Vernal Fall Photos

Vernal Fall is a wide, majestic waterfall along the Merced River. Although I only have late summer shots, luckily the lower flow during this time lends itself well to long exposure photography. Below are some of my favorite Vernal Fall photos.

Vernal Fall Photos - Summer Flow (Long Exposure), From John Muir Trail
Vernal Fall Late Summer Flow (Long Exposure)

The image above was taken from high on the John Muir Trail. July and August are light flow months, but in my opinion this is better for more detailed long exposure shots. I really do think Vernal Fall is the most scenic and beautiful waterfall in Yosemite.

Top of Vernal Fall, with Water Cascading Over Edge To Valley Below
Top of Vernal Fall, with Water Cascading To Valley Below

Although there is a guard rail, this waterfall is unique because you can hike to the top – right up to the edge! It’s thrilling to watch the water plummet down to the valley floor below.

Waterfalls at the Base

View of Vernal Falls from boulders and smaller waterfalls at the base, late summer
View of Vernal Falls from boulders and smaller waterfalls below

While Vernal Fall is captivating in its own right, even the smaller waterfalls around the base are nice to (carefully) explore and photograph. Again, during a higher flow time of year you won’t get nice long exposure shots like this (and it’s much more dangerous to even be in this area).

Small, scenic waterfall & boulders near base

I loved the big, scenic boulders the Merced River flows over here. By the way, these photos were taken along the Mist Trail. Without a doubt, it’s one of the most scenic and popular hikes in Yosemite, though you have to work for it!

Vernal Fall Photos From Glacier Point

Vernal Fall Photos - Zoomed in From Glacier Point, summer flow
Vernal Fall Zoomed in From Glacier Point

Surprisingly, the photo above was taken from very far away, nearby Glacier Point. Although it was also taken in July, the flow was a bit heavier during this particular year. This is another long exposure photo, and to me, this flow level is just right.

By the fall months of September and October, this waterfall dries up and slows to a trickle. Waterfalls are one of Yosemite’s main attractions, so plan your trip accordingly!

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About My Photos

The images on this website are available for licensing and/or sale as framed prints. If you’d like to purchase them for a blog, news article, or gift, feel free to contact me with the specifics. This way you’re supporting photographers such as me directly (as opposed to buying from a faceless stock photo corporation).

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– Nathan Allen

About Me

Photographer Nathan Allen

I’m Nathan Allen, photographer / creator of (Yosemite Photos) and international travel site I Dreamed Of This. In truth, I lived in San Francisco, New York, & Singapore…but nothing compares to life in the mountains. I share my experiences HERE.