Alder lake was nice, but Gem lake and surrounding vistas are awesome! We were very happy that we decided to hike the extra mile or so to Gem. This area covers about 1.7 miles from 9,100 feet to 9,420 feet as a freestone stream. Have to cross a couple of large snow patches before that, too. Recommend to start before 7am to avoid the heat. The Rush Creek Trail head is located by the horse corral just past Silver Lake Resort. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, camping, and backpacking and is best used from April until September. Then the two lakes you come across are just beautiful. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until September. Distance: 3.38 miles. This is a fairly strenuous trail, especially the Agnew Pass trail. It was a perfect lunch spot for us, and my husband enjoyed a dip and swim in this beautiful cold water before lunch. That said it is very worth the climb because you get to see so much more then you expected. Agnew Lake is pretty meh overall (very industrialized). Cool temperature and clear skies! Instead we set our sights on a easy walk up to Gem Lake to spend some time in the backcountry. Well worth the trek up! Gem is pretty but there is no easy way to reach the water at all. Agnew Lake is alright but Gem Lake is beautiful. Nice hike. Soon, the trail begins a steady climb parallel to the June Lake Road. Needed micro spikes from there on up. The first lake, Agnew, is industrial with SCE dam and equipment all over. A peak-bagging odyssey from Kearsarge Pass to Mount Whitney. Difficulty: Strenuous. Grant and I climb Tower Peak deep in the Hoover Wilderness October 9, 2019 John Muir Trail 2019: Week 3. It makes frequent 50-200 feet ups and downs along most of the route, especially between the east side of Gem Lake and the junction with Pacific Crest Trail. It is fishable between Gem and Waugh Lake. Even with waterproof boots the water is just moving too fast to cross safely. It crosses a smaller waterfall/stream so waterproof shoes would come in handy. The old tracks they used to haul up equipment are still in use it looks like. There’s several nice developed campsites around the lake, with a few that are closer to the water for easy cooking/drinking/swimming access. There is a patch of snow that's sketchy if dont what to cross that you can go up the trolley track and get back on the trail. The views at the top of Gem lake & Agnew lake were well worth the effort. Started off around 10am. Leave early as it gets hot! Rush Creek Trail to Gem Lakes, Inyo National Forest, CA [OC] learn more #camping— Jennifer Perl (@jenniferperl44) May 23, 2018 from Twitter May 23, 2018 at 06:20PM via Jennifer Perl RECOMMENDED ROUTE The Rush Creek trail heads up past Gem Lake and Waugh Lake to intersect the Pacific Crest Trail. Parking wasn't hard to find because you can park on the street if the lots are full. Would recommend to a friend. Being on the National Forest System trails listed below and shown on the attached map. Middle Rush Creek Lake is a classic high mountain lake. Highly recommend! The Rush Creek Trailhead is located by the horse corral just past Silver Lake Resort. Fishing for catch and release brookies is awesome this year. Unfortunately, because of the incredible views, the trail is … Beautiful waterfalls, great workout! Definitely worth the extra hiking. This trail is definitely a climb but keeping good pace and breathing well make it very doable. Made it all the way to Gem. When you hit the junction at Rush Creek you are only 0.5 miles and about 200 feet of elevation gain from the lake. RECOMMENDED ROUTE Agnew Meadows to Thousand Island Lake 8.3 mi 13.4 km • 2,091' Up 637.2 m Up • 600' Down 182.81 m Down. The views around every corner was great. You can walk along Gem to extend the hike. Trek down was tricky because of the icy trail in some area’s but got down before dark. Emily and I were using a permit I had originally pulled to attempt a climb of Mount Lyell. As others have said there is no shade. Mammoth…, CA. A couple minor snow crossings but nothing major. Great hike. Strings of Pack Mules Haul Sand and Cement to Repair Waugh Lake Dam Southern California Edison Company is the owner of power dams on the Rush Creek series of lakes, Alger, Gem and Waugh Lakes. After you reach gem the trail cuts inland a bit and you loose the view of the lake from the trail until about half way around where you can rock scramble to get the view back. Rush Creek to Clark Lakes to Thousand Island Lake [CLOSED] is a 25.2 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near June Lake, California that features a lake and is rated as difficult. Start of trail was a bit confusing from the campground, but you can continue on the road for about 5oo yards to reconnect to the trail head as the signs at the campground said the trail was closed due to flooding. Difficulty: Very Difficult. Somehow, in our 5 years here, this was the first time we’ve seen a Giant Blazing Star: Agnew Lake, with mysterious floaty raft in the middle: Gem Lake, once 3 lakes close together and now a huge backcountry lake after being dammed: Also, bring a hat as there is no shade! Fern Lake Trail. Distance: 3.4 miles round trip. This trail presented a tough climb up & a difficult stream crossing due to the snow melt. Alger Lakes via Rush Creek Trail [CLOSED] is a 17.2 mile out and back trail located near Lee Vining, California that features a lake and is rated as difficult. We walked uphill for almost 5 miles to Gem Lake. And you can keep going around, but the conditions were pretty icy so we didn’t. The bad: Very little shade so it's challenging during a hot day. It's a tough lake to fish. The elevation of Waugh Lake is about 9,500. 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