From Mammoth Lakes

From the town of Mammoth Lakes, take Highway 395 south. It's about 2 miles to the School Road exit. You'll need to be in the left lane before you see the sign for School Road / Hot Creek Hatchery. Go east on School Road. Turn right on Hot Creek Hatchery road and proceed past the Hot Creek Hatchery and the Hot Creek Ranch. The paved road becomes a dirt road and heads up a slight incline. Public parking and trail access to Hot Creek are available in a couple of spots off Hot Creek Hatchery Road.


Hot Creek - Geology

The earth is very much alive here. If you come only to fish the stretch upstream of the hot springs, then you aren't getting to know the entire Hot Creek.

Hot springs are in this section of Hot Creek

Just 3 miles below Hot Creek's streambed runs a chamber of hot magma. Besides geologists knowing this, it's fairly evident if you venture downstream. The first clue will be the steam rising and the boilding water bubbling up from the creek bed. The water from the creek percolates deep into the ground and enters a complex plumbing system.

Sun sets onHot Creek as anglers look for water

The steam results from that water after its heated and pressurized. A small earthquake can cause sudden geyer eruptions on the creek. An within a day, new hot springs can form at Hot Creek.

The springs and geysers in the stream bed and along its banks change location, temperature, and flow rates frequently and unpredictably. It's anybody's guess, but the stretch of water you fish today might become the home to newly formed hot springs sometime in the future.

Hot Creek flows east towards the Owens River

Important tip - if the water starts to boil where you're fishing - move far upstream.