Big Pine Area Trails

Inyo National Forest - Wilderness Permits, CA

Big Pine Creek South Fork JM24


ICE and SNOW ALERT- Mountain elevations in this area traditionally have ice and snow until late June or early July.

Permit Availability

Entrance Description

Big Pine South Fork trail climbs beneath the Palisades Glacier and jagged peaks of the Middle Palisades to reach Brainard and Finger Lakes. The bridge across the South Fork Creek was destroyed by avalanche (spring 2011) so expect to get your feet wet and use caution with high spring runoff. The trail beyond Willow Lake becomes indistinct with rock cairns marking the way to the upper lakes. This section of trail is not recommended for stock.

Know Before You Go:


Big Pine South Fork Area:

  • No campfires at any of the lakes; or along South Fork Creek
  • Food and refuse must be stored so that animals cannot get into the food or trash.
  • There are several different trails in the area Check the area map for the correct trail name.
  • Stock is not recommended beyond Willow Lake.
  • John Muir Wilderness regulations apply.
  • Sequoia and Kings Canyon wilderness regulations apply if entering the park.(includes Cross Country travel to Palisade Basin area; no night box permit pickup)
  • Deadline: Reservation will be canceled unless the permit pick up instructions are completed before the deadline. Instructions are in the confirmation letter.
  • Only the group leader or alternate leader may pick up the permit; the person picking up the permit must be going on the wilderness trip.
  • BE SURE YOUR DATES AND TRAIL ARE CORRECT - The entire group must start on the trail on the entry date listed. Reservations cannot be changed or transferred.

USFS Webpage for: Big Pine Creek South Fork.


A: Available for online reservation (click to book entry date)
L: Accepting Lottery Application (click to apply for the lottery)
W: Available at the Facility
R: Reserved
C: Closed
X: Not available
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