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Trail where the oldest known tree in the world lives.


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Map Key

3.6

Miles

5.9

KM

Point to Point

10,180' 3,103 m

High

9,613' 2,930 m

Low

624' 190 m

Up

668' 204 m

Down

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

27%

Max Grade (15°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Birding · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Family Friendly The route is educational. It has trail markers and a trail map that describes what is at every marker. It is an amazing trail if your family is up to the elevation changes.

Closed during the winter season.

Description

The Methuselah Loop Trail; the trail with the oldest known tree (4800 years) living today. This is located in the White Mountains in Inyo National Forest.

The drive isn't to bad getting here; the roads are paved the whole way. There are some steep inclines and winding turns, so you'll want to be careful. There are no street lights or anything, and the nearest town is quite a ways away, so make sure you have anything you need.

The visitor center, "Schulman Grove," Is the destination to set your GPS to if you would like to drive to the Methuselah trail. There is a parking lot and the center itself is very nice.

You can pick up trail maps a the beginning of the trails. The Methuselah Loop Trail itself has points of interest numbered as you travel along. If you follow the trail map, it will tell you about each point of interest. It is very educational about the Bristlecone pines, if you are interested.

The trail is 4.2 miles, self guided and USUALLY easy to follow, unless there has been heavy snowfall. The trail isn't too difficult, but there is roughly an 800 foot elevation change. What makes it more difficult is the fact that you are up in the 10,000 foot elevation range and the air is thin. You can't push yourself or you'll be easily winded.

The trail on average at a smooth pace takes between 2-3 hours.

Important Note
Make sure you have plenty of water! Because of the high altitude, you breath a lot more and faster; your sweat evaporates faster, and humidity is lower at higher altitudes. You may not realize how much water your body is losing.

The trail is pretty cool because of the altitude, so heat isn't really an issue, though you may want to bring a hat to protect yourself from sunburn. Make sure that you have snacks and whatever you need, because again, there is nothing on the trail in terms of food, water, bathrooms, etc.

Another great thing about this place is the solitude. If you hate going to a national park and being around tons of people, that is not an issue here. I didn't see a single person the whole day I was here last.

Flora & Fauna

Bristlecone Pines are the highlight here.

Shared By:

Ty Duckett

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 13 votes

#611

Overall
  4.6 from 13 votes
5 Star
69%
4 Star
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3 Star
8%
2 Star
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1 Star
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Trail Rankings

#74

in California

#611

Overall
7 Views Last Month
2,032 Since Nov 23, 2015
Intermediate Intermediate

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Photos

Methuselah Loop Trail.
Nov 9, 2015 near Dixon L…, CA
Methuselah Grove.
Nov 9, 2015 near Dixon L…, CA
Methuselah Loop Trail.
Nov 9, 2015 near Dixon L…, CA
Bristlecone pine and sky.
Nov 24, 2015 near Bishop, CA
Hillsides with nothing but Bristlecone pines.
Feb 16, 2021 near Bishop, CA
Watching the death bristlecone pine tree.
Nov 24, 2015 near Dixon L…, CA

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Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

May 22, 2022
Andy Taylor
Scenic and informative hike. A few small patches of snow on the trail but easy to cross. Fairly crowded. Fine weather. 4.5mi
Sep 26, 2021
Jerry Roush
Jun 17, 2021
Mike Maxwell
Apr 2, 2021
Bear Rinehart
Aug 14, 2020
Ryan Gillikin
15h 30m
Jul 13, 2019
JP T
Jun 10, 2019
Raquel Z
Oct 4, 2018
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