Dogs No Dogs
Lake · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers
Need to Know
Backcountry permit required for any overnight camping.
Taking the left fork coming from Bridalveil Creek or Deer Camp, the first mile of this trail is alongside Chilnualna Creek through a few lush wildflower meadows. The ascent up the Buena Vista Crest is not necessarily steep, but very steady over the entire 5 miles of this trail.
You reach the first of the Chilnualna Lakes at about 3 miles, right after the trail makes somewhat of a noticeable left turn. The lake is fairly shallow and quickly silting in towards the middle of the summer. The surrounding blueberry bushes do make this a nice camping spot if you don't mind the mosquitoes.
The second lake is another half mile away, but off trail to the east. You'll reach the third lake at about 4.5 miles right before the final, somewhat steeper ascent to Buena Vista Lake. It's somewhat similar to the first and can be equally mosquito-ridden. The reward for making it up the final granite slope is an amazing vista north all the way to the Cathedral Range and Half Dome
as well as Mount Starr King.
Shared By: Tilman Giese