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In the Inyo National Forest, one trail is quietly becoming a great training run for trail runners in the greater Bishop Area. Known as the Grass Lake Loop, this 5k running route is the ideal loop for training, or just a relaxing jaunt into the gorgeous John Muir Wilderness. Full of water, forests and the occasional sweeping vista, the run goes straight through gorgeous terrain and leads to some of the nation’s most pristine scenery. Once you are out at Grass Lake, you can stop and enjoy the glacial fed waters, continue further on the area trails, or return back to the car to complete the journey.

What Makes It Great

Starting out, the run to Grass Lake looks like any other adventure in the wilderness around Bishop. In the distance, tall mountains loom, sending torrents of water down creeks, cascades, and lakes, while scenic views and picturesque forests await your steady stride. With each step, you gain a little bit of elevation, sometimes steep enough to force a quick walking pace instead of a run. The run to Grass Lake is the fantastic example of accessibility in the wilderness, as this well-maintained trail will get you in shape—both physically and mentally.

The 3.1-mile loop run starts at the northwest side of North Lake, near the pack station. Running from here to the actual trail is less than half a mile, making for a good warmup before you start the hills of the trail. After a mile on the trail, you will hit a creek, which is the first real obstacle of this loop. Work your way over fallen logs to get across the creek, but be careful—the logs may be slick after wetter weather. Once you get past the logs and creek, Grass Lake will come into view.

To complete the loop, stay on the north side of the lake, working your way along the shore until you come across another trail, heading north (back in the direction you came from). The trail is usually pretty obvious, but if you are uncomfortable in finding the second part of the trail, you can do the run to Grass Lake as an out-and-back along the main trail.

Who is Going to Love It

The run is for just about anyone who enjoys trail running, but is ideal as a way to dust off the cobwebs or to restart your trail running regimen. More advanced trail runners can use it as an extended loop run, either exploring further up the trails, or returning to the car as an aid station between loops. The trail is not too steep, but will still work your legs enough to give you a little burn while allowing extended moments of recovery. As a dog-friendly trail, this is also a good way to work out both you and your pooch in gorgeous scenery.

Directions, Parking, & Regulations

Head west out of Bishop on Highway 168, head toward Lake Sabrina and North Lake campground to the John Muir Wilderness. Parking for the Grass Lake and Lamarck Lake trails is found on far end of lake, near the pack horse area.

Featured image provided by Dustin Blakey

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4 days ago

❤️Today, we wish you warmth and love wherever you are! ❤️
(Oh, and thoughts of fun and relaxation in the Eastern Sierra!!)
Great photo @sawna
#visitbishop #bishopBIGbackyard
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❤️Today, we wish you warmth and love wherever you are! ❤️
(Oh, and thoughts of fun and relaxation in the Eastern Sierra!!)
Great photo @sawna 
#visitbishop #bishopBIGbackyard

Comment on Facebook

There is no way its that warm yet in Bishop. I Live in Sonoma County and its too cold here for a sleeveless shirt or shorts.

Beautiful, so beautiful 😊😊❤❤

How gorgeous!

I love Bishop been going there ever since I was 10 years old now 61

Oh how I miss this Chris Schock

Minerets. Ice burg lake.

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5 days ago

Are we missing anything?? 😉 ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

...and just yesterday I came across a box of old Bishop Mule Day pins that had belonged to my Grandmother Ina Piper. Some from the early 50s. I Love Bishop.

Mahogany smoked meats for some jerky!! 🤤

That’s a big Amen! All of the above! Except someone would be out of their mind to jump into a lake.

Don't forget the Bakery !!!! We took home so much ,,,it was wonderful .

Laws Museum. Pull off on any side road in the Valley and walk. Look at the mountains. Breathe. Listen to the quiet.

Lunch & a Margarita @ LaCocina in Bishop !! & dont forget a stop @ Rossis in Big Pine on way up 395 or on your way home !! Stop you wont want to miss but check their days & hours open as they vary !! Mikes getting independent in his young age !! Did i say young ? meant well preserved !! Al the Sierras are a fun stop ENJOY your stay !!!

Visit the Bakery, hike to Blue Lake, and eat some delicious soup at the bowling alley before you play a bowl a game or two.

Get a chocolate dipped cone at the frosty chalet in big pine!

Awwwwww! Just replace the noun with any other small California city!

Visit Laws Railroad Museum & Historical Site! Bonus, on Wednesdays and Thursdays volunteers in the mining display put on a great show.

The entire trip was breath-taking and beautiful! We loved the snow, and I can't wait to experience the other seasons in this gorgeous place! My brother Adrian's spirit was guiding us throughout the entire trip! 💜💛➕

Mahogany’s meats!!! The jerky ! Omg soooo good!

On our way in June : Fish for the lunker in Concuct Camp out at Silver Lake Hike up Yost Creek Check out the Mighty Bristlecone😎👍

Maybe missing, while visiting the Eastern Sierra, please dispose of all your litter responsibly.

Have a beer in Rusty’s saloon and a burger at the barn.

Be a great human and pick up someone’s trash while fishing the Owens River

God willing We will be fishing in Rock creek this July

Visit my brother who works for the Forest Service. One of those great guys who tries to keep everything up and running for the masses 😍

In other words, kinda like I do several times every year.

My kids and I always cleaned up when we went fishing there. People have no respect and leave their trash without thinking about if.

Stay at Parchers Resort and fish at South Lake. 🌲🎣

Hike, of course!

Can you do all this stuff right now in February?

Stand along Owens River at sunset

That is one heck of a list!

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6 days ago

River therapy 😍
Video thanks to @wil.daniels
#visitbishop #bishopBIGbackyard
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Comment on Facebook

I could sit and fish right there ALL DAY!!

I Love 💕 to go back one of these days. It is Awesome there.

I just visited last weekend, and it was this beautiful! I want to go back hopefully soon! ➕💛💜

Life goals is to one day go fishing with you in my beloved Bishop, CA ! Stephen Bishop

Love being in bishop and in the eastern Sierras. Fishing and backcountry is pretty awesome. Jacks is good too.

Best time of year to fish for those beautiful wild browns. Blue wing Olive's can come off early afternoon and it is a blast. Love this river!!!

beautiful! I really like going there because its so beautiful!

Love the breeze blowing through he grass.

I need to get there . Hopefully sometime in April

Love this, I could sit here all day!

Cheryl Kimsey Killian that looks so Awesome and Relaxing. I would Love 💕 to be there.

I've spent a lot of time in Bishop.... On Horseback and skis.

Beautiful place

Beautiful picture 😊😊❤❤

So beautiful

I can stare at this all day!

Looks so peaceful!

Owens river... we are from Bishop ...

Gorgeous view


Nice fishing spot!

Miss this !!

Thanks for posting this


Is that the Owens River

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1 week ago

Fishing around here sure is magical ✨
Thanks for the shot, @miss.outside
#visitbishop #bishopBIGbackyard
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Fishing around here sure is magical ✨
Thanks for the shot, @miss.outside
#visitbishop #bishopBIGbackyard

Comment on Facebook

Hey, there I was, 40 yrs. ago! Well,almost like me, uh,I had a fishing pole and a dog😗🤣😂🤣🤣

Hey....I haven't seen this girl on the river? Must of been at the wrong place! Lol

Beautiful picture 😊😊❤❤

Jerry Machue can’t wait to get back up to Bishop! ♥️


Love this picture! She has the magic wand.

The best girls fish!


Alexandra Coyote-Phoenix

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