Crystal Lake - Camp and Hike near Mammoth Lakes, California
Inyo National Forest, Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546, USA,Mammoth Lakes,California
37.60350525800776, -119.01121258735657
3.8 miles SW of Mammoth Lakes, California
Address: Inyo National Forest, Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546, USA
GPS: 37°36'12.6"N 119°0'40.4"W
Maps | Directions
State: California

Lakes Rivers Trails

Camp and Hike

Unlike many hikes in the Sierra's, Crystal lake can be done as a day hike and as the perfect way to get away for a bit. As hikers make their way to the lake, they will see the monolith Crystal Crag, lakes such as Lake George, Lake Marie, and Lake Mamie. The trail is about 3.2 miles round trip with some elevation gain and switchbacks. While it may be appealing to just go straight up and avoid the many switchbacks, the trail can get pretty steep and so this is not the safest option. Overall the trail is very well kept, with a lot of shade along the way to help keep the summer sun off hikers backs. Dogs are allowed on the trail, but observe any additional rules that the area might have concerning pets. Along the way, be sure to stop and lookout and see the many beautiful lakes and forests. Hikers will go until they reach the crest of the trail and will then descend down to the lake. Once at the lake hikers can go either to the west end or the east end. The west end tends to have more of a rocky shoreline, though still pleasant. On the east side, the shoreline is a bit more flat and give more of an area to enjoy a picnic or soak in the sun. 

There is a parking lot at the trailhead for Lake George, and if that fills up, visitors can park on the side of the road without paying a fee, however they need to be completely off the road or will be fined. In addition to hiking at Crystal Lake, visitors can take a quick dip in the lake, go fishing, or enjoy a nice picnic on the shore of the lake. 

2.7K Written by cteicheira

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Be courteous, informed, and prepared. Read trailhead guidelines, stay on the trail, and don’t feed the wildlife.

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  1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
  2. Travel & camp on durable surfaces
  3. Dispose of waste properly
  4. Leave what you find
  5. Minimize campfire impacts
  6. Respect wildlife
  7. Be considerate of other visitors

Directions

From Mammoth Lakes, California

  1. Head west (276 ft)
  2. Turn left toward Main St (240 ft)
  3. Turn right onto Main St (0.5 mi)
  4. Continue straight onto Lake Mary Rd (394 ft)
  5. Continue straight to stay on Lake Mary Rd (2.2 mi)
  6. Continue onto Lake Mary Rd
    Parts of this road may be closed at certain times or days
    (1.1 mi)
  7. Continue onto Lake Mary Rd (0.5 mi)
  8. Turn left onto Around Lake Mary Rd (0.3 mi)
  9. Turn right onto Lake George Rd
    Destination will be on the right
    (0.3 mi)
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Crystal Crag courtesy of Don Graham Crystal Crag courtesy of Don Graham↗
Hiking up Crystal Lake (Crag) Trail in Mammoth Lak by 395 Guide Crystal Lake at Mammoth CA by Bryan H
2.7K

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