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 –

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 Map USDA
Golden Trout Trail Map (Tom Harrison)
Sequoia National Forest Map USDA
Sequoia Forest Topo Atlas
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: