Tag Archives: granite

Lily Pad Campground

Lilypad Campground @ Lake Wishon Reservoir
Sierra National Forest, California

The long journey up the mountain into the Sierra National Forest is only for the true adventure seekers. First off, get a good forest map. Second, plan several days if not a full week off of work to explore this region in depth. It is a long drive from most anywhere in California, and this spot is way, way tucked back in there right up against the High Sierra peaks and wildness.

East of in Fresno, historic village of Clovis is a good lunch stop in route. Drive up mountain on Hwy. 168, turn right at Shaver Lake on to Dinkey Creek Rd. Now you will clock the mileage 28.7 miles to the camp. Drive past McKinley Grove and past Dinkey Creek. Follow signs to Wishon Reservoir. This campground is located adjacent to the road before you reach the dam.

All this travel time will have you asking ‘is it worth it’? The answer is ‘yes’….. if you want an uncrowded lake with plenty of wilderness surrounding you. Granite rock and forest all around. Lake Wishon is a hydroelectric reservoir operated by PG&E

Lily Pad Campground

Central Sierra Camping – Wishon Lake

High Sierra Rangers Office: 559-855-5355

• Elevation: 6,500′
• Number of Sites: 15
• Camping Reservations: No
• Sites Available: First come, First serve
• Vehicle Accessibility: 35′ limit on RVs & trailers
• Length of Stay: 14 Days
• Toilet: Vault
• Water: Piped
• Season: Closed in Winter Snow
• Fee: Yes

camp sites at lake

Large granite boulder coves provide cubby-hole privacy w/ shady trees and well spaced camp sites. Very unique design with paved driveways, adequate for handicapped camping with some sites with better access than others. 4 camp sites are considered walk-in sites.

Lake views from camps are only a mere climb up to the top of the nearest granite, which will show you just how close you are sleeping to the big water.

As with any Sierra location, holiday and summer weekends are the most busy. Tourists, family campers and RVers are all out enjoying the sunshine. Mid-week camping is good for fishing, relaxing w/ peace and quiet. Off season is best for having the place to yourself.

Outdoor recreation in the area include – hiking, camping, backpacking, rock climbing, mountaineering, sightseeing, kayaking, canoeing, mountain biking, off-roading, creek fishing, lake fishing.

 

Neighboring Wishon Village has a small general store, RV park w/ wifi & boat rentals.

 

Kaiser Wilderness

WhiteFir Camp

22,700 acres
Kaiser Pass Road
Sierra National Forest

Central Sierra Nevada Mountains/ Kaiser Pass & Kaiser Peak / Highway 168

One of the best cell phone coverage areas for any California Wilderness location, this central Sierra region is south of Yosemite National Park and known as primarily as Shaver Lake. California Hwy 168, along with Dinkey Creek Road (southward) and Kaiser Pass Road (northward) leads off in all splintered directions to secluded campsites, rivers, creeks, lakes, developed campgrounds and amazing forest scenery. Off road trails and hiking trails, everywhere back here! But it is best to have several good maps for cross reference.

This Sierra National Forest region includes all hydroelectric dams and lakes surrounding Shaver and Huntington Lake, including Florence Lake, Ward Lake, Edison Lake, Mammoth Pool, Courtright Reservoir and Wishon Reservoir.

Dusy Ershim Trail 4×4 travels past Kaiser Peak and the cell phone towers. Several primitive camp sites with views on ridge. Numerous developed NFS Campgrounds out this way on Kaiser Pass Road.

Trailheads for horseback, hiking, backpackers, mountaineers, rock climbers. Snowmobiles love this amazing route when the snow is deep; some west coast winters can be better than others.

Kaiser Wilderness is granite chuck of mountain peaks up behind Huntington Lake & China Peak ski resort,  off the paved one lane Kaiser Pass Road.

