East Lake Trail

EASY 2 reviews
#76 of 106 trails in

East Lake Trail is a 6.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Lee Vining, California that features a lake. The trail is good for all skill levels offers a number of activity options. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

6.8 miles
1,683 feet
Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly



nature trips

trail running





wild flowers


Wednesday, February 02, 2011

This used to be our signature trip at Leave No Trace Adventures using East Lake as our first night of 5. This is from memory from a few years ago so please correct me where needed. Trail begins at Twin Lakes, first day is about 4 miles 1.2k or so elevation gain pretty easy but decent push with a six day load. Again less miles hiked on first day, a common theme in most our trips as we leave time for rest and enjoyment. Day two is a shade under 4 miles hiking past Hoover Lakes and camping at far end of Summit Lake at 10k+ elevation, no fires. Opportunities to bag an easy peak and relax. Day three finds us hiking down into and through Virgina Canyon towards back door of Yosemite. Meandering along the water and through fields of avalanched timber to camp at 7 miles beyond the river crossing at the horse camp if available. You can also choose the extra 2 miles uphill :-) to the lower McCabe lakes if exiting via 20 Lakes Basin as we do. The last one or two days leaves you with an off trail trek of less than 2 miles as you follow the creek up to upper McCabe Lake. You can camp for the night or continue off trail up to Shepherds Crest and out via the cairn trail to 20 Lakes Basin and the boat ride back across the lake to shuttle back to the cars! Most clients always remark at how different each day seems geologically and visually. Plus the off trail finish via Shepherds Crest for most novice hikers is a thrill and an accomplishment by this stage of the trip. I'd say for the properly prepared and conditioned it's mostly a moderate hike at this pace with a bit of demanding for fun. Hope this helps and remember, leave no trace.

Saturday, June 01, 2013