Explore June 2020 Options - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

June 2020 Options Map
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Reviews (476)
Photos (1635)
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 13, 2020
Backpacking

Smokey

View Garrett's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 6, 2020
Hiking

Great trail. Strenuous, but doable for most hikers. Challenging in a good way. Very rewarding with amazing views and great places to stop and enjoy.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 6, 2020
HikingBugsNo shadeRocky

Awesome 6.5 hour hike with breaks. Not as smokey as it is nearby in Independence. We started at 7 am and there were a few parking spots left. We tracked 5 miles up to the Pass where you had the option to continue down to the lakes which we did not do so we did 10 miles round trip.

View Allyson's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 26, 2020
FishingGreat!

If you can get a permit do this hike. Hike isnt overly long and thus is easier than some have said. My 9 year old completed and couldn't stop talking about the incredible views. The lakes are great. Did a day hike to Bullfrog which is great as well. Fishing was great at all.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 22, 2020
Hiking
View Marcio's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 22, 2020
Hiking
View Marcio's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 21, 2020
BackpackingGreat!

Wonderful trail. Arrived late Friday night at the trail head and night hiked for about an hour until we reached Casa Vieja Meadows. Only complaint about the meadows was the cows, although I love some beef I don't like it mooing all night! Next day we hiked down to the hot springs and setup camp near one of the abandoned cabins, campsites are great down by the hot springs. Lots of sitting areas and logs to use as tables. The hot springs themselves felt great, the water coming directly from the streams was practically boiling. Highly suggest this trail for any beginners or for a quick weekend trip!

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 20, 2020
Hiking

Awesome hike! Beautiful views. Started at 6am. We hiked to the pass then down to kearsarge lake and jumped in the fresh cool water. We Saw a huge bear down at Kearsarge lake! Trail was good. A lot of switchbacks and definitely a hard push at the end.. I recorded 14.2 total with the extra bit down to the lake. Definitely reccomend! Not for beginners and bring lots of water and sunblock you are exposed to the sun a lot of the time. :))

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 20, 2020
BackpackingGreat!No shadeOff trailOver grownRockyScramble

Background: This trek was amazing. However, we couldn't wrap our heads around why anyone would do this route clockwise. Seriously, like another reviewer said - buck the trend, go counterclockwise, you'll thank us later. Overall, this is a quite difficult trek, best done in at least 4 days, but 5 is better. We were in adequate shape - not great, but not bad. We live at sea level and are pretty experienced backpackers. We broke camp and headed out each morning by 7:00. Day 1 - A shorter day, our first stop was Monarch lake after starting from the trailhead around 11:00. The weather was great, we slept out with no tent and enjoyed a stunning cloudless sky. No mosquitoes either! This stop was ideal while we got acclimated (coming from sea level) and rested before Sawtooth pass. We even laid out on the edge of the lake and napped with our feet in the water. Unless you're in incredible shape, Monarch lake makes for a good first stop. Day 2 - At daybreak, we tackled Sawtooth Pass in the cool morning air. Ascending Sawtooth Pass actually might be the most epic ascent I've ever done - it's treacherous, but it's not the nightmare it's made out to be. Pick your own route up, try to stick close to the All Trails route, look out for cairns, rest and reevaluate often - it's genuinely fun. After the epic views from the top of Sawtooth, the steep descent down to Columbine was welcome - there's a small body of water next to the official Columbine lake that was absolutely idyllic - perfect stop for fresh water and snacks. Heading down through Lost Canyon from Columbine was a nice change of scenery that also brought some welcome shade. We decided to stop at the closest of the Big Five Lakes, which was a good idea for us because we were pretty wiped out from Sawtooth and the steep descents afterward. This was a great stop - like Monarch, bug-free and scenic. We had thought about trying to push on to Little Five lakes to get closer to Blackrock, but it's another couple miles uphill, so we were happy with our choice. Day 3 - The best day of the trip, because this is the day that cements your delight in going counter-clockwise. The ascent up Blackrock after getting up to Little Five Lakes is a little rough, mostly because it's hot and uninspiring - and this is the easy side. It's a tough ascent over tons of sun-blasted rock, and the sun heats it up pretty quickly. However, when you get to the top, you'll shed a tear of sweet relief, because the other side of Blackrock is an absolute monster slog, and you get to fly down it. As you descend, you'll get to smile and wave to all of the poor souls that made the terrible mistake of doing this trek clockwise. After an hour of rapidly descending down that unforgiving pass, you'll meet a weary clockwise hiker that looks at you with a glint of hope in their eyes, gives you a strained smile, and wistfully asks how much farther it is to the top of Blackrock. You'll offer a few hollow words of encouragement, but you know the truth - they've barely even started, and the sun's already high in the sky. The descent down Blackrock lasts for miles, and we continued on past Pinto to make camp at Cliff Creek. This was actually our favorite night - washing up in, and falling asleep next to, a small waterfall there was the perfect last night for our trip. Finally found a few bugs here, but nothing crazy. Day 4 - An uneventful final morning for us, the hike out of that valley was challenging and lasted a while, but it was an amazing trail through miles of lush forest in the cool morning air. Reached the parking lot around 11:00am. Overall, this was one of the most epic trips I've had the pleasure of doing, and also one of the most challenging. Don't be fooled by the 28 mile length - I think 4 days is a good minimum for most people, but in retrospect we would have preferred 5 days to give ourselves a more relaxed pace overall, and to have more time and energy to explore and enjoy the places we made camp. Absolutely loved this route, and shout-out to the reviewers that help us decide to go counter-clockwise!

