Explore the most popular horseback riding trails in Inyo National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great day hike, took the Sherwin Lake trail, past Sherwin Lake, then to a small pond coming down from Valentine Lake, finally up to the actual Lake. There are two sets of switchbacks, early in the trail then on the top of the trail right before the lake. River coming down the lake is a great place to refuel water (we have a water filter pump). Just a little snow but not an issue. My GPS had us at 10.5 miles in and back with moderate altitude gain.

hiking
20 days ago

Did this one June 2nd. Great hike with awesome views at the lake, perfect for a lunch / mid point refuel. A little bit of snow on the trail towards the top, but no hazard at all. My GPS clocked this at 10.5 miles and 2,300 ft of gain

fishing
20 days ago

Trail is 98% passable now. Boots only touched snow a handful of times and those patches were very small and easily passable

Well marked trail, easy to follow. Several large trees have fallen across the trail and there are places where the brush needs to be cut back. The stream crossings: At Casa Vieja you can almost jump the water, the next one down the canyon is quite easy with some good flat rocks, the third crossing is a bit more challenging, the fourth crossing is a real challenge if you want to keep you feet dry.

Overall a real joy going in, and a real workout climbing out.

backpacking
24 days ago

Did this 5/27-28/18 and there was snow along the last 1/4 mile. We got hit with a little rain and sleet once we got to Lost Lake, but kept going once it died down a little. The switchbacks at the top were not visible, so we followed the footsteps in the snow along the stream made by previous hikers, which also meant a higher grade climb. With our pack weight, we would sometimes posthole or slip on the icy snow. We saw groups of day hikers having trouble navigating through the snow, also. It would likely help to have shoe chains next time. Once at the top, you have to cross the stream to get to a few good camp spots. Go higher up away from the lake to find some clearings. We found a good spot to camp about 150 feet up, with views of the surrounding mountains and even the town of Mammoth in the distance. We couldn't travel far parallel to the lake due to marshy ground and large boulders. The lake was partially frozen on top. At night we heard a choir of what may have been the endangered yellow-legged mountain frogs, which was cool. We only saw one other backpacker camping at the lake, and not many people coming up on our way back down. Also had cell phone reception at the lake. We started at the Valentine Lake trailhead, which is east of the Sherwin Lake trailhead, and is approximately 4.5 miles each way. This was a relatively short hike, but strenuous at the top with the snow.

Did an out and back of 17 miles (to Owens Peak saddle). Loved the views and space, really recommend the walk. Was planning to try the saddle up the peak but the rain came and my tired legs voted to turn around instead!

hiking
1 month ago

Just hiked on 5-22-18 trail is in great condition right up until the final switchbacks start going up to valentine lake. There are none, because it’s covered in snow. The track goes straight up so bring your micro spikes and get ready. It’s tough but short. Lake is still mostly frozen. Incredible hike with so many highlights I could go on forever. Rained on me and my dog the whole way back with a hale storm thrown in to boot!

nice and easy trail with beautiful views!

I have spent time on several sections of the pct the section between Kennedy meadows campground and mt. Whitney is absolutely beautiful.

me and five of my Grandchildren did this hike going in was fun ,lot of work coming out ,but we're talking about doing it again. My age hope I can

Good early spring hike when other trails in the area are still under snow. POOR signage though. We parked in Paradist the well marked trailhead and hiked up the creek. TRAIL is well maintained and is a good sunny day hike if you are seeking some shade.

Very nice up the North Fork Trail. We hiked until the snow was too deep just before First Lake.

I have hiked this trail 5 or 6 times. The trail is fairly steep at times, and narrow in a few spots. The last time I did this hike was in 2014 with my wife and son. I was excited to show them the mine shaft and all the other mining equipment. I was disapointed when I saw that the shaft had been collapsed or collapsed on its own. It is still a gorgeous hike, and one I hope to take a few more times.

Beautiful hike in winter conditions (Jan 1-2 2018)
50% snow and ice currently to 7300 ft. Trail is showing wear and needs a little love but is still easy to follow. Variety of water crossings from solid ice, logs and requiring boot removal and getting wet. Campsite near the springs is comfy with easy water access and a built up fire ring.

