Wrights Lake to Twin Lakes

Distance: 6.5 miles

Location: Desolation Wilderness, CA

Type: Out-&-Back

Rating: Moderately Difficult

Length: 3.5 to 4 hours

Trailhead Directions: Google Maps

Permits: Day-use permits are located at the trailhead:

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Parking: Parking is located in a small, paved lot at the trailhead.

NOTE: Parking is limited at the trailhead. Additional parking lots are located prior to turning right to continue on Wrights Lake Road. These lots are approximately 1 mile from the trailhead, which adds 2 miles to the trek (it’s an easy walk to the trailhead, so don’t be discouraged if you are unable to park at the trailhead).

Preparation:  Sunscreen, water, snacks and comfortable hiking shoes.

The Hike:

The start of the trail is marked by a sign reading “Twin Lakes Trailhead” and a gate reading “Road Closed”:

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Continue down the paved path until this sign is reached (day-use permits are located here):


The first portion of the hike follows along a dirt trail in a heavily wooded area. Once this sign is reached, continue straight (Twin Lks, Island Grouse; Hemlock Smith):


Throughout the hike, there are various signs that point in the direction of Twin Lakes. However, after a mile, the trail turns from a dirt path to exposed granite and is marked by a series of rocks and “trail ducks”:

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Staying on the trail is somewhat tricky, but there are enough trail ducks to stay on track. Shortly after the terrain transitions, Enchanted Pools and Enchanted Falls comes into view (a great place for a break!):

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Continue up the mountain towards Twin Lakes. After a steady uphill climb, a smaller lake comes into view (on the left):


Continue up the mountain until the Twin Lakes come into view:

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Enjoy the views of Wrights Lake and Desolation Wilderness before taking the same trail back down the mountain. This is a perfect hike for anyone looking for a peaceful weekend escape. The crowds were minimal when we hiked, but an early start is always a good idea!