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Agnew Meadows to 1000 Island Lake via PCT, CA

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Guide 2 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List CA > Sierra Nevada
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Difficulty 4 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance One Way 8.7 miles
Trailhead Elevation 8,331 feet
Elevation Gain 1,500 feet
Accumulated Gain 2,435 feet
Avg Time One Way 5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 16.81
Interest Perennial Creek
Backpack Yes
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
45  2017-09-01 Lucyan
31  2015-07-27 slegal
Author slegal
author avatar Guides 74
Routes 101
Photos 2,960
Trips 55 map ( 344 miles )
Age 56 Male Gender
Location Thousand Oaks, CA
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Preferred   Jul, Aug, Sep, Jun → Early
Seasons   Summer
Sun  5:08am - 6:41pm
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The second hardest route
by slegal

From The Mammoth Lakes area, there are three ways to get to Thousand Island Lakes. One is via the John Muir Trail. Another is via the River Trail. This hike description is the route via the High Trail, also known as the Pacific Crest Trail.


The High Trail officially starts at Agnew Meadows. From the trailhead, the trail heads up a series of switchbacks for about 400 vertical feet and continues to climb in a northwesterly direction once the switchbacks end until the trail tops out at about 9,700 feet. There are many small stream crossings during the first half of the hike and abundant wildflowers. There was lots of wild onion at all of the stream crossings when I hiked the trail. This stuff is quite tasty.

At this point the trail descends back down to about 9,540’ before continuing its climb toward the Badger Lakes. Shortly before reaching the Badger Lakes, the trail starts heading in a more westerly direction. Arriving at the first Badger Lake is a welcome sight because you are now only about a mile and a half from Thousand Island Lake.

From Badger Lakes the trail climbs steeply toward the high point of the trail to about 9,850. Along the way, the middle fork of the San Joaquin River is adjacent to the trail. Soon, the trail reaches a number of small linked ponds that are part of the outflow of Thousand Island Lake. This is where the Middle Fork of the San Joaquin River is still just a small stream. Here, Banner Peak is constantly in view due west.

At the high point of the trail you are greeted with your first view of Thousand Island Lake. The trail is fairly flat from this point all of the way to Thousand Island Lake. After approximately, 8.7 miles, the High Trail and The John Muir Trail intersect adjacent to Thousand Island Lake. This is quite a gathering place for hikers, but camping is not allowed near the outlet of the lake. Numerous campsite exist on both sides of the lake beyond about a quarter mile from the outlet.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2015-08-22 slegal

    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 $$

    Directions
    Map Drive
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    Road
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    From Mammoth Lakes take Minaret Road (Highway 203) west to Mammoth Mountain's main lodge area. Park your car there and purchase a ticket to ride the Devils Postpile bus. Get off of the bus at the Agnew Meadows stop, which is the first stop.

    If you are an early bird, you can drive in if you reach the ranger station at the top of Minaret Summit before 7:00 AM. If you do drive in you can park next to the Agnew Meadows trailhead, thus shaving almost a mile round trip off of your hike from where the bus lets you off. Just be aware that the drive down from Minaret Summit is a one lane road and I personally wouldn’t want to meet a bus going the opposite direction on this road.
    page created by slegal on Aug 22 2015 7:36 pm
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