Great hike with beautiful fall color near Lundy Lake. Historical remnants were interesting and added a desolate vibe to the area.

7-28-17 Awesome trail. I went past the turnaround point on this map. I went about a 1/4 mile past the 2nd big water crossing (8.2 miles round trip) past the body of water on the map, starting at around 7800 feet finishing around 9184 ft, it gradually climbs with a few rest (flat) area's. Most of the trail is open (No shade), and you walk through some aspen groves. The snow melt is insane now and the water crossings are epic. The first 2 are easy and not to deep if you decide to forge the water, but easily kept dry by staying on the rocks. The big water crossing isn't bad, but the bridge is washed out, still passable with a small log at the end to get you across. A mile or so after that will get you to the big beaver dam. There is a 2nd big water crossing with half the bridge washed out (1 of 2 logs left). There is a small tree trunk someone has placed to help you get across. It is slippery but not impossible to cross. Water is cold, deep and flowing fast, so cross at your own risk.

The trail mostly consists of dirt, gravel, and rocks. BRING SOME TYPE OF BUG REPELLANT! The mosquitoes are insane! I was eaten alive! There are pack mules on this trail so be aware of "road apples". Bring lots of water and lunch and it's a great hike!

Hiked for 6 days sobo during early September in 2017. exit at Kennedy Meadow. The water is just OK. The view is good, though not very beautiful... The trail is relatively easy compared to the Sierra part, I like it.

backpacking
8 months ago

Fantastic scenery and great backpack trip. I did North Lake to South lake using this loop

Easy after lunch hike with amazing scenery. Trail goes on as far and high as you want.

backpacking
9 months ago

Magical hike with barely any foot traffic. The trail is all uphill to the lake (and conversely all downhill back to the trailhead). Tough hike but well worth the stunning views of the lake and the valley at the top of the trail. We brought our pup and spent the night by the lake. We went on Labor Day weekend and were pleasantly surprised at how quit the trail was...Only saw a handful of people each day. Definitely check it out if you are looking for a challenging day hike or an overnight backpacking trip.

Beautiful hike! Long and worth it. Awesome trees and we saw a bald eagle fly over and land on a tree. Gorgeous!

Very nice hike with amazing views. We had good weather except for a brief rain shower but the other than that beautiful. Would not mind getting back out and doing it again. We didn't go over the pass to Tully's lake but would like to do it sometime.

Nice hike past two beautiful lakes. Mosquitoes were not too bothersome. You need to cross a stream to get to nice part of Valentine. Flowing to fast for my dog to make it ove

hiking
10 months ago

Well made switchbacks makes the climb easy

Beautiful views. We could see the smoke in the valley.

backpacking
10 months ago

Tough hike, lots of elevation gain/loss, but its worth it all for the beautiful views and scenery!

hiking
10 months ago

It was one of the stranger hikes I've been on for sure! I was enjoying the amazing scenery when I came upon a couple fornicating on the big log near the marina turnoff. The rest of the walk was uneventful but I did come across at least 3 piles of human feces. I was warned about that but didn't believe it. Have respect!

A dull hike with spectacular vistas on both side of the ridge...the trail is above tree line and in the sun.

10 months ago

Beautiful but...
As stated previously, the two first Creek crossings are very challenging, especially with full packs where balance may be an issue. Still very high flows, so don't take any risks. Expect to get wet.
Mosquitoes above first crossing bad, and get worse as you go up in elevation. I'm no wimp when it comes to mosquitoes, but when we were up there during the last weekend in July, it was pretty much unbearable. And it never let up at night - I was getting swarmed even at midnight. Of course, this is likely to reduce substantially later in the season, assuming it dries out a bit.
But the wildflowers were awesome! The water was cascading everywhere, and it was good to see all the snow so late in the year.
Have fun!

backpacking
11 months ago

Spent 3 nights at Oneida Lake with a college roommate from 1973. Beautiful setting with excellent fishing for brook and raunbow trout. Explored the Lundy Mine, high above Oneida Lake. Come prepared for possible wind and wet trail.

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