Exploring McGee Creek

The Eastern Sierra is known for its stunning landscapes of snow-capped mountains, frozen lakes, and rushing streams. However, the big winter this year has limited early season options, making it harder to find trails that are snow-free for hiking. But fear not, there are still places you can go for a winter adventure, like the McGee Creek Trailhead near Crowley Lake. 


Woman hiking McGee Creek trail close to Crowley Lake California Hiking McGee Creek trail



The McGee Creek Trailhead is located about 10 miles south of Mammoth Lakes and offers fantastic views of the mountains and the creek. The trailhead parking was closed, but we were able to find a spot to park off the road near the pack station. We decided to go for a short walk and see what we could find.

As soon as we stepped onto the trail, we were hit with the sound of rushing water. The creek was full of snow-melt water, and we could see the snow-filled mountains in the distance. The trail was snow-free for the first 1.5 miles, making it easy for us to walk and enjoy the scenery. The trail is well maintained and gave us no trouble.


As we hiked along the trail, we noticed the creek was covered by snow bridges in spots. The views were incredible, and we stopped often to take it all in. The sound of the rushing water in the creek was a reminder of the power of nature and how it can transform a landscape in just a few months.

We continued our walk along the trail, enjoying the peaceful surroundings and the beauty of the mountain landscape. Although we couldn’t get very far due to the snow, the short walk was still worth it. We were glad we made the effort to come out and enjoy the outdoors in the spring.

woman standing at a John Muir wilderness sign on the McGee Creek trail. Hiking McGee Creek in the John Muir wilderness
Brent Cooley

Brent Cooley

Brent lives a life of adventure, splitting his time between the rugged mountains of the Eastern Sierra and the majestic oceans of the world. He enjoys sharing his love of the outdoors with his wife Emily and encourages everyone to embrace their sense of adventure by experiencing the grandeur of nature.

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