Eastern Sierra attractionsThe Sierra Nevada mountain range is the highest in the USA and Canada outside of Alaska. The road to visit this area is Highway 395.
Attractions along 395 include
- Bodie ghost town
- Mono Lake
- Devils Postpile
- Mammoth Lakes
- Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest (with the oldest trees in North America
- Laws Museum in Bishop
- Eastern California Museum in Independence
- Keough's Hot Springs in Bishop
- Alabama Hills
- Manzanar concentration camp
- Mt Whitney Fish Hatchery 1 Golden Trout Circle, Independence, Ca. 93526.
- Eureka Sand Dunes
- Coso petroglyphs (The Maturango museum in Ridgecrest organizes tours or contact the China Lake Public Affairs office 760-939-1683 for free visits but you must be a US citizen because this area is on a military base, it takes the whole day and requires a military escort - click here for details)
- Some of highest mountains in the continent: Mt Whitney, Mt Williamson, White Mountain, the Palisades, etc.
- Lake Tahoe
- The Union Pacific Tunnels at Donner Summit (1870)
Hiking the Eastern Sierra
Sierra Nevada peaks For details on the hikes, see Hiking in California Pictures Links:
Recommended restaurants (2012)
- Nicely's in Lee Vining (in town, but closes early evening)
- Jenny's Cafe in Independence (one block north of the Courthouse, pricey but big portions and tasty)
- Village Cafe in Bishop for breakfast
- La Casita in Bishop for Mexican food
- Imperial Gourmet in Bishop for Chinese food
- Upper Crust Pizza in Bishop for pizza and wi-fi
- The Bakkery in Bishop is wildly popular for bread and dessert
- After the High Sierra Cafe closed in Lone Pine, i can't really recommend any restaurant there: they tend to be overpriced.`
- North of Lee Vining on the left-hand side is a campground (Mono Vista RV Park) that has showers for $2.50
- The store/cafe at Whitney Portal (the Mt Whitney trailhead) has showers for $3
- The Whitney Portal Hostel in Lone Pine has showers for $5 that include towel and soap
- The laundromat in Bishop on Warren St (one block from the library) has showers for $5 but only at odd hours
- The Bishop Creek Lodge on the South Lake road has (expensive and brief) showers for $7
- The gas station and motel in Big Pine at the corner with Glacier Lodge Rd
- Most libraries have wi-fi, except Bishop's library that has the old-fashioned terminals (on the other hand Independence's library does not have a power outlet for your laptop).
- Bishop is a good place for gasoline, especially the casino north of town
- The gas station just north of Independence is even cheaper
- One place to avoid is Lee Vining: most expensive gasoline in the region
- There are many campgrounds in the Eastern Sierra. Most tourists tend to get stuck in the widely advertised campgrounds near the towns but the best, quietest and cheapest campgrounds are to be found along the roads that go west from highway 395. Visitor centers and ranger stations have brochures with the full list. I don't list my favorites because i don't really want hundreds of people to congest them! It is also legal to pitch a tent at many trailheads, but there might be no toilet, water fountain, etc.