Distance: 7 miles (11km) one way
Time: 8 hours round trip (not including stops for rest or picture taking)
Scenic alpine lakes, peaceful forests, and ever-changing meadows alive with animals—all this awaits the hiker of the 7-mile-long Twin Lakes Trail in Sequoia National Park. This out-and-back hike can be done in a single long day—or spread over two days by camping at either Clover Creek or near Twin Lakes. The trail serves as the springboard for longer loop hikes, either by climbing over Silliman Pass into Kings Canyon National Park or over JO Pass into the Jenny Lakes Wilderness in Sequoia National Forest. Trail distances are 7 miles (11 km) to Twin Lakes, 8 miles (13 km) to Silliman Pass, and 10 miles (16 km) to Ranger Lakes.
From the Lodgepole Campground, the trail ascends steadily through deep conifer forest with occasional small meadows blooming with seasonal wildflowers. After two miles, you reach Cahoon Meadow, a quintessential Sierra Nevada meadow nestled in a cove of granite. After skirting the meadow, the trail climbs in dense forest over Cahoon Gap and descends to Clover Creek with pleasant shaded campsites. Just beyond the creek is a junction with the trail to JO Pass. The main trail continues to the right towards Twin Lakes and steadily improving views of craggy Silliman Crest. Beyond the lakes, the trail climbs steeply to Silliman Pass and majestic views of the remote southern part of Kings Canyon National Park and the rugged Sierra Nevada beyond.
No permits are required for dayhikes. Backpackers can obtain overnight permits at the Lodgepole Visitor Center. Even if you have a reservation, you must still check in and pick up your permit prior to starting your trip. First campsite is at Cahoon Meadow (3 miles/4.8 km). Limit 30 people/day. For more information, contact the Sequoia & Kings Canyon NP Wilderness Office: Phone (559) 565-3766, Fax (559) 565-4239, E-mail SEKI_Wilderness_Office@nps.gov.
Help us keep this place beautiful. Take only pictures. Leave only footprints. Please pack out your trash.
Know the Bear Facts! Whether staying in the picnic area or going for a longer hike, always store food away from bears. Use large, brown bear-proof boxes to store food and scented items. Never leave food or scented items unattended.
Be Safe! Bring plenty of drinking water and snacks/lunch. Wear sturdy hiking boots or shoes with good traction, as well as long pants (due to ticks and poison oak). Wear a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Bring insect repellent.