Sierra National Forest

Kaiser Pass Road, elevation 9184′

25 mph – pothole paved, barely maintained one lane road, 20+ miles. Kaiser Road closed in winter months.

recreation –
sierra National Forest map

  • backpacking
  • camping
  • creeks
  • fishing
  • hiking
  • lakes
  • mountaineering
  • rock climbing
  • rivers

Sierra Topo Maps

Sierra Map Tom Harrison
Sierra NF Map USDA
Kaiser Wilderness Map
Ansel Adams Wilderness USDA
Ansel Adams Trail Map
Dinkey Lakes Wilderness USDA
Dinkey Lakes Trail Map
John Muir Trail Maps
Mono Divide High Country
NatGeo Mono / Mammoth Map

surrounding wilderness and forest lands –

Ansel Adams Wilderness
Dinkey Lakes Wilderness
Inyo National Forest
John Muir Wilderness
Kings Canyon NP
Sierra National Forest
Yosemite National Park

National Forest & Wilderness Permits –

USDA Sierra NF

More Kaiser Wilderness Info & Links –

sierrawild.gov/wilderness/kaiser
summitpost.org/kaiser-peak
Kaiser Wilderness Wiki
San Joaquin River
Don’t Tell Anyone Campsites
Mono Hot Springs

kaiserpass
View from Kaiser Pass Trail – Huntington Lake in background

Dome Land Wilderness

Southern Sierra Nevada Mountain / Domeland / Dome Lands
Kern Plateau, Sequoia National Forest

Dome Land Wilderness

130,081 acres

55 miles of trails (hiking & horseback)

Located at the southern end of the Kern Plateau about 20 miles east of Kernville, granite domes give this area its name. Domeland Wilderness is a unique geologic area with semi-arid to arid mountainous regions. Elevations ranging from 3,000′ to 9,730′ – it is surrounded by National Forest, where the Sierra mountains meet the North Mojave Desert. The Wilderness is the southernmost habitat for the Golden Trout. The South Fork of the Kern and tributary streams attract many fishermen. Vegetation is mostly mixed conifer and piñon (pinyon pine).

The Domeland Wilderness is located at the southern end of the Kern Plateau. This land was first protected by the Wilderness Act of 1964 as a 62,695 acre wilderness and was later expanded to 130,081 acres in 1984 to include the delicate transition ecosystems that meet to the east, south, and north of the original wilderness. These new additions, now jointly managed by the Bureau of Land Management and Sequoia National Forest, are rugged and dry.

Though it is considered within the Sierra range, the Domeland Wilderness includes the overlap of several ecosystems to form unique plant and animal communities. The banks of the South Fork of the Kern River offer important riparian habitats of cottonwoods and meadows which stand in sharp contrast against the characteristic smooth domes and bold granite outcroppings. Domes that range from the size of a cottage to football fields across and spear-like jagged spires can be found in the Domeland. This range is one of the driest in the Sierra with the semi-arid mountains of the north and east crumbling into desert.

Notable Wildfires: Dome Fire 1996. Manter Fire in 2000.

Dome Land trailhead locations:

East side access near Rockhouse Meadow and at the Long Valley Campground (BLM). Access is via Nine Mile Canyon Road (J41) from US Highway 395 or Chimney Peak Road (graded dirt road) via State Highway 178 , the main route that passes Lake Isabella.

West side trailheads are at Big Meadow and Taylor Meadow. Two trails from Big Meadow can be reached from Kernville via Tulare County Road M99, Sherman Pass, and Cherry Hill Roads. Leading to Manter Meadow, the upper Big Meadow Trail is a rugged hike while the lower Big Meadow Trail follows more gentle terrain. The trail from Taylor Meadow (southeast of Big Meadow) also leads to Manter Meadow. North side access is available from the Blackrock/ Sherman Pass Road via the Dark Canyon and Woodpecker trails.

dome land mapManter Meadow is popular along with other camp sites located at Little Manter Meadow, Woodpecker Meadow, Rockhouse Meadow, and in the Bartolas Country at the south end of the Wilderness.

