Chittenden Lake Hike

This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Very Hard
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.
23.5 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.
991 m
User Ratings
These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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Directions to Trailhead

The Chittenden Lake Hike exhibits the beauty and grandeur of the High Sierra. Explore mixed pine forests, meadowlands, granite gardens, and crystalline alpine lakes. If you seek a scenic high effort, high reward type of adventure, then you have come to the right place.

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Route Description for Chittenden Lake Hike

Immerse yourself in the high country along the Chittenden Lake Hike. Venture through glaciated valleys, mixed forestlands, and granite gardens up to the shimmering alpine lake. There is no shortage of scenery to motivate even the most discouraged hikers along this route. Though this route can be completed as a challenging day hike, it makes for an epic overnight expedition through the backcountry. This path is not well signposted in areas, so we encourage the use of the trail GPS. Note those staying overnight will have to acquire a wilderness permit.

Setting out from the Fernandez trailhead, hike northwest. Shortly after you depart from the trailhead, you’ll reach a junction; keep right here. This path will guide you over several snow-melt streams before delivering you to yet another intersection. Again, keep right onto Trail 24E3, which will guide you northeast through the alpine terrain. At the next intersection, turn left onto the Lilian Lake Trail. This route will divert you west to Lilian Lake then onto Chittenden Lake.

You will be granted an amazing view of the postcard-worthy lake hemmed by granite bluffs, decorated with evergreens. Rejuvenate your tired feet in the chilly alpine waters, and when you are ready, head back along the path the way you came.

Getting to the Chittenden Lake Hike Trailhead

Access the Chittenden Lake Hike from the trailhead off Route 5S05.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    Backcountry Camping, wilderness permit required.

  • When to do


  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly


  • Route Signage


  • Crowd Levels


  • Route Type

    Out and back

Chittenden Lake Hike Elevation Graph

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Chittenden Lake Hike Reviews

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