Columbine Lake via Sawtooth Pass Trail
The Columbine Lake via Sawtooth Pass Trail is an incredible adventure reserved for experienced hikers. Get your heart rate up and challenge your limits when completing this demanding route as a day hike or take your time and tackle this trek as an overnight expedition.
View Columbine Lake via Sawtooth Pass Trail on Map
- Map Data: ©OpenStreetMap
- Tiles: ©CyclOSM
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Route Description for Columbine Lake via Sawtooth Pass Trail
Enjoy unrivaled alpine scenery along this high-country trek. Demanding a valiant effort, this trek will challenge even the fittest and fearless hikers. Climb above the treeline into the quintessential granite oasis of the Sierra Nevada, and revel in the crystalline lakes. Make sure to acclimate yourself before this hike and check the forecast for inclement weather. Dress in layers, pack a water filter and bring trekking poles. If you hope to tackle this trail in a day, head out before dawn to Note the park charges an entrance fee of $35USD per vehicle or $20USD per person for pedestrians or cyclists.
Setting out from the Sawtooth Pass Trailhead, the Columbine Lake via Sawtooth Pass Trail climbs up the Sawtooth Pass Trail. The initial stage of the trek ascends through mixed-conifer forest and montane meadows. Enjoy the lush vegetation and tree shade while you can because soon enough, the path graduate the timberline into the alpine. Eventually, you will reach the Monarch Lakes—this is a good spot to rest and rehydrate. Beyond this point, the terrain will increase in technicality—demanding the ascent of the rocky scree.
Take your time navigating the never-ending set of switchbacks up the rocky path, and you will ultimately reach Columbine Lake. Revel in the beauty of the crystalline pool bound by craggy granite ridges and rejuvenate your tired feet in the chilly water. Marvel at the expansive views of the High Sierra, then head back the way you came.
Getting to the Columbine Lake via Sawtooth Pass Trail Trailhead
Access this hike via the Sawtooth Trailhead off Mineral King Road.
Columbine Lake via Sawtooth Pass Trail Elevation Graph
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