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Backpacking Map

this trail was fantastic! I'm an avid trail runner and this trail did not disappoint. Nice steady climbs with very runnable sections. the down hill was pretty sweet. It was nice to get up among some pines. I want to come back and do the 20 mile loop!

Ok ... no real review but to note road closed (far from trailhead) for THREAT of snow 01/12/19

Ummm. I thought it was strenous due the distance. It's a climb. Not super steep but it's a constant incline all the way up. It was challenging but doable on the way up and not too bad on knees and toes on the way down. Great prep. for those higher elevation peaks. The trail is really easy to follow. Great views. It was beautiful and chilly today.

Great Hike! Lots of different terrains as you gain elevation. Went early morning and we didn't see another person until we got back to the trailhead. There was ice and a bit of snow towards the top, and some of the drier terrain wasn't very compacted so wear shoes with good traction. Bring lots of water, I'd recommend at least 2 liters because there is so much incline. But, didn't find it too hard at all, great for those getting into longer distance day hikes. Saw lots of mountain lion tracks which was neat. Also lots of amazing views. The trail was well maintained and we made great time. Definitely paid off!

Went on it with a few friends a few days ago, beautiful hike does get a bit chilly but bring a jacket this time of year, be prepared bring water. I 100% recommend this hike to anyone and be careful with the ground at this time towards the top it’s iced over in the mornings

This is a beautiful trail. The incline is not very challenging so the distance was doable in about 5 hours round trip. If you go during the winter, bring gloves, and scarf and hat. The wind makes it very chilly and there’s snow in the shaded areas.

Nice hike on clean, well-maintained trails. Have to walk from parking and through the campsite to get to the trail. Alltrails has Dripping Springs as a Moderate hike but Natl Park Svc rates it strenuous. Probably more moderate as anyone in avg shape should have no problem.

Depends on the time we here you though it can be very nice or very buggy!

2 months ago

The trail is in great condition for the 3.5 miles we hiked (7 mile round trip). Lovely views of Temecula Valley and Vail Lake as we came back down to the campground.

Solid overall hike! Also can confirm that while it is a bit tight at the top with vegetation, I had no real trouble getting through and is currently very accessible. Only negative is the parking lot is a decent distance to the actual trailhead.

I’m ok shape, middle age, 20 lb pack. Got to Summit Trailhead at 2:00 Friday. Camped about 2 miles from Lakes at 5:00. Saturday hiked around all three lakes and back to car by 3:00.

Middle Lake is prettiest. Some snow, a few hunters. Very similar to Dinkey, Cliff and Jenny Lakes, but no other people.

3 months ago

Very solid loop trail. Because of the Notches/desert view points, it's probably a 4.5 hike. Also the Tram itself is awesome (an amazing ride).
Need to stop at the ranger station for a permit (free), even for day hikers.
A little rocky, but there are worse rocky situations. No bouldering.
See all the views at the Mountain/Tram Station itself (Grubbs view point is probably the best of all "notches/camera spots").
Good selection of beers at the Tram Station.

Hike of a lifetime! My best backpacking experience so far.
We didn't resupply during our trip and it made the first few days extremely difficult, until our packs got a bit lighter - think about it twice before you commit to the fully autonomous mode! Also make sure you have a plan B in case your water filter breaks on day 2... but we were lucky and none of us got sick even after drinking unfiltered water from rivers and lakes for two weeks.

Check out our trip video at Trail Perspective on YouTube:
& https://youtu.be/GLPpZOIsYAg

Did a section of the JMT from Happy Isles to Rush Creek (Near Reds Meadow) in September. Crazy gorgeous section of the trail, wish we could've had the time to go all the way to Whitney. My favorite part of this section was the last part of Donahue Pass to Thousand Island Lake.

Went today the road was rough going to the camp before hitting the trail head. For the exercise it was a good trail but the many rocks in the trail kills your feet. One good spot half way features a rock out cropping an falls but its off the trail just a bit. I would rather stop there if i did this trail again..The drive going up made the trip not well worth it. Did see a group of pheasants near the last mile and half of the trail.

I did this trail in August with my best friend and it was awesome! It was hard of course, but the weather was almost perfect the whole time. There were a couple rain/hail storms but that was about it. Mosquitos only bothered us a few times, and it wasn't that bad. We did 21 days with three resupplies at Red's Meadow, Muir Trail Ranch, and Independence. Muir Trail Ranch was a disappointment with no services other than picking up our buckets, and we realized later that we should have done Vermillion Valley instead as many hikers said they had an awesome experience.

Directions to trailhead put you in a neighborhood with no trail access. Eaton Canyon trail is nearby though so we went there

4 months ago

Very rough overgrown trail with lots of obstacles. Easy to lose the path but just follow the creekbed down and you will reach the Kern. Look for stacked rocks to keep on the trail. Lots of wonderful rock formations and desert wildlife.

Trail is open!!

5 months ago

Pretty nice hike. Drove up Friday night and slept maybe a mile before the trailhead. The road getting to the trailhead was rougher than I expected. Some decent sized rocks. I saw a sedan at the trailhead so I guess any car could make it, but there was a piece of a broken off skid plate from a car up there too. We left Saturday morning and it took us about 5 hours to get there. It’s mostly shaded and the trail is well defined. Some meadows and flowers. The lakes are very pretty plenty of good campsites. The upper lake reminded me of something out of a fairy tale. It’s small with a tiny island and a single funny looking tree. We stayed the night and made it back in 4.5 hours. Overall it’s a really nice hike!

longer than indicated. full sun exposure towards the top.

