Shadow Creek Trail

The Shadow Creek trail travels past glacier-fed lakes and icy streams at the base of the Minarets and Mount Ritter. The trail starts at Agnew Meadows (shuttle bus stop #1). For the first three miles to Olaine Lake, the Shadow and River Trails are combined. At the trail junction where River Trail follows the San Joaquin River, the Shadow Creek Trail turns up Shadow Creek to climb past Shadow Lake and connect with the John Muir Trail. Hikers can go north or south on the John Muir Trail or continue up Shadow Creek to Ediza and Iceberg Lakes.

This is an active bear area so you must use bear canisters to secure your food and refuse.

Common Destinations: Ediza Lake, Iceberg Lake, John Muir Trail, Thousand Island Lake loop.

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

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Road closed in winter (mid-October through late June)
Reservations: Reserve wilderness permits up to 6 months in advance at the Inyo National Forest Wilderness Permit Page
Rentals & Guides: Reds Meadow Pack Train is located near Reds Meadow Resort offering day rides and mule pack trips (800) 292-7758.
Fees: Visitors to the Reds Meadow Valley pay a per-person transportation fee which allows use of the mandatory shuttle bus. Call Mammoth Lakes Welcome Center for more shuttle information. (760)924-5500.
Permit Info:
  • Wilderness permit required year round for overnight trips.
  • Day use does not require a permit.  
  • May 1 through November 1 overnight visitors are limited to 30 people per day. 
Open Season: Road closed in winter.
  • No campfires from Shadow Lake to Ediza and Iceberg Lakes; no campfires at all locations above 10,000 ft.
  • No camping at Shadow Lake, parts of Shadow Creek and the east side of Lake Ediza.
  • Food, trash and scented items must be stored in bear proof containers.
  • Groups cannot be larger than 15 people (includes day use).
  • Not recommended for stock beyond Lake Ediza.
  • Ansel Adams Wilderness regulations.
  • Yosemite wilderness regulations apply if entering the National Park.
Closest Towns:
  •  Mammoth Lakes, CA (full service, hospital)
Water: Water from creeks, lakes and springs should be treated before drinking.
Restroom: Vault toilet at trailhead. Please Leave No Trace. Bury human waste away from water sources.
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center:

General Information


Leave Hwy 395 at Hwy 203 to the town of Mammoth Lakes. Turn right on Minaret Road and go to Mammoth Mountain Adventure Center (Main Lodge) for long term parking and to board the mandatory shuttle to the trailhead. Shuttle stop #1 is Agnew Meadows.


 Backpacker parking is at Mammoth Mountain Main Lodge. 


Lake and Pond Fishing

Shadow Creek Trail has many fishing opportunities, Brook and Rainbow Trout are common in Shadow and Rosalie Lakes, Ediza, Iceberg and Cecile Lakes hold Brook Trout. Check the Eastern Sierra Back Country Fishing Guide  for more information.

River and Stream Fishing

Brook Trout are common in streams in this area. Check the Eastern Sierra Back Country Fishing Guide  for trout species in all the streams.

Day Hiking


Horse Camping

Horse Riding

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


  Elevation : 
8,322 ft. at Agnew Meadow Trailhead - 9,777 ft. at Iceberg Lake