Minarets Backcountry

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Suggested Flies for the Minarets area:
Eastern Sierra Hatch Selection

Other Local Favorites:

Streamer Flies:
Woolly Bugger #8-10
Marabou Muddler #8-10
Matuku #8-10

Hare's Ear Nymph #16-18
Pheasant Tail Nymph #16-18
Bird Nest #16-18
A.P. Nymph #16-18
Golden Stone Nymph #8-10

Olive Caddis #14-20
Yellow Humpy #14-16
Royal Wulff #14-16
Chernobyl Ant #14-16
Madam X #14-16


Minarets Directions

To get to the Minarets, from Oakhurst, CA, drive north on CA 41 for 3-4 miles until you reach a prominently signposted junction with Bass Lake Road. Follow Bass Lake Road around the north side of Bass Lake for another 3-4 miles until you reach a turn for Beasore Meadow on your left, signposted for Clover Meadow. Head north along the long and winding Beasore Road (a mixture of pavement and graded dirt, passable to all passenger cars), to Jackass Meadow and Jackass Meadow Trailhead. Use the Isberg Map to locate the trailheads. To reach Norris Trailhead, go 3/4 mile further on Beasore Road and you will take the spur road, 5S86, to the trailhead. Fernandez Trailhead is from the next spur road, 5S05, proceeds to a location just 3/4 miles east of Norris TH. The Isberg Pass trailhead is from Granite Peak Road, 3 miles east of Jackass Meadows. Shortly after passing the Clover Meadow Ranger Station, the road forks. Follow the left fork, signed at that junction for the Isberg Pass trail (the right fork heads to Granite Creek campground), until it crosses the West Fork of Granite Creek via a bridge. (Several unsigned spur roads are encountered along here, keep to the main, most-traveled road). An unsigned junction is encountered immediately after the creek crossing; turn right here and drive another mile or so to the trailhead. Parking is found on the south side of the road, a short way east of the trailhead.

The Minarets are a set of jagged peaks known as aretes within the Ritter Range. They can be approached from wither the eastern side of Mammoth Lakes or the western side of Isberg Pass. The peaks were named in 1868 by the California Geographical Survey under the direction by Joshua Whitney. The region was known as the Minaret Wilderness until 1984 when the name was changed to the Ansel Adams Wilderness.

From the Fernandez trailhead you can reach the following:
Gem Lake Joe Crane Lake: (9 acres) at 9623’ ele. has Rainbows up to 11”. 8.5 miles from the trailhead.
Sadler Lake: (17 acres) At 9,300 feet elevation with a 25' depth. 8 miles from the Fernandez trailhead. Contains both Brookies and Rainbows in the 8-12 inch range.
McClure Lake: (20 acres) with a 50' depth at 9594’ ele has Brookies and Rainbows 8-9”, and the Isberg Lakes. McClure Lake was named for Lt. Nathaniel McClure of the U.S. Calvary who was stationed here in 1894-95, Lt. McClure named Sadler Lake after his corporal.

From the Isberg trailhead you can reach:
Rockbound Lake: At 10,120 feet elev. Consists of Goldens Hybrids

From the Mammoth trailhead, you can reach:
North Fork of the San Joaquin: Contains Rainbows and Golden hybrids below Hemlock crossing.
Twin Island Lake 2 (17 acres) at 9659’ ele. is the southern most and will have Brookies.
Twin Island Lake 1 (14 acres) at 9829’ ele. contains Goldens as well as the outlet stream.
Ritter Lakes: Consists of Brookies and Golden Hybrids

Fishing Regulations (Effective March 1st, 2021)

All Lakes and Reservoirs:

Open all Year. 5 trout per day. 10 trout in possession.

All creeks and tributaries:

From the last Saturday in April through November 15, 5 trout daily bag limit, 10 trout in possession; and, from November 16 through the Friday preceding the last Saturday in April, 0 trout bag limit, artificial lures with barbless hooks only and trout must be released unharmed and not removed from the water.


© 2021 Steve Schalla
This page is not to be copied without my explicit permission.
Twin Island Lakes Mt. Ritter Rockbound Lake Isberg Trailhead Fernandex Trailhead Slide Canyon Sadler Lake McClure Lake Joe Crane Lake Mammoth Trailhead Merced Headwaters Agnew Lake Backcountry Upper MF San Joaquin Isberg Pass Isberg Pass Merced Headwaters