Hike-in Required
Open Year-round
Water Temperature
100.00 °F (37.78 °C)
Sensitive Habitat
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.

Shepherd Hot Spring is another of the abundant hot springs along California's Eastern Sierra. Lying in a meadow just south of the town of Mammoth Lakes, Shepherd is a single cement pool built adjacent to the source. The temperature of the pool can be adjusted with a valve on a pipe that carries water from the source spring located about 20 feet away.

Due to its relatively simple driving directions, Shepherd Hot Spring has a tendency to see a few more people than some of the other nearby springs. In a maze of unmarked dirt roads, many of these springs, such as Crab Cooker, require more complex navigation and high-clearance vehicles to reach. 

Accessed by two unpaved roads navigable by most passenger vehicles under dry conditions, the Shepherd Hot Spring pool is large enough to comfortably fit four people, maybe six if soakers don't mind getting cozy with each other. The water temperature hovers just over 100 degrees when the pipe from the source is on. The source itself is much hotter, but the size of the soaking pool ensures that the water cools significantly. 

A small dirt parking area lies immediately beside the tub, and though camping is prohibited at the spring, camping on public land is abundant slightly west of the spring. There are no bathroom or trash facilities of any kind at the spring.

Logistics + Planning



Parking Pass

Not Required


Beautiful scenery. Several nearby soaking options.


Can be crowded. Access is impassable in snowy conditions.


Sensitive Habitat

Number of pools




Had this place to myself the whole time I was there.
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