Regarding COVID-19: Please recreate responsibly and practice social distancing. Closures and travel restrictions are changing rapidly, always check and respect local regulations.

Independence, California

Backpack Rae Lakes via Glen and Kearsarge Passes

41.4 Miles Total - 6943 ft gain -

Originally added by Joe Law

This is a fairly challenging hike, depending on your pace and level of fitness, but it offers some incredible views, which the pictures don't really do justice.

The hike starts at Onion Valley campground and includes a good deal of elevation (two passes around 12,000 feet). You start climbing at the outset, and keep climbing for the first couple of hours before hitting Kearsarge Pass. Here you begin a long descent, then traverse above some beautiful lakes on the Sierra High Route before joining the PCT/John Muir Trail, which brings you to the second climb and Glen Pass. After this, it's another long and occasionally steep descent into the Rae Lakes area.

Campfires are not allowed above 10,000 feet, which means they are forbidden at Rae Lakes campground. Bear canister is a necessity.

Read More

Tags

Chillin
Camping
Photography
Swimming
Backpacking
Hiking
Lake
Scenic
Wildlife

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Challenging but beautiful

I took 2 days to get to Rae Lakes, and camped at Kearsarge Lake on the first night. I liked breaking it up because it's a quite challenging day to get all the way to Rae Lakes, since you have to hike up and down 2 mountain passes. Make sure to jump in the lake when you get there! So cold, but refreshing! There are tons of camp sites around the lake, but it can be quite a popular spot since it's on the John Muir Trail.

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

Stay Nearby

Independence, California

Grays Meadows

Whitney Portal Road

Lone Pine

Whitney Portal Road

Whitney Portal

Miramonte, California

Sentinel Campground

Nearby Adventures

Summit Mt. Gould

9 Miles Round Trip - 3812 ft gain

Backpack Over Kearsarge Pass to Charlotte Lake

16 Miles Round Trip - 2623 ft gain

Backpack to Flower Lake from Onion Valley

4.6 Miles Round Trip - 1350 ft gain

Tours