Valentine Lake Trail

This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
14.6 km
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
680 m
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Directions to Trailhead

An underrated route within Inyo National Forest, Valentine Lake Trail is without a doubt worth the effort! Boasting sublime scenery characteristic of the eastern Sierra Nevada Mountain range, Valentine Lake Trail is an ideal route for intermediate hikers and families with older children.

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Route Description for Valentine Lake Trail

Sections of the Valentine Lake Trail lack much shade, so it is therefore recommended that you protect yourself from the effects of the powerful alpine sun by wearing sunscreen and a good hat. The Valentine Lake Trail is also within the high alpine environment of the eastern Sierra Nevada Mountain range. This means that altitude sickness is a tangible hazard and that it is important you monitor yourself and your group members for its symptoms.

With your vehicle parked along Sherwin Creek Road, follow the Valentine Lake Trail as it makes its way south. The terrain will begin to incline steadily at first, and then rapidly as the trail turns into a series of switchbacks to help aid you in your climbing of the elevation. After the initial switchback section, the pathway will straighten out and you will soon arrive at a junction within the trail.

At the junction, continue on the Valentine Lake Trail by taking the southern pathway. The trail will travel adjacent to a creek before crossing the creek and veering southwest. The Valentine Lake Trail will then arrive at Sherwin Creek where it will continue south along the creek's eastern shore. After one last switchback section, the route will deliver you to beautiful Valentine Lake where incredible views of the surrounding landscape can be enjoyed! Once you're ready, simply backtrack your steps towards the trailhead.

Getting to the Valentine Lake Trail Trailhead

The Trailhead for Valentine Lake Trailhead is located off of Sherwin Creek Road.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    Sherwin Creek Campground

  • When to do


  • Pets allowed


  • Family friendly

    Older Children only

  • Route Signage


  • Crowd Levels


  • Route Type

    Out and back

Valentine Lake Trail Elevation Graph

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Valentine Lake Trail Reviews

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