If you have any questions, memories, or pro tips about Big Pine Lakes, drop them in the comments below! Populations with the "observed" status have not been verified by a taxonomic expert or do not have established populations. I had a few backup trips in mind but it’s always nice when a plan works out. I’m glad we did, or we would have missed the perfect campsite! There’s one exception to the 6-month rule, though. 4. From the trailhead at Glacier Lodge, the trail follows the south fork of Big Pine Creek through a glacially carved valley. Lake Services is accepting and processing lake use permit applications with a very limited amount of office hours and staff. https://www.bonjourbecky.com/backpacking-big-pine-lakes-permits Check out our favorite hiking and backpacking gear for dogs here! If the bugs are bad, you’ll be super thankful you brought it! This Permit in NOT TRANSFERRABLE and may only be used by the aforesaid mentioned Registered Eligible Holder in conjuncion with ALL … I’d recommend being in line early (at least 7:30am) since this summer is even busier than usual, though. Of those 25, there are 15 that can be reserved in advance and 10 available as walk-ups. This is a popular trailhead in the summer and on weekends. I mentioned earlier that there are public campgrounds at the base of Big Pine Lakes. I tried to reserve a permit but it only says W, which I know is walk up only so do you think I’d have a good chance of getting a permit if I get there early? (Want more info on specific items/general tips on packing for a backpacking trip? I tried to do some research but I read that it gets to be about low 40s, is that correct? The next day we woke up slowly, savoring coffee and backpacking breakfast burritos as the first rays of golden light slipped over Temple Crag. :P). HIKE TO: Big Pine Lakes to Third Lake & then some TRAIL: Big Pine Creek North Fork MILES: 14.54 miles out and back TIME: 3:41 hrs up, 3:29 DATE I WENT: 6/7/16 - 6/8/16 DIFFICULTY: moderate ELEVATION GAIN/ LOSS: 2471 ft HIKE PERMIT: yes for overnight, no for day hike PARKING PERMIT: no LOCATION: Eastern Sierra, Inyo National Forest. It’s just far enough off the trail to be private and boasts a small “kitchen”/reading area in addition to room for 1-2 tents. It’s 11 miles roundtrip to Second Lake (the most scenic/Instagram-famous one) or 14 miles roundtrip to all seven lakes. Thankfully the next night we moved camp up the cliff, where sweet anti-skeeter breezes let us read our Kindles for hours with the front door wide open. and If I get the permit is their a maximum number of nights I can stay out there? Hello looks like an incredible place. Keep in mind that the first half of the trail is totally exposed and hot, so start early if you’re bringing your furry friend. Keep your eyes open and you'll spot mining artifacts. Trail Details Mileage: 5.5 miles Round Trip Elevation Gain/Loss: 1750 feet Day(s) Hiked: 7/8/13 Trailhead Location Dog Friendly: Yes Trail Guide. Big Pine is located in Otter Tail County, Minnesota. Changes to your property may be covered by one or both ordinances. Palisade glacier sits above a series of lakes, named First Lake through Seventh Lake, where you'll find some of the best trout fishing in the Sierra Nevada. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from March until September. It’s the swimming and the singing and the dancing that happens in the street, on the sand, in the grass. We drove from Fresno through Yosemite and arrived at the White Mountain Ranger Station in Bishop CA for our “walk in” wilderness permit. Alice, before entering the John Muir Trail Wilderness of Inyo National Forest. Then it was on to Bishop for breakfast skillets and chocolate malts, the brilliant blues of Second Lake still blazing in our brains. Sometimes reality bites. Big Pine Lakes, a sanctuary that goes unnoticed by Southern Californians journeying north to Mammoth/Yosemite/Lake Tahoe, is one of my top 5 favorite trails. However, if you want to camp overnight at Big Pine Lakes, you will need to obtain a permit from Recreation.gov. For more information on trailheads and quotas, here is a … My standard overnight backpacking gear list is here on LighterPack, including weights and shopping links for most items. She's probably outside with her dog, Juno. The road towards the lakes (W Crocker Street) is indicated from US 395 by an inconspicuous sign to the Big Pine Lakes Recreation Area, and starts by crossing a barren, bouldery hillside then climbing steadily alongside the creek, up a shallow valley that eventually becomes lined with the big pine trees after which the stream was named. Where to Stay: Big Pine Lake Creek Campground near the trailhead for $24/night or apply for a permit to camp on the trail. Click “Enter” to tab through the search results. Big Pine Lake is a 642 acre lake located in Iron, Price Counties. The road towards the lakes (W Crocker Street) is indicated from US 395 by an inconspicuous sign to the Big Pine Lakes Recreation Area, and starts by crossing a barren, bouldery hillside then climbing steadily alongside the creek, up a shallow valley that eventually becomes lined with the big pine trees after which the stream was named. Next forecast at approx. We are not available to answer calls to the 800.443.5193 phone line. The trail is located 11 miles outside of Big Pine to the west. This lake is 4,726 acres in size. If you can’t snag a permit in advance —or just don’t want to plan that far ahead— there are still 10 permits per day reserved for walkups. You can hike on to Sixth and Seventh Lakes and Palisade Glacier from there, but we opted to take it “easy” and loop back to camp instead, passing pretty Black Lake along the way. Temple Crag – Big Pine Lakes CA. ❤️ Can you believe this was our plan B?!? Park in the hiker's parking area adjacent to the pack station. We then packed cold lunches and set out on a day hike to the farther lakes, leaving our tent and heavy bear cans behind. The brilliant teal color of the lake is caused by glacial melt that only deepens in hue as the year goes on, meaning August and September are better than June or July even if the trail is clear. Great article Becky! September and early October are also great times to hike, though you risk colder temperatures and early-season snow. If you are planning on doing a day hike to Big Pine Lakes, you do not need a permit. 