Lillian Lake Trail is a 11.8 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Oakhurst, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from March until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.
We took the clockwise direction for the Lillian Lake loop. Ended up finding a nice campsite on the north side of the lake. As others have mentioned there is a lot of ups and downs getting to this lake and it is one of the more difficult days that we have done. It took us about 4 hours on the hike in and 3 on the way out (on the Walton trail). The lake was warm enough for a comfortable swim, and there were very few mosquitoes. There were quite a few bees and flies... and they had a wonderful ability of getting between the tent and the rainfly. We did a couple of day hikes, and the scenery is really breathtaking. A good destination for this time of year.
The photo above is of Chittenden Lake, not Lillian lake.
Great, but short hikes
Nice trail. Lots of up and down. More challenging than we thought it would be, but a beautiful little lake and nice camp group. There was a fair amount of traffic because it's one of the first sites from the trailhead. Fishing was not great but I heard that rainbow is much better.
This was my first backpacking trip so it proved difficult for me. However, the views are spectacular from the green marshy trails to the stunning blue lake. I couldn't get enough of this trip.
This is a gorgeous hike. During the loop, there are several lakes to see, beautiful panoramic sights of Sierra mountain tops, meadows, wildlife, etc. The loop can be completed in 2-3 days (I would recommend 3 to see all the area has to offer.) I went in June 2015 and low temp was about 40 high was around 75. I would recommend taking the Fernandez trail head and head clockwise.
The trail can be accessed by car if you're very, very careful. I would recommend a truck or suv if possible.
The only reason why I would not rate this hike 5/5 stars is due to the massive amount of mosquitoes. I have been camping and doing all various out door activities all my life, and I am not one to complain about mosquitoes. The mosquitoes here were so bad, we ended up cutting our trip one day short just out of pure frustration.
I love this general are. I've only done the actual loop one time counter clockwise and it was great! Started from Noris Trailhead and got to Lillian lake the first night where my group stayed for 2 nights. We got hit by a missive thunderstorm that came out of nowhere on the second night, but cleared up by morning. Then we finished the rest of the loop the next day. If you have the chance to climb to the top of any of the three peaks do it!!! It's tough but worth it!!!
My group started at Walton Trailhead and did the loop counterclockwise, which I thought was really fantastic way of going about it. We also made a detour to go see Flat Lake, but never made it to Rainbow Lake as the trail disappeared and the cairns we tried following had been put up by people going cross-country to Lillian Lake. And speaking of small spurs, the largest of the Staniford Lakes was beautiful, and Chittenden Lake was definitely worth going to, but not with packs unless you're going to camp up there.
This was my first backpacking trip ever. I have wanted to do this for many years of my life and now 37 years old, had the opportunity to do it. It was spectacular. This hike was challenging for a first timer, but just made me want to do it more! Beautiful scenery and views. Great hike.