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 17, 2020
BackpackingGreat!
View Jason's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 16, 2020
Backpacking
View Ross's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 14, 2020
Hiking
View Fred's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
Hiking
View Fred's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
Hiking

The clockwise loop is actually more like 33 miles. We did the loop in 3 days (I don’t recommend that). This was our first backpacking trip and it was brutal but extremely beautiful. Do not go up past Pinto to Black Rock past 4pm, it will be dark by the time you get to the summit and it can be dangerous at that point.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarAugust 10, 2020
HikingNo shadeRocky

The hike to Kearsarge Lakes over the Kearsarge Pass is a good, not great eastern Sierra trail. You’ll start off on the east side of the Sierra Crest, ascending up four miles of hot, sun-exposed switchbacks. While the switchbacks aren’t overly steep on this side, they are relentless and offer no variance in grade. Scenery along this part of the trail is much more reminiscent of the desert wasteland of the Owens Valley beneath you than of typical upper montane forest. This makes for an unpleasant slog, as apart from a couple of nice lakes along the way, the scenery is unchanging and unimpressive, making the hot, dry hike feel like more of a chore, especially at the upper elevation rockfields. However, the scenery improves once over Kearsarge Pass. The views down into Kings Canyon National Park, with the Kearsarge Lakes and Bullfrog Lake backdropped by the Kearsarge Pinnacles, are beautiful. These views become increasingly more intimate as you make your way down the switchbacks to the Kearsarge Lakes. The trail follows the western perimeter of the Kearsarge Lakes, and you can pick any spot along the way to plop down and appreciate the serenity, but note that a shaded spot to relax will be hard to come by. Soak it all in, because you’re going to need all the energy you can get to get back over the pass. Overall, I thought this trail was good. The views over the pass are great, but the trail on the east side of the pass (which is the huge majority of this trail) is hot, dry, entirely sun-exposed with uneventful and unchanging scenery. General Info: Parking is tough. I arrived at 7:30AM on Sunday and got the last spot in the circle. Park on a pullout on Onion Valley road (paved). Permits are required for overnight hiking, but day hiking is free and does not require a permit. Season is from June-early October, but snow may be present in June and starts at high elevations as early as October. Go in late June/early July for the greenest experience.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 9, 2020
Hiking

Amazing trail. Did this as a day hike and it was incredible. The switchbacks are constant and brutal towards the end as you approach Kearsarge Pass. Parking lot was full when I arrived at 8 am. Make sure not to make my mistake and not bring enough water. Definitely hard but doable if you’re prepared. 100% recommend.

View Katelyn's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 7, 2020
Hiking

4 days + is mandatory. First night stay at pinto not lake it’s a marsh (beware of skeeters) it’s the best before you go up black rock. 2nd night stay at one of the little five lakes they’re gorgeous and give you ample protection from the wind. 3rd night and day should be a trek to columbine, stay in the area with the sand don’t be too close to the lake the wind is a killer. 4th day descending sawtooth will scare you but just go slow and you’ll get it done. Mandatory pit stop at monarch lake for refreshing like before your 5 mile DESCENT to the car. -hiking Dave

View David's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 2, 2020
Hiking
View Shelli's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 2, 2020
Hiking
View Shelli's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 1, 2020
Hiking

Mineral King to Five Lakes trail was all time! It was so nice to check-out for a few days and clear my head. This trail had it all, winding trails through whimsical forests, waterfalls, challenging accents, rocky moonscapes, massive canyons, meadows filled with wildflowers, and crystal clear high alpine lakes. I highly recommend doing the loop clockwise.

View Corey's Recording
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 1, 2020
BackpackingGreat!
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