Hiking the Hoover Wilderness

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Beginning in central California and spilling into Nevada's Great Basin, the Sierra Nevada mountain range includes some of California's most iconic landscapes ‚ÄĒ Yosemite National Park, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, Inyo National Forest and the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, among others.

Bordering Yosemite National Park, the Hoover Wilderness is a spectacular piece of the Sierra Nevada Range. Entry into the Hoover Wilderness on certain trails entering from the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest is limited to reduce the impact to the landscape and to improve the visitor experience.

Take in breathtaking views on a wilderness hike in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest

Established as a primitive area in 1931 and later designated in 1964 as protected Wilderness, the Hoover Wilderness is widely known for its extreme mountainous terrain, glistening alpine lakes, and lush meadows. With steep terrain that ranges from around 7,000 feet (2133 m) to more than 12,000 feet (3657 m), the Hoover has few forested areas and offers a landscape of granite basins, rugged canyons, and jagged peaks. During the summer, diverse wildflowers are spread over the intermittent meadows found throughout the wilderness area. 

A dirt trail winds along a mountainside into the Hoover Wilderness.

Hoover Wilderness (Photo Courtesy: Scott Clemons)

An overnight wilderness permit is required year-round for the Hoover Wilderness.  From the last Friday in June through September 15, wilderness permits are limited by a trailhead quota. During this quota season, half of the wilderness permits for each trailhead are available on a first-come, first-served basis at the Bridgeport Ranger Station. Making an advanced reservation during the quota season is the best way to secure desired dates for your trip. Advanced reservations for the Hoover Wilderness will become available on March 18, 2020.

Plan to pick up your reserved permit at the Bridgeport Ranger Station by 11 a.m. on the date of entry. Reserved permits can also be picked up a day or two before entry date. After 11 a.m. on the date of the trip, all reserved permits that have not been picked-up will be made available for first-come, first-served visitors.

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