With less notoriety and fewer visitors than nearby Glacier Point, Taft Point is the other vista precipice that sits on Yosemite’s south rim. Rising 3,500 feet above the valley floor, Taft Point is actually 300 feet taller than Glacier Point. The absence of guardrails gives this granite promontory more of a wild and exposed feeling than its counterpart located a couple miles east down Glacier Point Road.
Taft Point offers one of the better views of western Yosemite Valley and of the vertical granite walls of famed El Capitan. Before reaching Taft Point proper, you may notice deep vertical gashes in the granite near the cliff's edge that drop through the rock providing views to the floor a more than a thousand feet below. These notable landmarks are called The Fissures. The exposure around both Taft Point and The Fissures is no joke; take caution near the edge.
To access Taft Point, park at the Sentinel Dome/Taft Point Trailhead and head west, following the signs for Taft Point and The Fissures. After a half mile of forest hiking you’ll emerge on the southern rim and confirm for yourself whether or not you harbor any fear of heights. Another option is to take a longer hike via the Sentinel Dome - Taft Point Loop. The car accessed routes to Taft Point are only accessible when Glacier Point Road is open beyond Badger Pass Ski Area, typically May through October. Exact timing will vary due to weather. Check with the park for status on road openings/closures.