A good place to start walking in Mineral King  is the Cold Springs Nature Trail. This easy, one-mile interpretive walk describes and displays the natural wonders and the formation of the valley.
A bit more strenuous, the Timber Gap Trail follows an old mining road through a forest of red fir trees. You’ll see pretty views out to Alta Peak and the middle fork of the Kaweah River. The short version of this trail runs four miles round-trip. Note the altitude: You’ll start at over 7,500 feet. For a longer hike, take the fork to Monarch Lakes. This trek runs about 8.5 miles round-trip, but it’s mostly flat and easy walking. Consider bringing a picnic to enjoy beside the lakes.
For hikers in great shape looking for the most tremendous views of the southern Sierra Nevada range, keep on going past the lakes up to the top of Sawtooth Peak. This trail isn’t for the faint of breath or shaky of leg. It climbs 1,200 feet in just over a mile of loose, difficult ground. But once you’re at the top, you’ll get a fine chance to rest as you photograph the majestic peaks all around you.
Many other hikes begin in Mineral King Valley. You can visit a number of charming alpine lakes if you’re up for a hike of 7–11 miles. Plan to take food and water and spend all day on hikes out to Eagle and Mosquito Lakes or Crystal Lake. You can also get to Franklin Lake and back in a day, though the pristine beauty of the water and fascinating geology of the area often draw backpackers on their way to Mount Whitney  over several days.