26E216 - Mirror Lake Trail

Shaver Lake, California (Fresno County)
Last Updated: 07/02/2018
5/5 (2 reviews)
Information
Nearby Trails
Status: Open
Typically Open: 06/15 - 11/01
Difficulty: 8-9
(DIFFICULT)
Length: 1.3 miles
Highest Elevation: 8972 feet
Duration: About 1 hour 30 minutes
Shape of Trail: Out & Back
Best Direction to Travel: N/A
Nearest Town: Shaver Lake
Nearest Town w/ Services: Shaver Lake
Official Road Name: 26E216
Management Agency: Sierra National Forest
District: High Sierra Ranger District
Distance:
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Highlights

Highlight: 26E216 - Mirror Lake Trail

This high mountain lake trail adds extra pucker factor with its steep, rocky, off camber winch hill where winch posts have been drilled and set in the rocks at two locations. Mirror Lake Trail is a hardcore rock crawling 4x4 trail that runs from Strawberry Lake Trail, near Sand Flats, to Mirror Lake at its north end. Rock crawling, swimming, fishing, camping and lake side relaxation in the high mountains of the Sierra National Forest make for one of the most challenging and rewarding 1.3 miles you can run. Mirror Lake Trail is one of many 4x4 trails in the Red Mountain off-road trail network which sits northeast of Shaver Lake and Southeast of Huntington Lake.

Video

Route Information

Technical Rating: (8-9)
(DIFFICULT)

Severe rock over 15". Frequent deep holes over 15". Shelves over 15". Mud bog conditions (long, deep, no form bottom). Over 30" water crossings with strong currents. Steep grades over 30 degrees. Sidehill over 30 degrees. May not be passable by stock vehicles. Experience essential. Body damage, mechanical breakdown, rollover probable. Extreme caution required.

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Description

Mirror Lake Trail is open 06/15-11/01 each year, but this is subject to extended closures / delayed openings. Forest Service Trail Status Mirror Lake Trail starts from the easy, but rocky and slow going Strawberry Lake Trail. A couple gradual increases in the difficulty of rock obstacles build up to the long, steep Winch Hill starting at Waypoint 5. Large boulders, tight squeezes around trees, steep descents, and steep climbs are continuous through out this trail. The more substantial obstacles are included in the waypoints below, but be prepared for continuous crawling until you reach the camping area at Mirror Lake. Once you reach the Lake, take some time to relax before you have to climb back up what you just came down.

Seasonal Information

Winter:Closed

Waypoints

1. Mirror Lake Trailhead

Start from the split at Strawberry Lake Trail. Mirror Lake Trail is on the left.

2. Rocky Curve (0.16 mi)

Continue around this Rocky Curve.

3. Little Up (0.22 mi)

Continue up this rocky section.

4. Side Hill (0.34 mi)

Continue around this rock scattered, slightly off camber hillside.

5. Winch Hill Lead in (0.44 mi)

Continue straight or get out and walk ahead to assess the trail for yourself. This is a common turnaround point for many. If you're unsure of completing this trail, park here and walk down to see the Winch Hill before you continue past this point. Turning around after this point and before the bottom of the Winch Hill can be difficult, and just as dangerous as the hill itself.

6. Winch Hill Start (0.48 mi)

Continue left, down the rocks. Pick your line carefully. A winch point has been set in the rocks here to help on your way back up.

7. Winch Hill Middle (0.53 mi)

Continue down. Another winch point has been set in the rocks here, on the east side of the trail.

8. Winch Hill End (0.57 mi)

Squeeze between this tree and jeep sized rock to make your way over the last section of the Winch Hill.

9. Rocks and Ruts (0.88 mi)

Continue on, through this boulder field where the the dirt has been dug up by other rigs loosing traction.

10. Log Run (0.96 mi)

Continue straight over the Log Run.

11. Rocky Uphill (0.99 mi)

Continue over or around the rocks on your way up this hill.

12. Lake and Camping (1.09 mi)

Continue to the left or stop and set up camp. This is the first of the camp sites near the lake.

13. Another Camp (1.21 mi)

Continue straight or stop and set up camp. This is another campsite, near the lake.

14. Another Camp / Trail End (1.3 mi)

This is the end of the trail. Turn around and head back up or stop and set up camp.

Directions to Trailhead

Trailhead Coordinates: 37.206300, -119.131150

Starting Point: Fresno, California

From Fresno: Take 168 east toward Huntington Lake for about 12 miles. Continue onto CA-168 / Tollhouse Road for about 21 miles. Turn left to stay on CA-168 for another 28.4 miles. Turn right on 8S10 ( Watch for the Red Mountain Trailhead sign.) After 3.25 miles, turn left on 8S42. Follow 8S42 for 3.5 miles to the Strawberry Lake Trailhead. Follow Strawberry Lake trail to the split in the trail and turn left onto Mirror Lake Trail.

Camping

There are dispersed camping opportunities all over this area. Sand Flats, Strawberry Lake, West lake, right here on Mirror Lake, or even Red Lake and Coyote Lake all offer some great, remote camping. Take your pick. There is camping everywhere and it's all pretty awesome.
Camping: 26E216 - Mirror Lake Trail

Land Use Issues

Seasonal Closures. Scheduled open time is 06/15-11/01, but subject to extended closures / delayed openings. High Sierra Ranger District 29688 Auberry Road Prather, CA 93651 (559) 855-5355 Forest Service Trail Status Motor Vehicle Use Map / MVUM

Writer Information

G. Martin

Mapping Crew - California
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This wheeler is a California native, born and raised in northern California and now living and wheeling in southern California. He enjoys exploring new trails and setting up camp in the remote outdoors. Always looking for new ideas on improving his outdoor "system", his Jeep is his main off-road tool, but he also incorporates ham radio, multiple mapping devices and a few other pieces of technology into his off-road adventures. You may come across him in the middle of the Mohave desert, the mountains of Big Bear, in the central Sierras near Shaver Lake or any other dirty, rocky road in the southwest. TrailsOffroad offers a focus point in G.Martin's offroad exploration.

Community

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Trail Reviews (3)

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Trail is open!

Author: Official Crew
Status: Seasonal Closure
Offroaded on:
Rating:
The Forest Service has delayed the opening of all Red Mountain Trails this year due to too much water and mud collecting at certain points on the trails. Opening date at this point is unknown.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Very challenging trail with an awesome mountain lake and great camping locations at the end.