White Chief Canyon Trail

Difficulty
This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Hard
Duration
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.
4-5.5h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
11.4 km
Elevation
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
User Ratings
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Directions to Trailhead

The White Chief Canyon Trail is a beautiful adventure in the High Sierra that rewards its tired conquerors with incredible scenery. Get a workout in as you ascend into the high country and let the mountainscape render you speechless.

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Route Description for White Chief Canyon Trail

Indulge yourself in the remarkable alpine oasis along this demanding adventure. Wander mixed conifer forests, lush montane meadows, and granite gardens. Traveling at such high altitudes along exposed terrain, it is advised to ascend before noon to mitigate the chances of getting caught in an afternoon storm. Additionally, we encourage you to dress in layers and wear sun protection. Note much of the path is rocky and uneven, so wear a pair of comfy footwear! The park charges an entrance fee of $35USD per vehicle or $20USD per person for pedestrians or cyclists.

Embark on your adventure along the White Chief Canyon Hike from the Eagle-Mosquito Trailhead. Setting out from here, follow the White Chief Trail south, weaving through exposed meadows and shaded forests. Eventually, the path will pass the Crabtree Cabin before intersecting with the East Fork Kaweah River. The further you climb into the wilderness, the better the views. Marvel at the beauty of the granite peaks that frame the canyon.

You will ultimately reach the trail’s end in the mountain cirque bound by White Chief Peak and Vandever Mountain. Enjoy the expansive views of the mountainscape, then head back the way you came.

Getting to the White Chief Canyon Trail Trailhead

Access this hike via the Eagle-Mosquito Trailhead off the Mineral King Road.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    wilderness permits required

  • When to do

    May-October

  • Pets allowed

    No

  • Family friendly

    No

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    Moderate

  • Route Type

    Out and back

White Chief Canyon Trail Elevation Graph

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