Fall foliage lights up Mono County | RecordCourier.com

Fall foliage lights up Mono County

Staff Reports

Hues of gold and red stand out against the Sierra near Sonora Pass in Mono County.

The landscape is changing colors, the temperature is cooling down, and less foot traffic on popular trails makes fall the perfect time for hiking in Mono County.

Adventurers are invited to celebrate their backcountry excursion in town afterward, with a well-deserved beer from one of the local hotspots.

"We've come up with some fun day hike ideas that allow people to challenge their grit, along with some fun restaurants and breweries to visit so they can promptly reward themselves with some really great beer and food," said Jeff Simpson, Mono County economic development manager.

Throughout the fall season Mono County offers a weekly-updated Fall Color Guide for hikers to have the inside scoop on scenery and hiking conditions. Visit https://www.monocounty.org/things-to-do/fall-colors/ to stay up-to-date on trails with vibrant fall foliage.

Where to Find Outdoor Adventure and Cold Brews

Mammoth Lakes: Crystal Lake Trail is a great option that hikers and their dog will both love. The spectacular three-mile trek climbs 750 feet in elevation, giving way to views of Lake George, Crystal Crag and Crystal Lake. From there, hikers are perfectly positioned to celebrate at several noteworthy breweries:

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Black Doubt Brewing Co. offers an array of brews from Belgian-style to sour beers. Try the Hopduction Hazy IPA after a day on the trail, brewed with Mosaic, Amarillo and Australian Galaxy hops.

Mammoth Brewing Co. serves an epic beer to go with an epic hike; the highly popular Epic IPA is brewed with Horizon Citra and Amarillo hops, this American IPA is sure to hit the spot after the day's adventure.

Shelter Distilling beers rotate regularly but always feature a cider, an IPA and two other varied beers. For a refreshing cocktail after a day's hike, try the Eastside Retreat cocktail, which is gin-based using their Gin the Third, dominated by a bouquet of floral notes backed by a juniper and coriander base. Fresh cucumber, lime and mint round out this well-balanced cocktail.

June Lake: Parker Lake Trail is an ideal option for those looking to cast a line once they've reached their beautiful destination. The hike offers two to three hours of adventure through Aspen trees to high alpine Parker Lake, a gorgeous fishing hole that is easily accessible and close to some delightful local eateries:

June Lake Brewing offers the light and refreshing Buccicat Cream Ale. Brewed with Crystal hops and California Ale yeast this beer delivers a smooth and clean body with subtle, light hoppy flavor. Enjoy your favorite craft beer from their dog-friendly location complete with a nice beer garden and quirky atmosphere.

Tiger Bar & Café has a healthy selection of beers from local Mammoth and June Lake breweries. Of their craft brew selection on-tap the June Lake Brewing Alpers Trout Pale Ale is a light and refreshing brew perfect for rounding out a hike and brings a slightly creamy mouthfeel with strong citrus notes.

Eagle's Landing Restaurant offers a comfortable, sit-down respite from the day's excursion. A wide array of microbrews, bottled and draught beers await, including local favorite Mammoth Brewing Co.'s Golden Trout Kolsch featuring a full-bodied flavor with floral notes from Vienna malts.

Lee Vining: Lundy Canyon trail, while more challenging, brings its visitors a magnificent payoff – views of the vibrant landscape in stunning fall colors, waterfalls and a beaver dam. After conquering some challenging sections, hikers can celebrate and refuel at several local hotspots with scenic outdoor seating:

Epic Café brings hikers a selection of Mammoth Brewing Co. beers including the Epic IPA, Golden Trout Kolsch and Double Nut Brown, as well as favorite brews including Coors, Pabst Blue Ribbon, Guinness, Blue Moon and St. Archer.

Whoa Nellie Deli delights hikers with four beers on draught, one from June Lake Brewing, Lagunitas IPA and two from Mountain Rambler, including the Venusian Blonde Ale brewed with German Magnum hops. The deli also offers the full spectrum of bottled microbrews perfect for packing a picnic before hitting the trail.

The Mono Inn frequently changes beers available on tap, always including two local beers, a cider and an offering from out of state. Currently they offer a local brew from Left Coast Brewing Co. on draught and a highlighted beer from Oregon.

Bridgeport: Robinson Creek Trail brings varied terrain on an eight-mile loop trekking from Twin Lakes to Barney Lake through meadows, switchbacks and along a creek, delivering hikers to sprawling views.

Big Meadow Brewing Co. offers two light, refreshing beers on-tap. The Harlot honey rye blonde ale and the Sweeteater, a raspberry wheat beer. Each brew is light, crisp and offers bright flavors that aren't too sweet or too fruity.

Annett's Mono Village before hitting the trail, stop by Annett's convenience store to pack a cooler with your favorite brews. If you're heading to Annett's after your day's excursion, pick a seat at the bar and take a load-off with their most popular beer order, a bottled corona.

Rhino's Bar & Grille To refuel from a day in the backcountry, Rhino's offers popular beers on-tap including Coors Light, Alaskan Amber, PBR, Lagunitas IPA, Sierra Nevada and Shock Top, in addition to bottled favorites.

For additional information on hiking trails and all area dining options, please visit http://www.monocounty.org/.

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Visit https://www.monocounty.org/things-to-do/fall-colors/ to stay up-to-date on trails with vibrant fall foliage.