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Mammoth Lakes Day Hikes

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Mammoth Lakes Day Hikes

Postby RenoFrank » Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:09 am

My hiking group will be renting a vacation home in Mammoth Lakes for 5 nights starting August 11, 2015. We range in age from 37 to 65 and our experiences include Mount Whitney day hike, Half Dome, Angels Landing, and The Narrows. I hope to learn of some day hikes in the Mammoth lakes area. We like to hike to a lake and/or peak. Probably 10 to 12 miles (or shorter)total. Out and back or one-way shuttle. I'm guessing we could drive an hour or so to reach our hikes so that might include Yosemite. We will look for some close shorter hikes for some of the days.



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Re: Mammoth Lakes Day Hikes

Postby John Harper » Sat Jan 24, 2015 10:26 am

Duck Pass Trail, Shadow Lake, Crystal Lake trail, Little Lakes Valley (just south at Tom's Place) are just a few. I'm sure others have some to add.

Also, Gaylor Lakes in the Yosemite entrance area is a great day hike. Lakes, mines, peaks, all of it.

John
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Re: Mammoth Lakes Day Hikes

Postby austex » Sat Jan 24, 2015 10:54 am

John Harper wrote:Duck Pass Trail, Shadow Lake, Crystal Lake trail, Little Lakes Valley (just south at Tom's Place) are just a few. I'm sure others have some to add.

Also, Gaylor Lakes in the Yosemite entrance area is a great day hike. Lakes, mines, peaks, all of it.

John


Tom's Place Excellent breakfast. Gaylor Lakes can be accessed w/o going in main gate and paying entrance fee. Also Gardisky Lake out of Saddlebag as well as Saddlebag Loop/Lakes with or w/o water taxi ride.
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Re: Mammoth Lakes Day Hikes

Postby awhite4777 » Sat Jan 24, 2015 11:44 am

1. I second the Duck Pass trail. Pretty straightforward climb to Duck Pass, and the scenery at Duck Lake and Pika Lake is outstanding. See here

2. Mt. Dana. Mt. Dana is an easy dayhike from near the Tioga Pass gate. If I recall, it's not a sanctioned NPS trail, but there is a trail, and it was marked with orange flags last time I climbed it (which was a couple of years ago). I recommend doing this towards the end of your visit--being acclimated to the elevation will expedite the climb. Mt. Dana is a short hike (5 miles round-trip), so after you get down, if you want to hike a little more, consider a scramble up nearby Lembert Dome.

3. Agnew Meadows to Ediza Lake. About 7.2 miles one-way, so 14.4 miles roundtrip. You can stop at Shadow Lake to keep the hike shorter, but I recommend pushing on towards Ediza. Spectaculary scenery, just beneath the minarets. If anyone in your group still has gusto at Ediza, they can continue (to Iceberg, then Cecile...). See here. That shows the route all the way to Cecile.

4. Thousand Island Lake is nearby, but is perhaps a little longer than you want in a day--from the Rush Creek Trailhead, it's about 7.4 miles one-way (with about 3,300 feet of ascent, and 800 feet of descent). My 63 year old dad and I did it last year (and made a larger loop out of it, passing Waugh Lake and going over Island Pass). See here.

5. The South Lake Trailhead is a bit of a drive (1h:11m, according to Google), but you quickly access beautiful high Sierra lakes and scenery. It's about 6.1 miles to the top of Bishop Pass. Descend into Dusy Basin if you feel like walking a little further--that is well worth it. Or, you can make the return trip a little longer with a loop around Chocolate Peak. See here.

Since those are all out and backs, you could shorten any one of them. The only one not worth shortening is probably Thousand Island Lake. That hike is more about the destination than the journey.
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Re: Mammoth Lakes Day Hikes

Postby SSSdave » Sat Jan 24, 2015 6:16 pm

August 11 is peak of summer at high elevations areas so will suggest easy hikes from high trailheads above 10k feet.

Driving north on US395 from Mammoth Lakes then west on SR120, it is 40 miles to Saddlebag Lake.

http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=37.98737,-119.29238&z=15&t=T

One of the most scenic group day hikes in the High Sierra is the 20 Lakes Basin loop that is less than 6 miles with only modest vertical. Lots of small lakes and North Peak is spectacular. Recommend hiking in morning when light is best.

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One can ride across the reservoir on a ferry that will save 1.5 miles each way along an otherwise boring trail on awkward metamorphic scree. From the north end of Saddlebag Lake take the trail towards Lundy Pass then at Helen Lake go west to Steelhead Lake and return back south.

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Driving south on US395 then west up Rock Creek Road to Mosquito Flat at 28 miles. Best to be there early if on weekends as the parking lot will fill. An excellent hike with superb High Sierra scenery of spectacular peaks and small lakes.

http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=37.42897,-118.75834&z=15&t=T

From the parking lot take the main trail south up the valley that passes several lakes. Gem Lakes and Morgan Pass at the turn around point are a bit less than 5 miles along and vertical is again modest at about 1k out.

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