2 - 3
FATMAP difficulty grade
"A hike of Little Lakes Valley via Mosquito Flat makes for a quintessential Eastern Sierra outdoor experience,” writes Drew Robinson [on TrailToPeak.com](https://trailtopeak.com/2018/11/13/hiking-little-lakes-valley-trail-gem-lakes-via-mosquito-flat-bishop-ca/).
This out-and-back hike passes a plethora of alpine lakes with numerous options for additional side hikes to even _more_ lakes.
The trail runs up the bottom of a glacier-carved valley and is ringed on all sides by gorgeous mountain peaks.
Most notably, Mount Morgan towers overhead at 13,760 feet, Mount Starr at 12,835 feet, and the 13,730-foot Bear Creek Spire sits at the far end of the valley. At 7 miles long, this hike may seem lengthy to the uninitiated, but with a mere 1,200 feet of elevation gain, it’s actually very achievable for less fit hikers.
And since the route is an out-and-back, you can always choose when you turn around.
If you’ve only hiked two miles in and you’re ready to turn around, that’s totally fine, because you’ll already have enjoyed some truly incredible views! The route as mapped here turns around at the top of the low Morgan Pass, but you can choose to continue over the top of the pass to tack on more miles… and reach even more lakes. The trail tread itself consists “mostly [of singletrack] with rocky patches and gradual elevation gain,” according to Robinson. Sources: https://trailtopeak.com/2018/11/13/hiking-little-lakes-valley-trail-gem-lakes-via-mosquito-flat-bishop-ca/ https://www.visitcalifornia.com/attraction/little-lakes-valley-trail