Several possible trailheads are listed below with directions to the peak.
1) Kennedy Meadows Resort
Follow the Huckleberry Trail all the way to Maxwell Lake (14.5 miles)
. This is a great place to camp. Next, continue south on the Huckleberry trail for another 1.5 miles and take the trail split south to Twin Lakes. Upon reaching Upper Twin Lake, take the trail to the west which follows the northern shore of Lower Twin Lake. The trail disappears but follow the outlet stream of the Twin Lakes until the profile of Haystack comes into view to the south. Follow the outlet stream of Peninsula Lake up until you reach Peninsula Lake, which sits under the shadow of Haystack Peak. Hike south on the east side of Peninsula Lake and ascend the small rise to the cirque that holds Upper Peninsula Lake.
2) The Leavitt Lake trailhead
is only accessible with an SUV with high clearance and 4-wheel drive. Leavitt Lake road is located 3.8 miles east of the Sonora Pass off of CA Hwy 108. It's 3 miles to Leavitt Lake over very rough terrain and a couple of stream crossings. Free parking is available on the north side of the lake. Follow the Leavitt Pass trail south, up and over Big Sam, for 10 miles until you reach Emigrant Pass. Take the trail split to the south. Near Grizzly Meadow, take the trail split to the SW that leads through Horse Meadow. You'll reach the Huckleberry trail at the far end of Horse Meadow. Head south for .75 miles and take the trail split to Twin Lakes. Follow the directions above to Peninsula Lake. (21 miles total)
* Call well in advance to reserve horse and guide if you decide to pack in with Kennedy Meadows.
Directly north of Upper Peninsula Lake
there is a meadowy ledge
that rises to the east towards the saddle between Haystack and Schofield Peaks. You'll end up just north of the saddle. It is an easy class II scramble except for one tricky stretch about half way up that may qualify as class III. Once on the saddle, run the ridge for almost a mile towards the NW to the summit. The ridge and summit
are topped with rocky bluffs and patches of white bark pine that require some maneuvering but it is overall a pretty easy hike.
Click here for a topo map
of the route.
There is no special equipment required for this climb during the summer months except for the usual overnight backcountry camping gear.
If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.