Shepherd Pass Trail


Some sections of the Shepherd Pass trail were washed out by a flash flood on July 22, 2013.

The Shepherd Pass trail climbs a demanding 6,000 feet from the Owens Valley to 12,000-foot Shepherd Pass. Then, it enters Sequoia National Park and joins the John Muir Trail near Tyndall Creek. Due to a persistent snowfield, steep terrain and talus, the Shepherd Pass trail is frequently impassable to stock above about 10,800 feet.

Common Destinations: Mahogany Flat, Shepherd Pass, John Muir Trail

Download area map for trail names.
To purchase more detailde maps or guidebooks of the area, visit

Vehicles with stock trailers should park at the Shepherd Pack Trail parking lot.

Shepherd Pass Trail Recreation Guide (pdf)

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Weather
Reservations: Reserve up to 6 months in advance at
Permit Info:
  • Wilderness permit required year round for overnight trips.
  • Day use does not requier a permit.
  • May 1 through November 1 overnight visitors are limited to 15 people per day.
Closest Towns:
  • Independence, CA (food, gas, lodging)
  • Lone Pine, CA (full service, hospital)
Restroom: No Restrooms. Bury human waste away from water sources.
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Maps
  • USDA Forest Service: A Guide to the John Muir Wilderness and Sequoia-Kings Canyon Wilderness
  • USGS Quad: Mount Williamson
  • National Geographic: Sequoia Kings Canyon
  • Tom Harrison: Mount Whitney High Country

General Information


Low clearance vehicles and vehicles with trailers should park at the Shepherd Pack Trail. Then, Visitors can reach the Shepherd Pass Trail via the 1.4 mile long Shepherd Pack Trail.


From US Highway 395, in Independence, CA:

  • Turn west on Market Street. Travel 4.3 miles to Foothill Rd.
  • Turn south on Foothill Rd and travel 2.8 miles to the Shepherd Pack Trailhead.
  • Approximately 1/2 mile past the Shepherd Pack Trailhead, turn west on a small, rough dirt road.
  • Follow the main track approximately 1.3 miles to the Shepherd Pass Trailhead. This road is unpaved and may be quite rough.


Stock users should park at the stock trailhead, and ride the Shepherd Pack Trail the the Shepherd Pass Trailhead.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information



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Permit required?: Y

Horse Riding & Camping

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Areas & Activities



  Latitude : 

  Longitude : 

  Elevation : 
6,300 ft. at trailhead - 12,000 ft. at Shepherd Pass


USFS Emblem and Travel Management

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