North Lake to the Lamarck Lakes is a 4.2 mile out and back trail located near Bishop, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from July until October.
My wife and I did this hike as our warm up for another back country trip. It's a nice hike and does have some elevation gain to it. But it's not a long hike so it doesn't wear on you. Both lakes are very scenic and we saw a few guys fishing the lower lake. You do have to park at North Lakes parking area and then hoof it to the trailhead. No big deal. Nice easy jaunt if you're looking for something that won't have you dragging your feet by the time you get back to your car :)
Great trail, parking can be a bit of a problem, you can't park at the campground, and there is only room for 4 cars at the closest day use spot. However, the larger day use parking spot has a bathroom and plenty of parking, but have to walk half-mile to trail head.
The hike starts climbing fairly quickly, lots of water in the streams. I have read that some people have trouble picking up the trail again from Lower Lamarck to Upper Lamarck and it can be tricky. The key is to cross over the stream soon right by where the stream flows out of lower Lamarck. The first 200 meters or so the trail is not great, but then the rest of the way up to Upper Lamarck is very well maintained. If you are indoubt you are on the right tail, then you aren't on it.
Great abundant colorful wildflowers on the way up to upper Lamarck. Better swimming and many entry points in Lower Lamarck and that is where you can scramble over to the Wonder Lakes if you want.
We found this trail definitely moderate, lots of elevation gain in 2 miles (1600ft)
This place has it all; wooded areas, frigid streams, rugged scree, and a beautiful lake view. Took a group up here and they had a blast!
NORTH LAKE TO LOCH LEVEN LAKE AND PIUTE LAKE
I'm uncertain why AllTrails does not have Loch Leven and Piute Lake trails up Piute Pass of the North Lake area of the Eastern Sierras, near Bishop.
Anyway, I hiked the well-marked trail today to Loch Leven Lake at 3.1 mile, OW. I had read that the RT was only 5.6 miles but I had a GPS tracker and it registered 6.2 miles when I returned to the car. Loch Leven Lake is in the John Muir Wilderness and branches off the North Lake trail that leads to Lamarck Lakes. The only difference is you stay to the right when the trail splits.
LLL is set right alongside the trail in a rocky glacial bowl. A steep talus slope with a little remaining snow frames the long, narrow lake.
Trailhead at 9,250'; Loch Leven Lake at 10,750'.
This was a backpack trip. The trip starts above 9,000 foot North Lake & climbs rapidly & steadily to 11,000 foot Upper Lamarck Lake. The trail from the lower lake offers a good challenge to your route finding skills.
Please allow time to visit the euphoric Wonder Lakes. This is a cross country side trip found by wending around the buttes & ridgelines northeast of Upper Lamarck Lake. We marveled at the beauty & unspoiled lakes, falls & cataracts. We were visited by an eagle, who glided in at treetop level to see what we were about, then winged his way off down below again.
Another side trip possible out of Upper Lamarck Lakes is the Lamarck Col. This is a very rigorous hike, but affords unparalled views from the Sierra Crest into King's Canyon's Evolution Basin. Mount Mendel and Mount Darwin dominate the horizon.
We did not fish, but spied a very good sized trout in the middle of the day at Upper Lamarck.