Saturday, May 20, 2017

Mile High Overlook and Mammoth Pool Reservoir

Dale Matson

Click On Photographs To Enlarge

Mammoth Pool Reservoir

From Fresno, I took Highway 41 north to County Highway 200 to North Fork. From there I took Mammoth Pool Road out of North Fork I believe it is also called Minarets Road or the Scenic Byway Road. Mammoth Pool Reservoir is about 1.5 hours from North Fork. The three forks of the San Joaquin River have already joined by the time it flows into the reservoir.  As you climb the first scenic pullout is where you can view Redinger Lake Reservoir from far above.

Redinger Lake Reservoir

After this there is a long winding climb that takes you through a huge burn area (the French Fire of 2014). Eventually you will come to what is called “Mile High Curve” There is a wide area with a pull out to view Mammoth Pool below and the Ritter Range of the Sierra Nevada about 25 miles as the eagle fly’s. It was a beautiful sight on a clear day with lots of snow remaining in the mountains. Less than a mile further there is a picnic area with a viewing area with a sign that identifies the mountains you are viewing. As you face the mountains there is an interesting cluster of granite domes on your left called, “Eagles Beaks”.

 Mammoth Pool At 97% Capacity

 Banner And Ritter

 Mammoth Mountain Can You See The Gondola House On Top?

 Chiquito Creek
 Eagles Beaks

It is still about 20 miles of descent to Mammoth Pool Reservoir with campgrounds along the route. There is a tall bridge across Chiquito Creek, which is quite full as I write this. There is a resort store near the boat ramp called “Wagner’s”. I was on a search for a missing lady there who went missing for three days. We located her and her dog on the 3rd day and she was weak but did not require hospitalization. There are additional campsites near the lake with the boat ramp being about 3 more miles below the store.

The gate was closed to the boat ramp so my son Ben and I walked down to the lake. Some other access points are closed for fishing and boating till June. Before Memorial Weekend when the store opens, the road and entire area is sparsely traveled.

I used a Sony A7R2 and an adapted Canon 400mm f4 lens with a 1.4X extender for some of the shots. I also used a Batis 85 1.8, Batis 18 2.8, and Voigtlander 15mm 4.5 for Sony e-mount.

A YouTube video of photographs and movie clips on this drive can be found here:

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