Sharing a boarder with the Yosemite Wilderness along the Sierra crest, the Hoover is widely known for its extreme mountain terrain. The wilderness was first established as a "primitive area" in 1931 and was then protected as wilderness in the 1964 Wilderness Act.
The Hoover has relatively little timber throughout much of its steep terrain. Its forests are composed of scattered groves of hemlock, pine, aspen, and cottonwood. Diverse wildflowers spread over the intermittent meadows found here and black bears are common.
The Hoover is easily accessible from its southern end (along Highway 120 near Yosemite's Tioga Pass entrance station), as well as from various points along its eastern edge near Highway 395. Many hikers pass through this wilderness entering or exiting the Yosemite Wilderness. See the sidebar for public transportation options.
A wilderness permit is required for all overnight trips into the Hoover Wilderness (and proposed additions). (Why?) Trail quotas are in effect from the last Friday in June through September 15.
Permits are issued by the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest and Inyo National Forest; the Inyo manages the southern tip accessible from Tioga Pass along Hwy 120, while the majority of the wilderness is managed by the Humbolt-Toiyabe.
Humbodlt-Toiyabe National Forest
If you plan to enter the wilderness through the Humboldt-Toiyabe, permits are available at the Bridgeport Ranger Station or by mail from March 1 through three weeks prior to the first day of you trip. The rest of the year permits are issued by self-registration at the Bridgeport ranger station - see sidebar for additional Forest Service website links.
Inyo National Forest
For entering on the Inyo, permits are available at all Inyo ranger stations, including the InterAgency Visitor Center in Lone Pine.
MAXIMUM GROUP SIZE
No more than 15 people and 25 head of stock are allowed on overnight trips. (Why)?
All food should be stored properly so that it cannot be obtained by bears. Use the bear section on this site to learn more.
Campfires of any kind are not allowed in the following areas of the Hoover wilderness:
- Above 9,000 feet within the Virginia and Green Creek drainages
- Within 1/4 mile of Barney and Peeler Lakes
- In the 20 Lakes Basin (accessed from the Saddlebag trailhead)
- In the Sawtooth Ridge Area.
In places where fires are allowed, make sure to always follow [smart campfire guidelines][campfire].
Dogs must be controlled at all times.
- Whenever possible, camp more than 100 feet away from any lakeshore, stream and trail
- No camping wtihin 1/4 miles of Barney Lake for more than one consecutive night.
- No camping within 100 feet of Barney Lake.
- No camping at Red Lake, Blue Lake or Virginia Lake.
The Sawtooth Zone
- No campfires are allowed
- Maximum group size is 8 persons
- No camping within 100 yards of established routes
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