Dome Land Wilderness Map USDA

 

surrounding lands & forests –

Sequoia National Forest
Ridgecrest Desert BLM

nearby towns –

National Forest & Wilderness Permits –

USDA Sequoia NF

More Dome Land Wilderness Info & Links –

sierrawild.gov/wilderness/domeland
summitpost.org/domeland-wilderness
Dome Land Wiki

Golden Trout Wilderness

Golden Trout Wilderness Area

granite Upper Kern River is Mount Whitney snow melt
  • 303,511 acres
  • elevation range 1,000′ – ­13,000′
  • pine forest, chaparral
  • granite walls, domes
  • 379 miles of trail
  • summers are busy
  • snow in winter
  • best in early spring
  • wood fires may be restricted
  • portable stoves permitted
  • water plentiful
  • rock climbing & mountaineering
  • fishing
  • backpacking
  • primitive hot springs
  • waterfalls, swimming holes
  • wilderness permits required for overnight
Golden Trout Wilderness surrounds the mighty gorge of the Upper Kern Canyon, south of Mount Whitney.
Inside

TULARE COUNTY

bordering

Inyo National Forest

Sequoia National Forest

Eastern Sierra Interagency Center
760-876-6200

Golden Trout / South Sierra Wilderness Map USDA

Golden Trout Trail Map

Located in the South Sierra Nevada mountains alongside the Southern Sierra Wilderness. Inside the remote rugged peaks of a deep, granite crevasse known as the Upper Kern River with ancient Sequoia forest to the west and to the eats, some of the tallest peaks in the Sierra range. This wild land area is home to the California golden trout and is the main water flow southward from the tallest peak in the lower 48  – Mount Whitney on the Eastern Sierra front.

Sequoia National Forest
Monache Meadows
Inyo National Forest
Mountain Home State Forest
Sequoia National Park
Mineral King

Golden Trout Wilderness

Roads, campgrounds and trailheads surrounding Golden Trout Wilderness

Eastern Sierra –

Horseshoe Meadows Road (paved) leads up to high elevation meadows from the high deserts of Lone Pine, CA. Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) access; Mount Whitney and John Muir Wilderness are to the north. Equestrian corrals and horse trails. Camping is limited to a one night stay at any of the 3 campgrounds up here.

Golden Trout Trailhead Campground: elevation 10,000′ / 12 walk-in sites / closed winter
Horseshoe Meadows Campground: elevation 10,000′ / 18 walk-in sites / closed winter
Cottonwood Equestrian Camp: elevation 10,000′ / 10 horse corrals / closed winter

Forks of  the Kern –

Fork of the Kern / Loyds Meadow Road #22S82 – This main paved road connects the Kern River (Sierra Hwy Road #99) to the lower elevation, granite slopes of the Western Divide, and the route dead ends at Jerky Meadow parking lot. Camp 1-6 are primitive camp areas located on dirt side roads and 4×4 might be required on some of them. Obtain a campfire permit from rangers in Kernville. Fishing, camping, waterfalls and swimming holes are popular in this region. The big developed camp along this road, is located 10 miles up, in a pine filled valley on Peppermint Creek on the west side of the street and is within the Giant Sequoia National Monument.

Lower Peppermint Campground: elevation 5300′ / 17 camp sites / open year round

Lloyd Meadows @ Sequoia Forest Road# 20S67 – is the Forks of the Kern Trailhead & the dirt road that accesses it, is very popular among equestrian campers.

Western Divide Highway –

Road #20S79 leads from Western Divide Hwy to Lewis trailhead.
Road #20S50 leads from Western Divide Hwy to 2 hiking trailheads.

Sequoia National Park, Three Rivers, CA –topo maps

South Fork Road leads up Kaweah River at Southfork trailhead.
Mineral King Road is only open seasonally, access to high country lakes and trailheads.

