California Highway 4

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Highway 4

The scenic section of California Highway 4 winds from Arnold to Markleeville along a stretch of the Sierra Nevada Mountains that offers incredible panoramic views and plenty of outdoor recreation.

  • Get panoramic views along California Highway 4 between Arnold and Markleeville
  • This 61-mile scenic drive is not far from Yosemite
  • Visit Calaveras Big Trees State Park along the way
  • Raft the rivers along this route for some thrilling vacation experiences
  • Stop at Grover Hot Springs and take a dip

Overview

Highway 4, from Arnold, California to Markleeville, south of Lake Tahoe, is a mountainous path taking you through a part of the Sierra Nevada Mountains that you shouldn’t miss when visiting Yosemite National Park. Ascend Ebbetts Pass; enjoy a multitude of outdoor adventures.

Driving Directions

To get to Highway 4 CA from Yosemite Park, head west on Highway 120 out of the park, traveling about 40 miles to Highway 49. After three miles you’ll bear right Highway 108 to Highway 49 once again. In 11.7 miles you’ll reach California Highway 4 in Arnold.

Follow Highway 4 between Arnold and Markleeville to enjoy one of the most scenic routes in the country.

Time/Distance

Your trip on Highway 4 California is about 61 miles of pure beauty, and takes about one hour and seven minutes to drive, one way.

Highlights

Hwy 4 offers the travelers many sights to see along the way. Here are only a few:

  • Calaveras Big Trees State Park
    Here you will find a number of trails for hiking and biking, and two campgrounds where you can sleep out under the stars.
  • The North Fork Stanislaus River
    Close to Calaveras Big Trees State Park and Dorrington, California, off of Highway 4, you’ll find a great stretch of river for Class IV rafting. Experienced rafters and kayakers love it here, not only for the challenging waters, but also because of the spectacular scenery.
  • Lake Alpine
    A network of trails invites you out into the forest around Lake Alpine. It’s a great hiking destination. You can also paddle on the sparkling waters, or fish for trout.
  • Ebbetts Pass
    The views are breathtaking! Pacific Crest Trail crosses at the pass, and if you are there at the right time, you may get to see one of the top bicycling events in the country, the Tour of the California Alps Death Ride. Riders climb five mountain passes in one day.
  • Grover Hot Springs State Park
    Biking and hiking are popular here, with 279 miles of trails to enjoy. But you can’t miss the hot springs bathing either! You’ll also find a campground in case you want to spend the night.
  • The East Fork Carson River
    This scenic river has a tame stretch of Class II whitewater just east of Markleeville. And if you love to fly fish, you can try your hand at catching some of the wild trout.

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