Dinkey Lakes

The Dinkey Lakes Wilderness located east of Fresno California is a gem of the Sierras. Multiple high mountain lakes all close together and each nested into the mountains at a different elevation.

I split this hike into two short hikes. You could do it as a long day hike, but what’s the hurry? The lakes are beautiful, warm and inviting. Bring your swim suit during warm weather since many of the lakes are shallow and perfect for an afternoon dip.

Highlights: Lakes, nice forest, mountain views

  • Near: Fresno, CA
  • Distance: Cliff Lake Base camp 5 miles – Loop from Cliff Lake 10 miles/ Day Hike from Willow Meadow 11 miles
  • Elevation Gain/Loss: 1400 ft.
  • Hike Time: 2 days Cliff Lake Backpack/ 6 hour day hike from Willow Meadow Trailhead
  • Dinkey Creek Campground: Reserve America
  • Difficulty: 6/10
  • Trail Condition: well maintained trail
  • GPX Download File: >>CLICK HERE<<
  • Tom Harrison Map: >>CLICK HERE<<
  • Dog Friendly: Yes
  • Kid Friendly: Yes
  • Rating: 4/5

Wilderness Permits:
High Sierra Ranger District
P.O. Box 559
Prather, CA 93651
(559) 855-5360

Getting to the Cliff Lake Trailhead:

From Los Angeles – 5 fwy (north) to 99 hwy (north) to Fresno. From Fresno take the 168 hwy. (east) to Dinkey Creek Rd. (right) to McKinley Grove Rd. (right) to Courtright wy. (left) to trail head.

Cliff Lake Google Map Link


Cliff Lake Trail Detail



Trail Profile to Cliff Lake Base Camp


Lake Loop Trail Profile


Mystery Lake Trail Profile


Getting to the Willow Meadow Trailhead:

From Los Angeles – 5 fwy (north) to 99 hwy (north) to Fresno. From Fresno take the 168 hwy. (east) to Dinkey Creek Rd. (right) to Rock Creek Rd. (left) to trail head.

Willow Meadow Google Link



Dinkey Lakes Sunset

Dinkey Lakes Sunset




Second Dinkey Lake


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