dogs on leash
off road driving
cross country skiing
Very pretty hike. Able to take our dog with us. The trail is a bit overgrown at parts with blackberry vines and, as other review on here have noted, there are a lot of bugs. Also, be advised the hike back is much steeper than the hike in. Regardless, the waterfall at the end is more than worth it. I would recommend this trail to others.
It's not very scenic hike itself until you get to the peak. Strenuous. I didn't do the loop. I took the trail going straight up. Nice trail for downhill running. It took me 2h15min to the peak, return trip was just over an hour. 6.75miles round trip.
This trail was ok as far as views the creek was nice but it was so overgrown we could not go any further so we were unable to see the waterfall. Hike back up to the top was a little strenuous but doable. Thanks to the previous reviews we were able to find it, and another reviewer was 100% correct about the bugs they were HORRIBLE!!!! I sprayed my deep woods off at least 10 times and it was not enough. I had a halo of bugs the whole time
We did an overnight trip to Lyons Lake. I fully agree with the post Martin made. This trail was pretty easy at first but right before the lake it was really treacherous. Also if you are fine with walking on ALOT of rocks...this trail is for you. Be careful it is easy to twist an ankle especially with a 40lb pack. BUT we felt like it was really worth it at the end when we reached the lake. It was super gorgeous and there was wonderful view.
This hike was super steep getting up there, but the view was well worth it. I would recommend hiking poles to alleviate the pain on your knees from coming down. Make sure you wear great hiking socks, otherwise you'll get blisters! But I enjoyed this hike alot. Its a must do!
Graeme P. on Thunder Mountain Summit
Great hike with great views
Graeme P. on Thunder Mountain Loop Trail
Great hike with fantastic views
Long one lane drive to the trail head, but worth it. Hike down to the creek and Otter Creek itself was beautiful. Pretty steep at times. It's the hike back out that's a pain in the butt, literally. All uphill at a steep incline. Definitely a challenge and slow going but doable even for the inexperienced hiker like me. Overall good hike and we didn't see a single soul!
This is a hike that is going to test you physically yes, but mentally as well. I went on a Saturday, didn't start until 3:30pm, so there was a lot of traffic moving against me. I reached the summit at 5:30pm and had it all to myself for about 20 minutes. A few backpackers came up from Gilmore Lake, the lower left lake from Tahoe, to watch the sunset.
Having hiked the PCT in 2014, it brought back fond memories of the Desolation Wilderness and absolutely stunned me with the view of not simply majestic Tahoe, but the oceanic roll of the mountains behind. Simply the best that life has to offer.
All in all starting in the later afternoon was ideal because I had very little direct sun until I reached the pass, false summit. I brought 2.5L and this was perfect, particularly because of the cool afternoon. Pace yourself, it is much easier on the mind to keep your eyes just in front of your step, not staring off to see how far you are from the summit. Enjoy the walk and feel the reward
My father and I completed the entirety of this trail before sunrise en route to Mount Tallac's summit. This trail is a great, scenic option if you don't feel as if you have the stamina, determination, or materials necessary to summit Mount Tallac. However, the notorious views aren't on this trail, but rather on the trail starting after Cathedral Lake.
The incline is not as strenuous, in my opinion, as others have suggested. It's a peaceful 1,000 foot elevation gain with scenic views and occasional meadows- definitely not difficult. The trail quality, however, is not quite up to par. A great quantity of this trail is on loose and/or protruding rocks that are the product of washout from Tallac's melted snow.
The two lakes, while modest in size, are clear and extremely beautiful. They're better defined as washbowls: stagnant, melted water that collect at the base of peaks. They're great for photography, a cooling dip, or a picnic, but respect the Desolation Wilderness campers that take shelter by Cathedral Lake.
Additionally, beware of yellowjackets. Start early, at sunrise, to help alleviate some of the challenging uphill; hiking in the dark limits your visibility, meaning you take the trail one step at a time. This helps mentally due to the fact that you cannot view the incline that you have to undertake. Furthermore, the yellowjackets are only prevalent after sunrise, so go early if you wish to avoid them.
If you're feeling energetic after Cathedral Lake, I encourage you to try summiting Mount Tallac. Even if you fail, you'll always possess the indescribable views that are only seen on the stretch of trails after Cathedral Lake. Have fun, and bring enough water!