2 Permit holders are permitted to use the following Aqua Ohio Lakes (Pine Lake, Evans Lake, Hamilton Lake, McKelvey Lake) thru xxx Date . That also meant we got to enjoy not one but two glorious sunrises over Temple Crag and a leisurely lunch at Fifth Lake on the second day, which ended up being our favorite part of the trip. I, meanwhile, had “Awoooo” in my head the whole trip! It has a maximum depth of 22 feet. Those 10 first-come, first-served permits are released at 11am the day before your hike at any of the Inyo National Forest permit issuing stations: Eastern Sierra Visitor Centerlocated at the Junction of Highway 395 and State Route 136, south of Lone Pine, CA 93545, White Mountain Ranger Station798 N. Main StreetBishop, CA 93514, Mammoth Lakes Welcome Center2500 Main StreetMammoth Lakes, CA 93546, Mono Basin Scenic Area Visitor CenterNorth of Lee Vining on Hwy 395Lee Vining, CA 93541. 1-Day 3-Day 5-Day. Press J to jump to the feed. The Big Pine Creek North Fork Hiking Trail rises into California's High Sierra toward the southernmost glaciers in the United States. Created in 1961, BRWDA was conceived and promoted by the people of Henderson and Decatur Counties and constructed by TVA. Palisade glacier sits above a series of lakes, named First Lake through Seventh Lake, where you'll find some of the best trout fishing in the Sierra Nevada. Active. December Temperature Bishop, Bishop Airport (18 miles) 2020 November December. I was immediately excited as I had never seen this area before, so we grabbed a permit and set out to backpack the area in late September 2016. Then came the uninvited guests. So if you want permits for June 20-22, you can book the whole trip starting June 20, even though June 22 is more than 6 months away. But if you can, I highly recommend backpacking. I took nightly “baby wipe baths” so I wasn’t that stinky and waited until I got home for a real shower. Hi, thanks for reading! Does that mean there won’t be any wilderness Permit? Hopefully this will unite local hikers and allow us to meet and explore the beautiful landscape we inhabit. So, do you just try to find a campsite or hotel for the night? how early didypu guys get to the visitor center to get the permit? Follow the west shore of Fourth Lake to the open meadow like terrain around these lakes which afford great views of high mountain peaks, as well as the more distant Temple Crag. If you are planning to spend the night in the wilderness, be sure to pick up a wilderness permit from the Inyo National Forest. It is also the most popular approach for climbers seeking to climb Middle Palisade. The steep, 4.8-mile hike from road's end takes you up the North Fork of Big Pine Creek, past waterfalls, wildflowers, and an historic stone cabin to First Lake … Fish include Musky, Panfish, Smallmouth Bass, Northern Pike and Walleye. The dock leading out to the platform must be 5 feet or less in width and the dock must be on a lake with a shoreland classification of General Development or Recreational Development. How cold can it get in September up there? If you are looking to do a backpacking trip in Big Pine Lakes, you can get your permit here. Location: John Muir Wilderness, Inyo County, 10 miles west of Big Pine, 15 miles south of Bishop. The visitor center was crowded as expected, and after a half hour wait I scored the last available spot for a walk in permit up the North Fork of Big Pine, which was my first choice. Beech Lake has a new playground, pavilion. Only JM23 is for trips to Second Lake and beyond.). It is approximately 76 feet deep at its deepest point. Beech River Watershed Development Area. Big Pine Lakes makes a perfect weekend journey, or to allow time to explore all the lakes and venture up some of the side-canyons, plan on 4 or 5 days. 0 comments . Melanie and I camped two nights at Second Lake, giving us plenty of time to revel in the scenery, read in the sun by the lake, and day hike to the other five lakes sans packs. Hi, great adventure by the way. What permits/campgrounds would you guys recommend making reservations for? Big Pine Lake is a 642 acre lake located in Iron, Price Counties. Backpacking Big Pine Lakes: Permit Information. While there are no bad sites at Second Lake, this is by far the best one — and the most highly coveted, as judged by the number of backpackers who trickled in after us and were disappointed to find it occupied. To get here: From the US Highway 395 in the center of Big Pine, CA, turn west at Crocker Street and proceed out of town, as the road becomes Glacier Lodge Road. For this hike, we only visited the first three, as snow and ice were blocking the trail for lakes 4-7. Me and my buddies are looking to get a permit for big pine lake through north fork. There are vault toilets, bear boxes, and trash cans at the trailhead. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until September. Pack out all of your dirty toilet paper and baby wipes (never bury it, since it will take many many years to decompose) in a Ziplock. Unfortunately, the mosquitoes came, too, and we shut ourselves in the tent before sunset just to avoid them. Big Pine Lakes weather forecast issued today at 9:59 am. Permits open on a rolling basis at 7am Pacific time exactly 6 months in advance. There are number of residential neighborhoods, including historic Browns Mills and New Lisbon, Birmingham, Country Lakes, and Presidential Lakes. The Trailhead Big Pine is a small town of few facilities. The visitor center was crowded as expected, and after a half hour wait I scored the last available spot for a walk in permit up the North Fork of Big Pine, which was my first choice. The Big Pine Lakes trailhead is 20 minutes from the small town of Big Pine, California, ~6 hours from the San Francisco Bay Area and ~5 hours from Los Angeles. I am a very novice camper…what do you do about showering and restrooms? Camping within 100 feet of lakes, streams or trails (terrain permitting), and never less than 50 feet of lakes or streams or within 25 feet of trails. Thanks for your support! We napped on the warm granite, ate tuna wraps with Triscuits, and repeated variants of “THIS IS [PERFECT/AMAZING/BEAUTIFUL/INSERT SUPERLATIVE ADJECTIVE HERE]” to each other as we gazed into the deepest blue sky I’ve ever seen. In general, "verified" populations are established and have been verified by a taxonomic expert. If you are planning to spend the night in the wilderness, be sure to pick up a wilderness permit from the Inyo National Forest. Starting at high elevation, you have many good choices of Big Pine Canyon Trails including South Fork Trail, Baker Creek Trail, North Fork Trail to Palisade Glacier. It has a maximum depth of 22 feet. Me and my friends plan to do 2 nights as well, given that you did a walk in- it means its possible to get 2 nights permit via walk-in? If you book a trip for two or more nights, you can book the entire trip 6 months from the first night. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. The aspens along the trail turn gold in late October-early November, so if you’re prepared for colder evening temperatures that might be the best time of all to visit. There are 7 Big Pine Lakes, numbered sequentially. However, if you want to camp overnight at Big Pine Lakes, you will need to obtain a permit from Recreation.gov . Big Pine Lakes Camping. I am planning my first backpacking trip for my 23rd birthday. Starting at the Big Pine Creek Campground, this trail passes by Mt. Select the number of permits you want, then your entry trailhead: JM23 – Big Pine Creek North Fork. Usually you can try to get walk up permits, but this year those permits reserved for walk ups will become available online 14 days out from the start date. I highly recommend backpacking if you can, though! After the lakes, the trail switchbacks up Table Mountain. Loved your photos and story. Pine Lake is the water and the trees and the small houses that don’t interfere too much with the natural environment. When fishing, anglers can expect to catch a variety of fish including Black Bullhead, Bluegill, Brown Bullhead, Green Sunfish, Largemouth Bass, Northern Pike, Rock Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye, Yellow Bullhead, Yellow Perch, Pumpkinseed,. I’ve been wanting to hike here for years but have avoided it because … The Trailhead Big Pine is a small town of few facilities. Reserve your permit online in advance through the Recreation website. When researching spots to explore, my friend Chris from Last Adventurer told me about the North Fork of Big Pine and it’s blue glacial lakes (not unlike those in Banff). share. Big Pine Lake: ID# 58013800 in Pine County | Pine Lake: ID# 01000100 in Aitkin County. Big Pine Lakes was actually our Plan B(eautiful), as our original route to Dusy Basin was still buried in snow in mid-July. in case you drop your phone/the phone dies/it gets wet etc. Aitkin, MN 56431. Since this is a backpacking trip without an established campground, nature is your shower and your restroom! If you do swim, you should wipe off any sunscreen or bugspray with a wipe first to avoid contaminating the pools. (More info here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/inyo/recarea/?recid=20328) It’s just too popular of a place and in most years (like this one, if the lack of rain continues) is at high risk for forest fires. Then looped back via Black Lake, the prettiest section of all. The Agency … Melanie snagged our July 2019 permits via walkup from the White Mountain Ranger Station in Bishop. It’s the beach and the park and the wetlands that expand our living space and become our real living rooms. Park in the hiker's parking area adjacent to the pack station. 24157 445th Place. May I ask what map you recommend for this hike? Usually you can try to get walk up permits, but this year those permits reserved for walk ups will become available online 14 days out from the start date. The other 10 are set aside as walk-up permits, available after 11 AM the day before your departure. Snow lingers on the trail to Big Pine Lakes well into June, making July and August the most popular times to hike. The trailhead to Big Pine Lakes is 9 miles east of Big Pine on Highway 395, 15 miles south of Bishop. Have so much fun! I recommend plenty o’ bug spray, lotsa sunscreen, and a lightweight mosquito head net like this. 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