Nice trail for a moderate hike. Partly shady.

6 months ago

I hiked the JMT solo starting from Yose Valley in 2015, but got off the trail in mile 180 (Kearsarge Pass Jct) because of ankle and knee injuries. In 2015, I resupplied twice: Reds Meadow and Muir Trail Ranch (estimated 9 days of food until Whitney Portal). I finished the last 31 miles in 2016 starting from Cottonwood Lakes to Kearsarge Pass (it’s about 72 miles including Mt. Whitney, Lake Charlotte, and Kearsarge Pass Trail). I didn’t resupply for this 7 day hike. Final thoughts about the JMT: challenging, nonetheless it was an amazing experience. Easier to get a permit going NOBO than. SOBO. Trail is easy to navigate in low snow year, plenty of water sources on the trail, mozzies are relentless in July, beautiful views, mountains and lakes for days, and great people on the trail.

Transportation set up: I left my car in Lone Pine and hitched a ride to Yose for my 2015 hike and to Horseshoe Meadows trailhead in 2016. Getting back to my car from Kearsarge Pass, I hired a shuttle service to take me back to Lone Pine. Reasonable rate.

I loved this hike! Lots of shade to cool under and it’s a quiet hike. This place is beautiful! No one was on the trail when I went so all I was able to hear was the animals in the bushes, birds chirping and lizards moving around. The first time getting here I didn’t know there was a $5 day fee. I ended up just getting a annual pass all year so I can go back here. The camping spots are very pretty. Some have huge spots available with great shade!

6 months ago

Beautiful trail, and we were the only ones on it. But even with long sleeves and bug spray, we were walking in a cloud of gnats, esp the first mile, which took a lot of enjoyment away, especially for my kids (6 and 10)

Also you really can't access the creek except at crossings as the embankment is pretty steep

6 months ago

I loved this trail!! There were so many bugs and mosquitoes so taking bug spray is a must!!! The end of the trail is amazing, their is so many ladybugs, it was pretty cool seeing that.... overall pretty good trail. The only thing i wanna say is, when driving up to the the trailhead like the last 2 miles in order to get their you gotta drive through this unpaved road and its pretty rocky!!! I don’t advice to take a low vehicle

6 months ago

Got an early start on a Sunday. Rode the tram up to the trailhead. Fair amount of day hikers and rock climbers. But after I got to Round Valley the crowd thinned out. Nice uphill hike. Not too bad. I went counterclockwise and had about 45lb pack. Took plenty of rests and enjoyed the scenery. Glad there was a trickle of water at RV ranger station. I climbed the trail to Lotus campsite. Nice ridge to camp. About 4 nice level spots. Cool breeze too. But the wind died down at dusk. Very peaceful sleeping that time of year (July). Nice views east towards the desert and Salton Sea. Very relaxing and some nice areas to explore too. Broke camp Tuesday morning. Very nice hike back to the tram, all down hill, until you get to the tram station. That last hump on the pavement to the station was kinda tuff. Nice facilities at the station, restaurant, bar, snacks, good way to end the trip. Ranger Bill and Jerry were so helpful and friendly.

6 months ago

Lovely loop that lets you hike the Mt. San Jacinto area yet stay relatively close to the Tram station. The trail head begins at the sign behind the ranger's station where you must fill out a permit. The permit is free, but be sure to get one. The fine, if you're caught without one, is expensive ($450). At the sign, you have to choose if your going to go left (clockwise) or right (counter clockwise). Going clockwise will be steeper, yet shorter ascent to the High Country trail. It will be a tough climb if you're not in shape. Plenty of rocks and boulders to sit and rest if needed. Counter clockwise the hike to the High Country trail will be about twice as long, but the ascent not nearly as steep. You can also explore the surrounding area off this trail such as Round Valley and the Willow Creek Trail. Be sure to drop off the copy of your permit before heading back up to the the Tram station.

7 months ago

Nice views hiking up. Getting to the water is the best part and following the unmaintained trail for a bit leads to some neat spots. Went in early June and parts of the trail were littered with ladybugs just done hibernating.

My favorite place. Easy hike from shake camp along the Tule river, lots of water. The trail crosses the river maybe three times, The last three miles is up, after the switch backs there is summit lake. After catching Brook trout and turning in for the night we wake up and head out over sheep mountain, up then down to twin lakes, after a nice break its Maggie. Maggie is awesome, three lakes to play with, trout fishing is ok. Nights are nice, afternoons are nicer, naps in my hammock was very nice. Bears, deer, coyotes. Scouting the area fishing the creeks below for Golden Trout, then packing out the trail to quaking aspen cause its shorter. The pack station at Balch park, is why the trail to summit lake and Maggie is open, not the Forrest service, there was no trail from twin to Maggie after the fire, I was there and the pack station new where it used to be and made the trail to Maggie. I would also tell you to have them pack you into Maggie in a day, stay longer with extra food, then backpack out and enjoy. Its an easy trip, plenty of water sources, and ok fishing. I would recommend this for first time and seasoned packers all. Depends what time of year, mosquito head net is a must, and I use mosquito wipes, they work ok for a while. I like the pictures here, I saw the rocks I made around my tent in the pics. You must have went after I did, what happened to the big yellow pot with lid? I found it at one of the old camps, brought it to mine, used it to boil water for dishes and clothes and stuff.

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