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Dinkey Lakes Wilderness

General Maps Contacts Area Management Wilderness Laws


The United States Congress designated the Dinkey Lakes Wilderness (map) in 1984 and it now has a total of 30,863 acres. All of this wilderness is located in California and is managed by the Forest Service. The Dinkey Lakes Wilderness is bordered by the John Muir Wilderness to the east.


Here on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada, timbered, rolling terrain dominates most of Dinkey Lakes Wilderness. Almost all of it sits above 8,000 feet, with Three Sisters Peak soaring 10,619 feet near the 16 lakes clustered in the west-central region. Stands of white fir, red fir, and Jeffrey pine are interspersed with large mountain meadows, especially in the north-central region and along Helms Creek. Rocky outcroppings often break the skyline, and snow blankets much of the area from November until June. John Muir Wilderness lies just to the east and north. Trails are well suited for stock travel, but natural feed is scarce except in the meadows north of First Dinkey Lake and near Nelson Lake. Stock must be camped at least 500 feet from any shoreline. From Courtright Reservoir, the trail up Helms Creek reaches First Dinkey Lake after about 17 miles. Cattle still graze on sections of the area on permits issued prior to designation. Firewood will be very difficult to find near the lakes. Human use is rated as moderate.

Planning to Visit the Dinkey Lakes Wilderness?

Leave No Trace

How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Dinkey Lakes Wilderness.
  1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
  2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
  3. Dispose of Waste Properly
  4. Leave What You Find
  5. Minimize Campfire Impacts
  6. Respect Wildlife
  7. Be Considerate of Other Visitors
For more information on Leave No Trace, Visit the Leave No Trace, Inc. website.

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