Hiking California's Golden Trout Wilderness
by Suzanne Swedo (Falcon Guides)
© Suzanne Swedo/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
I took my 9 year old son on his first real backpack. Instead of going to Cottonwood, we turned right as we topped out of the basin and went to Muir Lake, which the ranger told us was less crowded and had good fishing. I don't believe there are any fish in the lake, but we shared it with only a deer and a family of ducks for the time we were there. The lake was absolutely beautiful, and the views of mountains and meadows along the way were definitely worth the effort.
We also went over the mountain to the east of the Cottonwood/Muir Lake junction to see Hidden lake, which is on the forrest service map, but has no trail. It is hard to describe the view of the lake, but it was worth taking the time to see it.
The trail is very clearly marked almost all the way. It was a fairly difficult hike for my son and I, but again, he is small, I am 48 and not in great condition and the altitude is definitely a factor.
Hiking out on Friday, we saw alot of parties going in to Cottonwood, but midweek, we had no problem getting a permit and we saw very few people.
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