How to hike to Black Point Fissures

FissuresThe Fissures at Black Point, next to Mono Lake, are interesting formations that are worthy of the shortish hike.  But as you’ve read, it’s hard to find the fissures because there’s no trail.  So, here are come clues to finding the Black Point Fissures at Mono Lake.

  1.  The fissures do not face the lake, they face west, towards highway 395.
  2. You’ll be tempted to start from the trail head by ambling south along the hill.  Only do that if you want a longer hike. Suck it up an head straight up the hill at only a SLIGHT angle, as shown on the map, a clockwise route.
  3. If you hike too far south, you will stumble on what I call “faux fissures” like I did.  Not worth the side trip.  I deleted that side trip from my GPS route you see.
  4. The route that takes you south of Black Point peak is easier because it’s a bit more gradual and the terrain is a bit more open, meaning, fewer picker bushes.
  5. You do not have to scale Black Point peak to get to the fissures, I recommend skirting to the left or right, unless you really want to see the 360 degree view.  You’ll see the same view by taking my route.
  6. The route north of the point is the way I took back to the trailhead.
  7. A good GPS setting for finding the Black Point Fissures is: 38 01 36 N, 119 05 53 W.  I’m surprised that I couldn’t find this anywhere.  Set your GPS and just go for that point; you can’t go wrong.  I think you can just go straight to that point, and not so far south as I did.
  8. I’m not recommending the route I took, ONLY the GPS setting.  If you give yourself time, you’ll easily spend an hour or three exploring a wider range of fissures than is shown on this map.
  9. In the summer, it can get hot here.  IMO, start early in the morning.  Good luck!

Fisherman’s trail to/from Glen Aulin


This is an alternative route to Glen Aulin In Tuolumne Meadows.  Route and elevation.  I parked near the Pothole Dome lot, under some trees.  You can park a couple of hundred feet west of the lot for the actual trailhead.  Recommend taking the route on the left which misses a short, steep section with slippery granite.  This route is approx 4 – 4.2 miles to Glen Aulin with either fork.  Mostly downhill going to Glen Aulin.  Total elevation gain is approx 1,000 ft.  The trail is fairly easy to follow though not ducked well, so just watch for evidence of the trail when you emerge from one of the large granite slabs you’ll encounter, especially near the river.  As long as you have a reasonable sense of direction, you’ll do fine.  If you don’t know East from West, take the main trail.  Here are some shots of the hike, with annotations.