JT's Favorite Sierra Trail (Joel's Journeys #1)

Submitted by Bubbling Sprin… on Tue, 07/26/2016 - 15:42
Picture of Big Pine Lake

47 miles north of Lone Pine lies the small town of Big Pine.  The largest glacier in the Sierra Nevada (North Palisade Glacier) lies in this area. 

From Highway 395, turn left (west) and drive 11 miles up Glacier Lodge Road (an ascent of 3800 feet).  Hike four miles, ascending 2200 feet, to the north fork of Big Pine Creek Trail to arrive at the Big Pine turquoise lakes and Temple Crag.  The hike is well worth it—you would have to drive almost to Canada to see anything like this! 

Hikers in top shape might consider hiking another five miles (ascending 2,500 feet) to the dramatic Glacier Viewpoint to see the mile-wide glacier and the cliffs beyond, which rise to Mount Sill at 14,162 feet and Mount North Palisade at 14,242 feet—awesome! 

Even non-hikers can see 14,019 foot Middle Palisade and its smaller glacier right from the road end and visit the First Falls drop of the north fork of Big Pine Creek.