Explore Bishop - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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hiking
9 days ago

This is a good beginner’s hike to introduce you to the elevation and the beauty of the John Muir Wilderness.
For this hike you will need to park in the North Lake Hiker Parking lot. Next follow the dirt road southwest to the North Lake Campground and once in the campground locate the trailhead next to the public restrooms.
This trail leads to Lamarck Lake also, but after about 0.75 mi. you’ll see the Grass Lake option on your left (south) and after .25 mi. you’ll arrive at the lake.
Along the way, enjoy the great experience of the wilderness as you pass rolling streams serenaded by swaying branches… a great introduction to the area!

Breathtaking, stunning, wonderful. Lake 2 is nice if you need to get back. Bring your camera!

Hard work for a Great view, winter conditions require you to bring show shoes and spikes once you near First Lake.

This was one of the best trails I’ve ever done. August 2017. Still holds true today.

backpacking
1 month ago

I did a couple of nights on the trail and opted for the counterclockwise route from Black Lake to First Lake (~20 miles with all the side trips). Less crowded campsites are Fifth Lake and Summit Lake. Explored all the seven lakes including Black Lake and Summit Lake. Reserved permits are hard to come by, but easy to obtain walk-in permits in October

backpacking
1 month ago

One of my favorite short trails! Gorgeous mountain and lake views with abundant water sources (passing through seven lakes in 3.5 miles)! Nice campsites along Heart Lake, Chickenfoot Lake and Gem Lake. Fishing is good in most lakes. Perfect for older dogs. Very crowded and hard to find parking during summer. Permits are hard to come by, but walk-ins are very doable.

Beautiful lake views as you go with stunning snow capped mountains in the distance. Truly an invigorating hiking experience!

backpacking
1 month ago

Backpacked one night (Dec. 1-2nd). This was my third time on this trail. I was hoping to reach the top of the first lake, between the first and second, to get a good morning photo. I got a late start and the snow kept me from even making the first lake. I ended up camping at the Cabin and didn't have enough time to continue on. Can't say what the conditions are after the Cabin, but expect deeper snow. It was about knee deep in most places and deeper after the first falls. Its all fresh snow and soft.
Overall amazing trail in summer and winter. Temps were around 1-5F at night with a negative wind chill, but the wind died down. It was about 11F this morning around 8am. Nice easy hike down after plowing.

I was wearing outer shells and snow shoes. I'll post some pics. Happy backpacking.

Recent snowfall from Nov 29/30 will make your trek longer if you decide to do the full loop...not sure what the conditions look like as I only hiked a mile in to scope out the trail and will return in the spring! It is gorgeous. If someone does the full loop with the current snow let us know the conditions and time!

Pretty lakes & mountains with snow caps

hiking
1 month ago

Easy but beautiful trail. All I want to see is the second lake!

hiking
1 month ago

I LOVED this hike. It's about 11 mi round trip if you go to lakes 1-3. We went on November 23 which was the day after the first snowfall, and it was gorgeous -- I could see it getting slippery in certain places once the snow has a chance to melt and refreeze a couple of times. Nothing insurmountable, but hiking poles could be helpful in the winter.

As far as the level of hike -- I was bracing myself because people have been citing it as a pretty challenging hike, but there was not any particularly challenging moment -- the distance makes it tiring and by the end I was feeling my legs running out of steam, but neither my partner nor I are overly active (we've recently been doing a 2-3 mile hike maybe once a week and yoga maybe once or twice a week, in addition to daily walks with our dog) and it was totally doable with enough water, snacks, and layers. The way up is pretty consistently uphill, but you're not climbing boulders the whole time or anything; it's just a mountain!

Timing -- I think that for the average healthy person, 7-8 hours is probably a good amount of time to give the hike if you want to stop for photos, food, exploration. We left just before 8:30, got to the 1st lake around 11 AM, meandered to the 2nd and 3rd lakes and back to the 1st again, stopped for some food and chatting (and some dog play between our dogs and other awesome dogs on the trail), and were on our way down around 12:45, then back to the car by 3 PM.

I can't wait to come back and see how the lakes look in other seasons. Can't recommend this hike enough.

Stunning hike but we got a bit lost between Lakes 5-7 as the ground was covered in snow and we couldn’t find the trails (hiked November 24th). Might be advisable to turn around after lake 3 in snowy conditions if you’re not familiar with the route.

hiking
2 months ago

This was the perfect hike! A little challenging due to the distance and carrying about 25 pounds, but definitely doable. It was a gradual incline so nothing too brutal. After the first mile, you are walking next to a beautiful river the entire time. Got to see a waterfall, then Lon Cheney’s cabin, and then the lakes were gorgeous. We only made it to lake 2 due to time, but we will be back to do the entire thing. HIGHLY recommend, one of my favorite hikes.

