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What a View LbNA #75732

Owner:Baby Bear Contact Supporter
Plant date:Aug 21, 2021
City:Mammoth Lakes
Location: Ediza Lake
Found by: Not yet found!
Last found:N/A
Last edited:Aug 31, 2021
Difficulty: Difficult
Distance to Letterbox: 13.4 miles round trip

Beautiful hike and lakes. Ediza is stunning. **** If you get to entry booth before 7am you can drive in and park, otherwise you need to take the shuttle bus to trailhead.

Drive 3.7 miles through town on Highway 203 and turn right on Minaret Road. Follow Minaret Road for 4.2 miles to the Mammoth Mountain Adventure Center (Main Lodge) at the Mammoth Ski Resort. During the summer park in the day use or overnight parking lot and board the mandatory shuttle bus to the trailhead. Get off at Shuttle Stop #1, Agnew Meadows.

After hours or in the fall you can drive to the trailhead. If driving, continue on Minaret Road for 1.2 miles to the pay station. Pay the appropriate fee and then drive down Postpile Road for 2.7 miles. Turn right on the Agnew Meadows Road (located at the hairpin curve). Follow the dirt road for 0.4 miles to the second trailhead parking lot (on your left) and park. The trailhead is at the southwest end of the parking lot.

To the Letterbox:
Hikers taking the Devil’s Postpile Shuttle Bus to the trailhead (see driving directions below) should get off the bus at stop #1, Agnew Meadows. Walk up the dirt road to the second trailhead parking area. The trail starts at the southwest end of the parking lot.

Follow the trail as it skirts along the south side of a meadow and enters the trees, descending on a gentle grade. Pass a spur trail to the campground, the boundary marker for the Ansel Adams Wilderness and reach a signed trail junction at 1.7 miles. Continue straight ahead in the direction of Shadow Lake. The trail to the left heads toward Red’s Meadow and the Devil’s Postpile.

Beyond the junction the trail descends on moderate grades across open slopes, losing 230-ft., to the junction with the River Trail (8,040-ft.) at 1.8 miles. Turn right on the River Trail toward Shadow Lake. (Heading left on the River Trail leads to Reds Meadows.) Follow the wide, dusty trail as it ascends the Middle Fork of the San Joaquin River valley on gentle grades through forest and small meadows.

At 2.3 miles pass to the left (east) of the forested shores of Olaine Lake. At 2.7 miles the trail splits. Turn left (west) on the Shadow Lake Trail. (The trail to the right leads to 1,000 Island Lake.) Shortly after the junction cross the Middle Fork on a good bridge, 2.9 miles from the trailhead.

The trail now climbs moderately steep switchbacks up an exposed rocky hillside clad in sage brush and junipers, paralleling Shadow Creek. Near the top of the climb the trail ascends a series of granite steps beside a scenic waterfall cascading down rocky clefts carved by the creek.

After gaining close to 700-ft. in just under a mile the grade abates as the trail passes through a narrow gap between the rock face and the creek and emerges at the northeast shore of Shadow Lake (8,737-ft.), 3.9 miles from the trailhead.

The trail traverses along the northern shore of Shadow Lake for half a mile. Just beyond the end of the lake the trail connects with and joins the John Muir Trail (JMT) heading northbound. The southbound JMT turns left (south) at this point and crosses the lake’s inlet stream on a bridge. Our trail, the northbound JMT, continues straight ahead.

For the next 0.6 miles the trail follows the JMT ascending on gentle to moderate grades along the north side of Shadow Creek, passing waterfalls and pretty cascades along the way. At 5.1 miles the trail splits. The JMT turns right (northwest) toward Garnet Lake. Our trail to Ediza Lake continues ascending the scenic Shadow Creek Valley, wandering through meadows and forest beside the cascading stream. Openings in the forest provide nice views of Volcanic Ridge, rising to the south.

Cross Shadow Creek on a log bridge at 6.4 miles. Past the bridge the trail climbs switchbacks and then traverses around the north end of a granite knoll to Ediza Lake (9265-ft), 6.7 miles from the trailhead.

BOX: Arrive at Ediza lake and continue on trail with lake to your right for 300 steps. You should be next to a 4 foot high boulder on the right edge of the trail (about 30 yards past tallest tree on the shoreline). Go off trail to right before the boulder, to back front edge near end. Box is under a rock pile.

Hike length: 8+ miles