Whitmore is a non-commercial hot spring located in the Mammoth Lakes area of the eastern Sierra Mountains and is surrounded by the Inyo National Forest. The hot springs are said to have been formed as a result of volcanic activity more than 760,000 years ago. The area where Whitmore is located is also home to a small community who have enjoyed the healing and other health benefits of the geothermal springs for hundreds of years. The hot soak at Whitmore is one of the best-kept secrets in California which means that it would be unlikely for you to see large crowds when you visit these scenic and beautiful hot springs.
Whitmore Hot Springs Pools
The primary and sole hot pool can comfortably accommodate 4-6 people at any given time. The temperatures are above 100 degrees, even in winter when the surrounding Sierra Nevada Mountains are frigid. Whitmore Hot Springs is ideal if you appreciate hot springs in their natural state that are not modified to be more commercially appealing.
Access and Usage Fees
Whitmore is available to the general public, and there are no fees to enjoy the wondrous place. Visitors are STRONGLY encouraged to keep the area clean in order to ensure that the hot springs continue to be enjoyed by future generations.
Camping is widely available in the vicinity of the hot springs. There are several campsites to choose from, including; McGee Creek RV Park and Campground, Big Springs Campground, Convict Lake Campground and Brown’s Owen River Campground.
McGee Creek Campground is opened between April and October and requires a minimum two-night stay for weekends and a three-night stay for major holidays. You are required to make advanced reservations to secure your camping spot at McGee Creek RV Park and Campground.
Big Springs Campground is a free 26 site campground near US 395. No reservations are required, so it operates on a first come first serve basis. This campsite is available throughout the year contingent on the weather.
Convict Lake Campground is only available between April and October. There is a fee of $27 per night that applies for renting a campsite at this location.
Brown’s Owen Campground includes over 75 sites for tents or RVs and offers amenities such as trailer rentals, hot shower facilities, and a café. Reservations are required for Brown’s Owen Campground.
Seasonal Access Information
While accessible year-round, the pool can be crowded at times, especially on weekends and holidays. If possible, visiting during the week is ideal. Please note that during inclement winter weather the BLM often gates (closes) the access road.
From Mammoth Lakes:
Take Highway 395 south to Benton Crossing. Turn left, then continue for about 3 miles, passing two cattle ranges. After the second cattle range, you will go down a moderate hill, when you get to the bottom turn left onto a small dirt road and follow it for approximately 300 meters until reaching a marked parking area. Whitmore Hot Springs is just over 100 feet up the small hill.
Whitmore Hot Spring Soak Stats:
Season: All (access road may be closed during winter)
GPS: 37.6324331 -118.8123521
Map Quad: n/a
Elevation: 7,100 ft
Restrictions: Road closed during poor winter conditions
Water Clarity: Moderate
Area Features: Lil’ Hot Creek, Shepherd Hot Spring, Pulky’s Pool, Crab Cooker, Hot Tub, Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
Closest Food/Gas: Benton Crossing, Crowley Lake
Camping: No onsite camping allowed
Clothing Optional: Yes
Pit Toilet: None