Sword Lake

Sword Lake

us United States

Travel Update: Most places are open. Still, check the official websites and read our crucial BEST TIME tips below to help you AVOID THE CROWDS or secure tickets | Book Tip: 50 U.S. States - 5000 Ideas

When Is the Best Time

When Is the Best Time

Sword Lake is a popular destination for hikers as well as backpackers because it's an easy trip and only a 2.5 miles hike from the County Line Trailhead.


The best time to visit if you plan to go swimming is summer (late June/July/August) and early fall (September). However, expect a crowded area in summer, even more on weekends. Weather details: Monthly Weather - Sonora (nearby)

Avoiding Tourist Crowds

A great time with pleasant weather and less people is September after Labor Day, when the tourist season has died down a little. But still, try to avoid weekends if possible. You can also continue 0.3 miles farther to Lost Lake if Sword Lake is too crowded.


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Where and Tips

Kennedy Meadow
United States

The trailhead is right off the Sonora Pass Highway. Plenty of wildlife to see. Great views of Sonora Pass and the Carson-Iceberg Wilderness.

  • Roundtrip Distance: 7.5 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 1500 feet
  • Permits: A forest service permit is required for overnight camping but for day use a permit is not required.
  • Closest Hotel: Strawberry Inn



Kari, thanks for sharing. Once we passed Sonora Pass but it was end of May and the first day where it was opened. So unfortunately there was still too much snow for hiking. Looks beautiful. Yosemite area one of my favorite National Parks in the world.

Melissa Sallee

That's a comfortable roundtrip distance and the views look lovely. What types of wildlife did you encounter?

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