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Five Lakes Trail

MODERATE 56 reviews
#4 of 116 trails in

Five Lakes Trail is a 4.7 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Alpine Medows, CA that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from June until November. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

4.7 miles 1108 feet Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

horseback riding

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

muddy

rocky

snow

Nestled in the foothills of the Granite Chief Wilderness peaks just north of Lake Tahoe, the Five Lakes promise dramatic yet tranquil surroundings, a place to relax, fish, or swim. Best visited after the snow has retreated in the summer, the Five Lakes Trail is one of the easiest and most accessible hikes in the Granite Chief Wilderness so you're unlikely to have this trail to yourself. Don't be disheartened if the trail is busy however, as the lakes themselves allow for plenty of chances for quiet and solitude. Great views, beautiful wildflowers, and plenty of room for exploration. It's like a playground but better. Stretching is encouraged since almost all of the elevation gain is accrued during the first mile or so of the hike. Once at the lakes, you can take it easy, swim, eat, and lay out, or you can continue on and hike around the ski resort, or head west or south and hit up the PCT and other trails.


2 days ago

Was a nice hike, camped overnight and plan on doing again.


5 days ago


6 days ago


8 days ago

hiking

A spectacular hike up a granite canyon, rewarded by a lovely chain of five lakes at the top.


9 days ago

Such a beautiful trail!


28 days ago

hiking

The lake at the top of the trail was great, beautiful scenery along the way and a well maintained trail. I would not call this trail "kid friendly." I took my 5 year old because it said "kid friendly." She is accustomed to some hiking, but this is way out of her league - she spent a large part of the hike on shoulders.


1 month ago

hiking

Beautiful hike. 40 minutes away from Reno off I-80W


1 month ago

hiking

Awesome hike through varied terrain. The lakes at the top are definitely worth the journey up! Wonderful shaded spots for a picnic and a swim. The largest of the five lakes is a perfect spot to take a dip. Agree with the earlier posts that the first part of the hike is the steepest. The flat part starts once you enter the woods. Super fun!


1 month ago

hiking

awesome spot! the hike up is moderate, the unfit may find it strenuous though. great place to swim, would definitely come up here again, and even look into backpacking in granite wilderness! hike back is all down hill, very quick! make sure you've got some grippy shoes, the trail is very dusty with little bits of gravel. makes it easy to slip on the way down.

only minus one star because it is quite popular. trail was busy, and we passed at least one tour group. we did manage to find a place to hang out in peace, but there was underwear found in the bushes etc :P the area sees it's share of traffic for sure.


1 month ago

hiking


1 month ago

Great trail, we had a toddler on our back and it was a great hike, not too challenging but not too easy! Lots of flat area at the top for lunch and so that our little one could stretch her legs. Lots of sights to see at the top, could even go swimming! If alone could easily do it in an hour and a half... Great hike!


1 month ago

hiking

Perfect afternoon hike with everything you could want. Forests, meadows, wild flowers, gorgeous scenery and a beautiful lake at the end. We even saw snow. Our dog was thrilled that he could cool off in the lake before heading back down.


1 month ago

hiking

For me this hike was more about the journey than the destination. The views while you're hiking are gorgeous. I actually tripped multiple times because I was looking around instead of at the trail. The lakes were just ok. I could only find two of the lakes and they are very wooded. There was only one place to access them for swimming and it was crowded with people.


1 month ago

hiking

Very very nice hike, worth the climb up! great for dogs and very fun to bring a lunch and eat by the lake!


1 month ago

hiking

Gorgeous views of Alpine Meadows valley, rock formations, and alpine lakes. Kid-friendly. Able to see two of the five lakes with eight and eleven year olds. Will definitely be coming back to explore more of the Granite Chief Wilderness.


1 month ago

hiking

Great! Gorgeous views of the Alpine ski resort. Gorgeous rock formations. Not too difficult but no bikes so it made it easy to maneuver. Pretty steep in some areas but nothing too difficult. At the end there were a couple lakes at the one at the very end the largest one have the best view The day we went to weeks ago it was very very windy and cold.


1 month ago

hiking

Simply beautiful. Make sure you see all five lakes! Suggest you go early. Crowded on the way back - counted 75 cars parked along the road.


1 month ago

Great hike! Good climb and beautiful scenery. Just a bit crowded coming down. A+


1 month ago

hiking


1 month ago

hiking

Great. We took the little connector at the top over to the saddle area near Cornice II in Squaw Valley. Then we took the Western states trail down, and hiked all the way back to our home on the Alpine Meadows side via Juniper Mountain Road. Wonderful trail and experience. Highly recommend AllTrails map if you haven't done this before.
Also today 8-4-16 noted that if you want to take the Squaw Saddle Trail over to the Squaw side, turn right (straight) at the wooden sign 1.80 Miles from the Trailhead (says Whiskey Creek and Pacific Crest), then go exactly .08 Miles further and turn right. Squaw Saddle connector is not marked. we placed 2 "ducks" today, but you should use All Trails to follow the connector to the KT trail or Western States