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“Pic of the Week”, January 6, 2023: Heather Lake, Sequoia National Park

04 Hike to Heather Lake

Heather Lake is a popular day hike destination in California’s Sequoia National Park.  The trail begins from the Wolverton parking area, heads north (part of the Lakes Trail) and over 4.1 miles climbs about 2,000 ft to Heather Lake (situated at 9,280 ft).  It’s considered a moderately difficult hike.

There are two options to getting to Heather Lake from the Lakes Trail: 
1) The Hump Trail requires more elevation gain (about 200 ft), is shadier, and doesn’t have the exposure of the Watchtower Trail.  It is the safer option, even if it is slightly longer.
2) The Watchtower Trail is not for those with a fear of heights as it takes you on a ledge blasted from a sheer cliff for a half mile, high in Tokopah Valley, above the Marble Fork of the Kaweah River canyon.  The views are spectacular, but it is downright dangerous when icy.

Heather Lake itself has a rocky shore lined with grasses, willows and scattered firs.  It’s nice to rest and have a snack or picnic lunch.  From Heather Lake you can continue further to Emerald and Pear Lake (where backpacking camping is allowed), or you can return to the trailhead.

Click on thumbnails below to enlarge:

 

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