the air in majestic floods carrying minerals, plant leaves, seeds, spores, with streams of music and fragrance; water streams carrying rocks both in solution and in the form of mud particles, sand, pebbles, and boulders. Rocks flow from volcanoes like water from springs, and animals flock together and flow in currents modified by stepping, leaping, gliding, flying, swimming, etc. While the stars go streaming through space pulsed on and on forever like blood globules in Nature’s warm heart.”
-- John Muir, My First Summer in the Sierra (Sierra Club Books, 1988--first published in 1911)
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Many of our spring hikes feature waterfalls, since snowmelt -- along with spring showers -- tend to make waterfalls especially spectacular at this time of year.
This year’s snowmelt was minimal, given the relatively snowless winter we had, but we’ve still received enough rain to keep the waterfalls reasonably “well-fed.”
For anyone who appreciates or loves waterfalls (is there anyone reading this who doesn’t?), April and May are two not-to-be-missed months for hiking.
This year we have no fewer than 7 waterfall hikes in April, and 4 more waterfall hikes in May, plus other hikes that include big streams and rushing rivers with rapids.
What’s the appeal of moving water, especially in the form of waterfalls? It seems to be something that's wired into us, perhaps related to the fact that water is essential to life, that we’re basically made of water, and that we can’t live long without it.
To most of us, naturally-flowing water is incredibly beautiful – in fact, irresistible. Listening to it is totally mesmerizing. It can put us into something of a trance.
We’re fortunate to have access to literally dozens of wild waterfalls in our area. I won’t single out any favorites here, but I think most of the ones we visit are pretty impressive.
To see what's coming up, take a look at our Trip Schedule. Some waterfall hikes are likely to fill early, so reserving soon is highly recommended.