 

SEQUOIA AREA MAPS –

Golden Trout Wilderness Maps
Sequoia National Forest Map USDA
Inyo National Forest Map USDA
Mineral King Map
Sequoia & Kings Canyon NP Map
NatGeo Sequoia Kings Map

Golden Trout Wilderness trailheads:

east side –
Cottonwood Trailhead (near Lone Pine)
Blackrock Trailhead (Monache Mdws)

south side –
Jerky Trailhead
Forks of the Kern Trailhead
Lewis Camp Trailhead (Western Divide)
Summit Trailhead (Western Divide)
Clicks Creek Trailhead (Western Divide)
Camp Wishon Trailhead (Western Divide)

west side –
South Fork Trailhead (Three Rivers)
Atwell Mill Trailhead (Silver City)
Franklin Pass Trailhead (Mineral King)

List of nearby towns:

Desolation Wilderness

Desolation Wilderness Area

63,690 acres, a federally protected wilderness area located along the crest of the Sierra Nevada mountain range – in between Lake Tahoe and the Gold Country, on the western slopes. This is back country Tahoe @ tree-line, where big, bare granite rock of the High Sierra meets the snow melt in 80 alpine lakes; several streams; hiking, fishing horseback riding, and backpacking. Elevation range approx. 6000′ – 9,985′

El Dorado National Forest

916-573-2600

The Tahoe Rim Trail and Pacific Crest Trail pass through the wilderness.

Desolation Wilderness Map
Desolation Wilderness Map
(National Forest Service USDA)

Desolation Wilderness Topo Map
Desolation Trail Map
(Tom Harrison Maps)

List of Desolation Wilderness trailheads:

  • Loon Lake Trailhead
  • Buck Island Trailhead
  • Van Vleck Trailhead
  • Rockbound Trailhead
  • Twin Lakes Trailhead
  • Lyons Trailhead
  • Twin Bridges Trailhead
  • Ralston Trailhead
  • Echo Trailhead
  • Echo Lakes Trailhead
  • Glen Alpine Trailhead
  • Mount Tallac Trailhead
  • Bayview Trailhead
  • Eagle Falls Trailhead
  • Meeks Bay Trailhead
  • Horsetail Falls Trailhead

List of nearby towns:


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Rock Climbing Southern California

Idyllwild Camp Granite

Rock Climbing in SoCal is limited to the awesome southern deserts with boulders, boulders & yep, more boulders. Joshua Tree is well known, but Mojave deserts boulders have much to offer, with less crowds. Meaning you’ll get more on exploring new routes, off the beaten path.

Bishop in the Eastern Sierra has the Buttermilks, but we wanna cover stuff further south for climbers. Numerous crags and peaks can be found in the mountain regions of San Diego. Many destinations are also great camp spots.

Good granite is hard to come by & big granite walls are non-existent down south. The most popular piece of Southern California granite among climbers is that of Tahquitz Peak in Idyllwild CA

Big Bear Lake

  • Bouldering @ various places
  • Idyllwild Rock Climbing

  • Tahquitz Peak in San Jacinto Wilderness: Tahquitz Peak Lookout stands at 8846′ elevation, towering above the pine village of touristy shops & cafes below. It’s a small slice of the Sierra Nevada (fabulous blue granite feeling) in SoCal & the rock climbers love it. Humber Park is at the base of the peak. The park is a family & tourist destination, especially during snow days. Paved parking lot is at the very top of the neighborhood, a well signed route. Follow the brown “Humber Park” signs. Hmmm, now is that ta-keets, ta-quits? Just ask a local – who grew up in Idyllwild.
  • Tahquitz Peak

    San Diego County climbing destinations:

    Army Rock
    Beirut
    Bonita
    Carlsbad Boulders
    Culp Valley
    Descanso Wall
    Dixon Lake
    El Cajon Mountain
    McCain Valley
    Mission Gorge
    Mt Everest
    Mt. Helix
    Mt. Woodson
    Otay Lakes
    Poway Crags
    Rock Mountain
    Santee Boulders
    Stonewall Peak
    Valley of the Moon

    For more on California rock climbing places, check out a few of our favorites resources:

    CA Rock Climbing Instruction

    Rock Climbing Ratings

    Rock Climbing Local Links

    California Rockclimbing.com

    Southern California rock climbing areas:

  • Idyllwild
  • Joshua Tree NP
  • Mojave NP
  • Southern California Maps that may be relevant: