We took this trip in late September. We started at the Cliff Lake trailhead by Courtright Reservoir.
Above is a map of the area with the trail we took for this trip. CalTopo is a great resource for researching trips and they have a free version that has a lot of tools.
Cliff Lake Trailhead
There are a couple areas on the trail that have a corduroys over the trail in swampy areas. This year and this late in the season it really dry, but in the wet years these are great and save the native area.
In a little under a mile and half in on the trail you enter the Dinkey Lakes Wilderness.
In 2020 during the beginning of Creek Fire the Bullfrog Fire popped up in the Dinkey Lakes Wilderness. The trail to Cliff Lake takes you through part of the fire. It was eerie walking through the burned area and there was no new growth yet in the area. I'm hoping for a great winter new growth next year.
Once you climb up the switchbacks and get to this sign you are really close to the lake.
Even with the KNP Complex Fire going on south of us Cliff Lake was beautiful. We were able to find a good spot to camp and set up our tents and had lunch. We were not able to have a fire due to the the recent fire ban in the Sierra National Forest due to the extreme fire conditions.
After Lunch we decided to hike to Dogtooth Peak which was not too far away. On the way there we came across a these rocks with beautiful quarts in them.
Dogtooth starts to come into view!
Then it opened up and Dogtooth came into full view. We are looking north at the south side of the mountain.
Above is the view of Dogtooth I took a few years ago from the top of Maxon Dome. You can see from this picture why it was named Dogtooth.
As we got closer it was neat to see the formation of the rocks that make up Dogtooth.
Made to Dogtooth! Not the top but between the teeth! Maybe next time I will scramble to the top!
This was teh view between the teeth. You can see Bullfrog Lake at the base of Dogtooth and Eagle Peak in the distance.
After making it to Dogtooth we made our way back to camp to enjoy Cliff lake and the beauty of the Dinkey Lakes Wilderness.
The smoke from the wildfires made the sunset unique.
I know this picture does not do it justice, but the night sky in the mountains is just spectacular. I could spend hours staring into the stars looking for satellites and shooting stars.
The next morning I got up early and climbed up on the hill to the south of the Cliff Lakes and came upon this view of Dogtooth.
The wildfires made this morning feel post apocalyptic. You can see Courtright Reservoir on the right side of photo.
Morning on Cliff Lake.
Great time at Cliff Lake. Can't wait to go back and spend more time in this area and explore.