photo of Baboon Lakes, Sabrina Basin, CA

  Baboon Lakes

  John Muir Wilderness

Lower Baboon Lake

Baboon Lakes Backpacking Trip Resources

Books and Maps

Sierra South is the leading backpacking resource for backpacking in the southern Sierra. Reliable maps facilitate trip planning and are invaluable in the back country.


Bishop Pack Outfitters

For an extended stay in the Sabrina Basin, consider having yourself packed into a base camp at Baboon Lakes by local packer Bishop Pack Outfitters. Located a couple miles from the trailhead near North Lake, they can pack your gear into your base camp while you make the trek on foot. Or if you would prefer, you can go on horseback along with the packer.

Wilderness Permits

A Wilderness Permit is required for each party camping overnight in the John Muir Wilderness. Since the Sabrina Basin portion of the John Muir Wilderness is in the Inyo National Forest, obtain your permit from them. There are daily quotas for each trailhead, so obtaining a wilderness permit reservation is recommended.

The hike to Baboon Lakes in the Sabrina Basin is via the Sabrina Lake Trailhead, which allows 25 overnight backpackers per day, 15 of which may be reserved ahead of time. The other 10 are set aside as walk-up permits, available after 11 AM the day before your departure. This is a popular trailhead in the summer and on weekends.

Permits can be reserved from 2 days up to 6 months prior to your departure. The permit reservation costs $5 per person in your party and $10 for a transaction fee. Wilderness permit reservations are now handled by Obtain your permit at their website: - Inyo National Forest Wilderness Permits.
Arrange to pick your permit at one of these locations, no later than 10 AM the day of your departure (or call 1-2 weeks ahead of time to arrange late pickup).

  • Eastern Sierra InterAgency Visitor Center, Hwy. 395, 2 miles south of Lone Pine, CA
  • Mammoth Lakes Visitor Center, 2500 Main St., Mammoth Lakes, CA
  • White Mountain Ranger Station, 798 N. Main St., Bishop, CA
  • Mono Basin Scenic Area Visitor Center, Hwy. 395, North of Lee Vining

You can arrange to pick up your permit after hours.

Backcountry Regulations for the Sabrina Basin

  1. Bear canisters are not required in the Sabrina Basin, but the shortage of trees adequate for hanging your food properly make canisters the only practical way to store food safely.
  2. Campfires are not permitted at Baboon Lakes or anywhere in the Sabrina Basin.