Golden Trout Lake Loop

MODERATE 3 reviews

Golden Trout Lake Loop is a 5.4 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Independence, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from July until July.

DISTANCE
5.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2395 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

backpacking

camping

fishing

fly fishing

hiking

lake

river

waterfall

wild flowers

over grown

9 days ago

Tough but worth it! This trail required some route finding as the main path is hard to find sometimes. I hiked up to the first a second lakes north of Golden Trout and then came back as I was running out of daylight. The trail is very steep and loose in places. Wear good shoes or boots and take your time.

hiking
2 months ago

I hiked this route back in May as a way of testing my hiking abilities in the snow. The route was actually easier because of the conditions and I ascended the snow field, which cut out a lot of switchbacks (my guide notes that the first leg is "strenuous"). I made it up to the first lake with just crampons and a lot of determination, though poles or an axe would've made it easier. After a solitary lunch and a scan of the route up to the next group of lakes, I opted to head back down and save it for another trip. I'll post again after doing it in dry conditions. The best part about the route is the staggering views of the surrounding peaks, as well as a "gun sight" view of the Owens Valley on the way down. I saw no other hikers on the route. Certainly one of the best short hikes in the Eastern Sierra.

hiking
Saturday, August 20, 2016

Used this as a warm-up for Whitney while camping two nights in Onion Valley. Steep-ish trail and a bit of a bushwack until you get to the talus pile. We actually followed a false-trail too far up the talus/scree slope. The trail crosses the stream near the top of the obvious waterfall.

The lake north of Golden Trout lake actually had more fish, my buddy's only catch of the day was on his second cast. The loop portion of this route requires an off-trail class 2/3 scramble down granite with some decent exposure. We were glad the rain started after we got off this section.

Having no luck at Golden Trout Lake and with the rain picking up, we booked it back down to Onion Valley, and were able to out-pace the clouds. Decent little hike to get in some extra elevation and get the heart rate up if your acclimating in the area.