This was perhaps one of my favorite hikes yet in the Sierras . With a rather brisk morning start and a brilliant fall sun to warm our dispositions, my wife and I trekked to 9 lakes, some were frozen over and cracking loudly, water falls, beautiful high country meadows and mountain pass and at Chocolate Peak ridge were treated to the sun glistening off of Ruwau Lake, Treasure Lakes and Long Lake all in the same view. The elevation gain is moderate on this hike however be prepared to climb through and up a talus field to get to the ridge just before Ruwau Lake. After that it’s all down hill returning to South Lake. Definitely will do this one again!

Easy and stunning hikes. Mid November all the lakes were frozen too, hard enough to walk on when we were there. Can’t wait to go back and do the whole thing

Rewarding hike for mind and body...beautiful views... great trail. Lots of switchbacks between 9000 and 10000 feet, definitely a challenge as an infrequent hiker from the East coast.

Great hike up. Was disappointed that there was not a good view into the next basin. The last steep part was the most lovingly cared for trail I have seen in years.

backpacking
2 months ago

Four of us did this as a backpacking overnight this weekend, and for 3 of us it was our first time backpacking. We made it to the 2nd lake in 4 1/2 hours with packs and lots of breaks (we are in average shape.. only some of us hike regularly).
This trail was challenging and rewarding for a first time hiking with 20+ lb bags (we only hiked to the 2nd lake to camp and explored a few more lakes the next day). The trail is a very steady incline with some big stone steps here and there, but with trekking poles it was doable, even at altitude (I would describe it as "challenging" but far from "brutal"). What was somewhat brutal was camping in below 15 degrees ( my thermometer read closer to 10 than 15 at one point in the evening). Sleeping in the cold was not fun, but the sun really warmed us up in the morning.
On Saturday morning there was smoke from a forest fire which made the visibility poor, which was a bit discouraging, but we decided to go for it anyway. To the guy who said to us "Have fun breathing in smoke all night"... just so you know the wind came through and blew out all of the smoke that afternoon. We had perfectly clear weather that night and the next day.

hiking
2 months ago

Warning: if you’re out of shape. Beginner hiker. Please be prepared. Allow yourself and your group plenty of time to reach the lakes before it starts getting dark. This trail is hard for beginners like myself. I started off the trail at 630am. It took my group almost 5 and a half hours to get to the first lake. The second lake is just a short distance away. Maybe 10-15mins after the first lake. The views are amazing! Well worth the pain coming up and going down. It took 3 and a half hours to get back to the parking lot from the second lake.

Incredible hike and views!! Highly recommend. Be sure to take note of your turns and trailheads, as there are a lot of offshoot trails and it could be easy to take the wrong path on the way back!

hiking
2 months ago

Did all seven Lakes in one day, kind along but definitely worth it. The 1st mile or so it’s kind of cool but after you make that first thousand foot climb and hit the first lake the scenery is amazing. My favorite is fourth lake as it just kind of comes up on you thru a shirt spur off the main trail. Temple Crag is obviously the sight to see. Will def come back and head the Glacier Lake trail.

backpacking
2 months ago

Unreal view of temple crag at second lake. Best backpacking trip to date

Starts in the desert and progressively climbs into the mountains. There's some stunning views early on but the real rewards come when you start hitting the lakes. Lake 2 in particular is absolutely incredible. Temple Crag is one of the most breathtaking sights I've ever seen.

The hike up to the lake was very tough, at least for me, maybe I’m out of shape lol. As soon as we got to the lake we caught fish. The Brook Trouts were kind of small, but I’m sure there are some larger fish. Between the four of us, we caught thirteen fish within an hour. This lake is absolutely beautiful I’m so glad we decided to do this.

Found GoPro on this trail today, Saturday October, 27. Contact me if it yours.
Trail is great, i would rate it Moderate comparing to Kearsarge pass for example. You probably have another week to catch the fall colors. Winter is coming...

Beautiful hike! Continued on to Chicken Foot for a total of 6 miles. A new favorite! 5 lakes, multiple streams, craggy Mountain Views. Fascinating geology all around and plenty of photo ops!

Outstanding hike and views! We missed the fall color up here but still well worth the trip!

I found the trail more difficult than I expected, but that may be because the trail is at nearly 11,000 ft. The trail is very well maintained and the views spectacular. Seeing the oldest living things on Earth , the Bristlecone pines, are awe inspiring. The trail is really about 4.3 miles but I forgot to start recording at the beginning of the trail.

A beautiful hike and over almost every ridge there is another lake. With the jagged peaks, green meadows with wildflowers, lakes and streams this hike has everything you could ask for.

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