Here on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada, timbered, rolling terrain dominates most of Dinkey Lakes Wilderness. Almost all of it sits above 8,000 feet, with Three Sisters Peak soaring 10,619 feet near the 16 lakes clustered in the west-central region. Stands of white fir, red fir, and Jeffrey pine are interspersed with large mountain meadows, especially in the north-central region and along Helms Creek. Rocky outcroppings often break the skyline, and snow blankets much of the area from November until June. John Muir Wilderness lies just to the east and north. Trails are well suited for stock travel, but natural feed is scarce except in the meadows north of First Dinkey Lake and near Nelson Lake. Stock must be camped at least 500 feet from any shoreline. From Courtright Reservoir, the trail up Helms Creek reaches First Dinkey Lake after about 17 miles. Cattle still graze on sections of the area on permits issued prior to designation. Firewood will be very difficult to find near the lakes. Human use is rated as moderate.
Leave No Trace
How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Dinkey Lakes Wilderness.
Digital and paper maps are critical tools for wilderness visitors. Online maps can help you plan and prepare for your visit ahead of time. You can also carry digital maps with you on your GPS unit or other handheld GPS device. Having a paper map with you in the backcountry, as well as solid orienteering skills, however, ensures that you can still route-find in the event that your electronic device fails.
Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is generally prohibited in all wilderness areas.
This includes the use of motor vehicles, motorboats, motorized equipment, bicycles, hang gliders, wagons, carts, portage wheels, and the landing of aircraft including helicopters.