Pets allowed
Allowed
Elevation Gain
1,000.00 ft (304.80 m)
Trail type
Loop
Distance
14.00 mi (22.53 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Living in Mammoth during long holiday weekends means one thing: the need to escape the crowds. This is a three-day backpacking trip, with a short hike around Saddlebag Lake to the campsite. The start of this trail can be fairly crowded with both backpackers and day hikers. This is a dog-friendly hike, but be aware of overheating possibilities and take necessary precautions to ensure your pup's safety. 

Lessons learned from this trip: 

  • If you are bringing your dog into the backcountry, make sure you are able to carry them out on your own and also understand how to prevent and treat heat exhaustion in your pet.
  • Always carry duct tape in your first aid kit for tent repairs.
  • Practice Leave No Trace Principles. 

Day One

After a relatively flat 2.5 miles from the trailhead, you'll arrive at Greenstone Lake. Take your time looking for a legal campsite, one that's not within the alpine meadows or 200 feet from the lake. Enjoy swimming in the lake and the stars for a relaxing night at camp. If you find a good campsite, hold on to it and use as your home base for these two nights. 

Day Two

Heading out from camp, bear left to Conness Lakes for alpine lake swimming. After you've gotten your fill, head back toward Greenstone Lake and you can continue on the 20 Lakes Basin Loop. 

The hike to Lake Helen is a little rocky, and requires some navigation around boulders. Helen Lake was quite crowded, but keep going to Odelle Lake. The trail from Lake Helen to Odelle Lake is extremely rocky, but eventually you'll come to Odelle Lake with far less visitors. Continue the loop and make your way back to your campsite. 

Day Three

Finish off day three with a leisurely walk around Saddlebag Lake, on the opposite side to complete a loop.

 

 

 

 

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Summer
Fall

Congestion

High

Parking Pass

Back Country Hiking Permit

Open Year-round

No

Open from

July 01 to October 31

Days

2

Pros

Alpine lakes. Dog friendly. Alpine meadows.

Cons

Can be extremely crowded near trailhead. Noticed lots of illegal camping.

Trailhead Elevation

9,800.00 ft (2,987.04 m)

Highest point

10,800.00 ft (3,291.84 m)

Features

Backcountry camping
Waterfalls
Fishing

Typically multi-day

Yes

Permit required

Yes

Permit self-issue on site

No

Location

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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