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Onion Valley to Kearsarge Lakes, CA

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5 9 0
Guide 9 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List CA > Sierra Nevada
Rated
4.6
4.6 of 5 by 5
 
1
Statistics
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Difficulty 3 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance One Way 6.2 miles
Trailhead Elevation 9,226 feet
Elevation Gain 2,742 feet
Accumulated Gain 2,742 feet
Avg Time One Way 4.5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 15.34
Interest Perennial Creek
Backpack Yes
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
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feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Collective Slideshow
Inaugural Calculation next Tap
23  2018-06-25
Golden Trout Lake Trail
azbackpackr
571  2017-08-08
Onion Valley to Happy Isles
Mudhole
81  2016-07-01
Rae Lakes Loop Trail
Lucyan
57  2015-07-23
JMT - Onion Valley to Horseshoe Meadow
John9L
69  2015-07-23
Onion Valley to Horseshoe Meadow
chumley
24  2014-10-08
Kearsarge Lakes Trail to Charlotte Lake
Oregon_Hiker
54  2014-07-18
John Muir Trail - North Lake to Onion Valley
John9L
63  2014-07-18
John Muir Trail - North Lake to Onion Valley
BiFrost
Page 1,  2
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Jul, Aug, Jun, Sep → 8 AM
Seasons   Summer to Autumn
Sun  6:34am - 4:42pm
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Official Route
 
8 Linked
 
Water
Nearby Area Water
Kearsarge Lakes Trail to Charlotte Lake
0.0 mi away
8.2 mi
5,246 ft
Flower Lake
0.0 mi away
5.0 mi
1,500 ft
Kearsarge Pass to Mount Gould Trail
0.0 mi away
12.0 mi
3,900 ft
Kearsarge Lakes Trail
0.0 mi away
13.0 mi
3,546 ft
Upper Bubbs Creek
4.1 mi away
31.0 mi
6,500 ft
Glen Pass to Pinchot Pass - JMT
4.1 mi away
16.3 mi
3,904 ft
Charlotte Lake
4.6 mi away
15.0 mi
2,400 ft
Mount Williamson 14,389
4.7 mi away
30.5 mi
10,759 ft
Shepherd Pass Trail
Shepherd Pass Trail
4.7 mi away
14.9 mi
6,580 ft
Vidette Meadow
4.8 mi away
26.0 mi
4,800 ft
[ View More! ]
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Spectacular Views
by MikeB61

This trip can be the first leg of a longer trip into Kings Canyon National Park and the Rae Lakes area. Although there is a lot of climbing to get over Kearsarge pass, our group did fine with a night at Onion Valley Campground to get a bit acclimated. As you hike up, you will pass several waterfalls, alpine lakes and fantastic peaks. The trail is very high quality and very steady. About halfway up is Gilbert Lake / Flower lake which can make a good point for a mid morning break. Beyond this point the vegetation becomes thinner and thinner. You eventually reach Kearsarge pass about 4 miles from the trailhead. The views from this point are fantastic as well. You'll see the Kearsarge Pinnacles as well as your destination, the Kearsarge Lakes. This is the entrance to Kings Canyon National Park. If day hiking, this can be a good turnaround point.


As you descend through steep rocky terrain, you will come to a signed junction, take the path to the left to head down towards Kearsarge Lakes and Bullfrog Lake (no camping). The upper path is a more direct path towards Charlotte lake or Rae Lakes. Taking the path towards Kearsarge Lakes you will come to an unsigned junction, take the left path again to go to Kearsarge Lakes. There are numerous nice campsites in the area, although you will probably have neighbors. The scenery is fantastic from here.

Bear canisters are required in Kings Canyon although we never saw any signs of activity int he 3 nights we spent in the area. This also is a good base to build to a longer trip in the area. We did a trip to Charlotte lake, then returned to Matlock Lake and back to Onion Valley.

MikeB61

    One-Way Notice
    This hike is listed as One-Way.

    When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$
    NPS


    Directions
    Map Drive
    or
    Road
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    From Phoenix: I-10 West to San Bernardino, North on 395 to Lone Pine. Pick up permits in Lone Pine, North on 395 to Independence, left on Market Street (Onion Valley Road) 13 miles to Onion Valley Campground
    page created by MikeB61 on Oct 01 2011 1:43 pm
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