Kayaking On Convict Lake Near Mammoth Lakes

Kayaking On Convict Lake in the Sierra Nevada region near Mammoth Lakes is amazing! The reflection of the mountains off the shimmery lake surface sparkle and glimmer as I stare ahead sitting in my kayak.

The still of the air, the silence of nature, and bright morning sunshine creates the perfect day to explore the area around Convict Lake.

Kayaking on Convict Lake
Convict Lake

Road Trip Finale

After spending the previous two days exploring mountains, hiking trails, and hot springs around Mammoth Lakes; we made a change for this final day of our weekend road trip. Kayaking Convict Lake near Mammoth Lakes is no doubt one of the highlights of our weekend road trip.

Mammoth Lakes

The History of Convict Lake

Surrounded by majestic mountains and pristine skies, Convict Lake is more than a place where the fishermen go. The history of Convict Lake is quite interesting as it relates to being a place where bad things happen. It begins back in the late 1800s during the early settlement days; where a group of prisoners escaped from Nevada and made it to this lake, known as Wit-Sa-Nap by the Paiute.

Convict Lake A Murderous Tale

Morrison Mountain

Fishing at Convict Lake Morrison Mountain

Unfortunately their escape didn’t go as smooth as they might thought it would have as they encounter a Deputy Sheriff George Hightower. In this encounter, Posse member; Robert Morrison ends up killed. The beautiful mountains that surround the lake are named after him; Morrison Mountain. There is another strange incident that happened in the early 1990s as well. A group of teenagers and a couple counselors fell into the water while standing on a thin layer of ice. All except one teenager was able to pull himself out; it is assumed the others had drowned.

Kayaking Convict Lake

Convict Lake Today

Although these tragic events have infiltrated the memory of the community in years past, today it has blossomed into something new full of fun and adventure. It is known as a place for recreational opportunities. The opportunity for fishing, hiking, exploring, and kayaking. Convict Lake in the Sierra Nevada area is one of places that will surprise you. It is sort of a hidden gem believe it or not. 

The activities and things to do in this area of Mono County are endless including hundreds of miles of trails for hiking and backpacking. Trek your way through the Inyo and Humboldt Toiyabe National Forests that includes the John Muir trail, Ansel Adams, and Hoover Wilderness. To offer you a few nature and hiking trails to explore, I have listed a few below:

Hiking Trails

  •   Agnew/Meadow Wildflower Nature Trail          Short Trail        Map
  •   Burt Canyon Trail         Distance: 6.5 miles to Anna Lake           Map
  •  Crystal Lake Trail         Distance: 3 miles                                    Map
  •   Duck Pass Trail            Distance: 1 mile or 5 miles                      Map

You can also enjoy the 3 mile hiking trail around Convict Lake of which this trail connects to the Sierra Crest according to Wikipedia.com.

In Summary

I highly recommend you make a stop by Convict Lake on your visit to the Inyo National Forest or Mammoth Lakes area in California. If you are looking for simple easy adventurous things to do this Summer, then go visit Convict Lake and the Mammoth Lakes area. Directions: Convict Lake is approximately two miles from Highway 395 and about 15 minutes south of Mammoth Lakes.

2 Comments on “Kayaking On Convict Lake Near Mammoth Lakes

  1. The name alone begs for research on the naming of the lake. The views are beautiful, and though I have never been kayaking before, I would enjoy venturing out onto the calm waters of this lake to take it all in. I enjoyed reading about your experience!


    • You nailed it, Alecia! The name is curious to me as well, and I browsed the books in the visitor center to read a few brief stories about what happened. Oh,.you would certainly enjoy kayaking or paddle boarding on this calm, serene, and peaceful lake; and mountain views to top it off. Thank you so much for reading!


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