Stanislaus National Forest Wilderness Areas

A granite cliff rises up above a picturesque alpine lakeEmigrant Lake, Emigrant Wilderness (Photo by J. Silverman) The Stanislaus National Forest (STF) manages the entire Emigrant Wilderness and co-manages the Carson-Iceberg and Mokelumne Wilderness Areas.  Each one is a unique natural landscape, offering hiking, backpacking, and horseback riding opportunities (see link for each below). All overnight trips in these wilderness areas require a free permit (see below), while day-use does not.

Wilderness Permits
To learn more about wilderness permits, click here.

Trailhead Access to Wilderness
Most of our wilderness trailheads remain inaccessible due to snow until mid- to late-May or June. Check the Recreation Conditions Report to see what trailheads are open/accessible. Note: scroll down below the map on the Recreation page.

Tells Us About the Trail and Camp Conditions in Wilderness
After you return from your trip, please consider sending us feedback about conditions using this form.

Volunteering for Wilderness
Stanislaus Wilderness Volunteers is a non-profit partner organization that offers opportunities for the public to participate in stewardship of the wilderness through education and hands-on field projects. Visit to learn more.

Long-distance Trips
The Stanislaus National Forest does not issue permits for destinations south of Tioga Road (CA Hwy 140) within Yosemite NP.  Permits that start at Stanislaus trailheads can be written to exit at Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite NP.  The Stanislaus cannot issue permits for the John Muir Trail, the High Sierra Route, to/for the Mount Whitney Zone, or for long-distance trips on the Pacific Crest Trail (north of Donner Pass or South of Tuolumne Meadows).  Contact Yosemite National Park, the Inyo National Forest, or the Pacific Crest Trail Association respectively for these routes and areas.

If you have questions, please contact one of the offices.  You may leave a message for call backs. See our homepage for contact numbers.

If you have questions about visiting a Wilderness Area, please contact one of the offices during business hours.


Office Phone Information

Forest Supervisor's Office
Sonora, CA

Groveland Ranger District
Groveland, CA
(CA Highway 120)

Calaveras Ranger District
Hathaway Pines, CA
(CA Highway 4)

Summit Ranger District
Pinecrest, CA
(CA Highway 108)

To learn more about each wilderness click one of the photos below.

Emigrant Wilderness

The 113,000 acre Emigrant Wilderness, bordered by Yosemite National Park on the south, the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest on the east, and State Highway 108 on the north; is an elongated area that trends northeast about 25 miles in length and up to 15 miles in width.



Mokelumne Wilderness

Designated in 1964, the 105,165 acre Mokelumne Wilderness straddles the crest of the central Sierra Nevada, within the Stanislaus, Eldorado, and Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forests. This area is bordered by State Highway 4 on the south and State Highway 88 on the north. Watersheds drain to the Mokelumne River on the west slope and the Carson River on the east slope.


Carson-Iceberg Wilderness

The 161,000 acre Carson-Iceberg Wilderness straddles the crest of the Sierra Nevada range, divided almost evenly between the Stanislaus and Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forests. Here you'll find spectacular high country, with several peaks rising above 10,000 feet, broad river valleys, perennial creeks with small waterfalls, granite-strewn slopes, and meadow-filled valleys.


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