The hike to Minaret Lake isn’t a technical hike, however you must nonetheless pay particular consideration to the next potential security hazards, and you should definitely plan forward accordingly.
Whereas Minaret Lake is actually not the very best level within the Sierra Nevadas, the trailhead begins at round 7,500 ft elevation, and also you’ll find yourself all the best way up at 9,800 ft whenever you attain Minaret Lake. Though this in all probability gained’t trigger altitude illness, it might make the hike a lot extra of a battle in case you’re coming from sea degree. In that case, it’s in all probability price spending an evening in Mammoth Lakes earlier than the hike so as to give your physique just a little time to regulate.
Relying on the season you select to hike Minaret Lake, you could possibly encounter snow on the path, which might make the hike extra technical and doubtlessly treacherous. In the course of the summer time, the path ought to be clear and melted out, however early in the summertime or within the fall, you must positively examine the up to date path circumstances and snowfall totals for the season earlier than you try this hike.
Whereas the summer time months of July and August make for nice path circumstances, additionally they are the months when you can see essentially the most mosquitoes. On this space, mosquitoes could be a large nuisance and make your hike fairly depressing, so you should definitely convey bug spray and doubtlessly even insect-repellent clothes in case you’re mountain climbing within the top of summer time. Additionally, in case you’re backpacking, arrange your camp farther away from water, the place wind will assist preserve a number of the mosquitoes away.
Close to the start of this path, you’ll come to a stream crossing close to Johnston Lake. Later on this season, the water degree ought to be low, and the crossing shouldn’t be a difficulty in any respect, however early within the season, you’ll want to watch out making this crossing. When Michael & I did this hike in late June, the stream was about knee excessive and VERY chilly. Mountaineering poles might positively come in useful right here to keep up your stability within the water on slippery rocks.
This space of the Jap Sierras is crammed with a wide range of wildlife, however the greatest concern is black bears. Normally, black bears are fairly scared and skittish round people, however the bears right here could be a little extra daring since they’re extra accustomed to seeing folks round.
As with all bears, you must observe customary bear security ideas together with (however not restricted to) the next:
Make noise when you hike so wildlife is rarely startled by your presence.
At all times preserve your distance in case you see a bear.
By no means run from a bear.
At all times retailer your meals (and some other scented objects) at evening in both a bear field or bear canister.
Rangers ask that you just don’t convey bear spray with you on this space. Simply be sensible, make noise when you hike, and also you’ll probably keep away from a bear encounter.
And positively don’t depart meals in your automobile on the trailhead – use a bear locker for something you don’t convey with you on the path.