Lake Margaret Trail is a 4.6 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Kirkwood, California that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, fishing, horses, and snowshoeing and is accessible from June until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.
Almost unbelievable that there are so many reviews for a little hike that is so remote. My wife and I did this about 10 years ago and never saw another person in midsummer. I left her sleeping on a rock and circled the lake. As I jumped off a large low granite rock into a small clear spot I almost got gored by a pretty big buck. He was laying down sleeping and I startled him and was just inches away from "feeling" him. Great little hike with a few spots to scramble. There really wasn't a trail around the lake at the time but it wasn't hard to navigate around. There were so few people doing the hike at the time we shared our lunch with a family of ducks that had no fear of us with the little ducklings sitting in our lap eating the bread from our sandwiches. A memorable day...
Went with a group of varying hiking levels. Took us 2.5 hrs one way with frequent breaks. There are some river crossings over downed trees as bridges. Beautiful river that comes from Capell Lake runoff. The last part of the hike is a difficult climb up a very large boulder. The lake was pristine. It is up and down with rock, boulders dirt paths and seems to be very well maintained. Take lunch and water.
Great hike, weather was perfect, fellow hikers and backpackers seem to all have smiles on their faces. Peace & LOVE. UPCOUNTRY Hiker.
This was a beautiful trail albeit a little rocky. I would recommend a walking stick if you have weak ankles. Some of the trail as in other reviews is hard to follow so you can easily get off track if not paying attention. For a Sunday it was pretty quiet. I think I only ran into less than 10 other hiking groups and most had dogs. The parking lot was full and I got there around noon. I was able to make a spot and the trail itself wasn't crowded. There are nice rivers/creeks towards the beginning and the lake was beautiful but smaller. I would highly recommend hitching an immediate right when you get to the lake and hike up the rocks. There's a beautiful viewpoint up there and the breeze makes for a nice resting point. It was also quieter up there since most folks stayed real close to the water. This trail is approved by 3 doggies and a human!
Hiked this trail with my dog on a Thursday. The trail was in good condition and the river crossing was very easy. When we got to the lake, there was nobody else there. Since I knew more people wouldbe coming shortly, we headed to the west side of the lake climbing over the granite rocks to get there. We had a nice cove to ourselves for swimming and lunch. I hung up the hammock and relaxed for a while before heading back. This is a beautiful lake and if you can get here on a quiet day, it is wonderful.
If your looking for quite, serene and relaxing- don't come here on the weekends!!
Beautiful per usual however there was an awful influx of incredibly rude people at the lake. People were laying on the trails thus making it hard to pass, walking through people's camps with little to no regard of their tents, packs and personal items. Rafters (yup people brought in rafts) were being inconsiderate on the water to fishermen. There had to be in excess of 100 people in and around the lake which is a huge contrast to the past. I'm all for shared space and enjoying the beauty, relaxing and taking it all in but it's hard to do yourself when there is so much chaos.
Probably better to do this on a day (s) off during the week to really enjoy the beauty and take it all in.
Great hike with the dog. I'd suggest getting there early, as the parking lot fills up pretty fast. It was empty at about 10am and packed when I hiked out at noon or so.
Lot's of other folks had hiking poles which might be necessary at certain points for people to keep their balance. However, overall it was a pretty simple hike with only a few water crossings.
Might be good to take a map as I bumped into a few people who kept getting mildly lost and going off the trail.
Short trail, beautiful flowers, stars were bright at night!
This was a relatively short hike but very nice. There are six of us with 3 tents so it was a little difficult to find one spot big enough. There aren't very many spots on this lake for overnight camping but if you venture off the shoreline a little ways you will find multiple spots. I would not let this deter you because it's very beautiful lake and the hike is pleasant. The water was relatively warm. The parking lot is not very big and if it is a busy weekend, good luck. We had to park on the highway off to the side and walk down to the trailhead
had a great time. we went when the path was covered in snow and got cut off just before the halfway point so decided to revisit this last weekend. super fun lots of terrain change and the last leg before the lake is the kicker.
Had a great first backpacking trip w my kids. Perfect for first timers. Definitely pay attention for trail markers. Warm enough for swimming.
Great hike. Lots of reward. Would be great hike for kids even if you cut it short and didn't make the lake. Our 9 and 12 y/o's had a blast. Kirkwood Inn restaurant was cool way to end day.