4 Perfect Vistas for Landscape Photography

…WITHIN 10 MINUTES OF MAMMOTH LAKES

There are plenty of beautiful vistas found on US 395 where you can hang out of your window and shoot photos, but you are more likely to capture something truly unique if you have to get off of the highway and explore. Here are a few options close to Mammoth Lakes, where you can add to your landscape portfolio and get some exercise in the process.

Crowley Lake Area

While most people think of Crowley Lake as a fishing destination, the surrounding area offers stunning views of the Eastern Sierra (and has great open space to hike with your dog). A great way to access the area is by heading east on Benton Crossing Road from the 395 (at the Green Church), which will lead you to dirt roads, open space, and the Whitmore Tubs hot springs. If you’re shooting a scene of the lake itself, keep an eye out for clouds over the lake that the sun dips below as it sets. The brief moment of the atmosphere on fire is one to remember.

Convict Lake

Simply stated, Convict Lake is surrounded by some of the most gorgeous and interesting mountain geology on the East Side. With Mt. Morrison to the south and Laurel Mountain to the east, there are plenty of scenic options for a photographer willing to hike a short way out of the parking lot and around this icy lake. Be sure to check out the Convict Lake Resort on your way out for a high-quality, gourmet meal.

Sherwin Range Area

The Sherwin Range offers some easy access front country skiing, and also has some pretty great views of the town and mountain-scapes to the east. The easiest way to gain access in the winter is to drive south on Old Mammoth Road past Vons and the Mammoth Creek Inn, turn onto Sherwin Creek Road and park at the industrial sized propane tanks on the right. Venture along Sherwin Creek Road or Mammoth Creek Road on foot, snow shoe, or skis from there. Definitely look to visit this area during the full moon cycle.

Minaret Vista

While the Minaret Vista is a highly popular spot for visitors during the summer months, there are no crowds there during the winter months when the access road is covered in snow. To get there in the winter expect to hike, ski, or snowmobile from the Main Lodge along the Minaret Vista Trail. The mountain ridge lines to the west are breathtaking and worth the effort to get out there.

Find some great photo ops during your trip? Share your pics on social media with the hashtag #VisitMammoth. 

John Vallejo

John Vallejo is a photographer addicted to climbing and skiing, and living the dream based in the East Side of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. His interest in photography grows as a natural extension to his experience as an adventure athlete, and as a creative outlet to his other life in the office.

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