Explore 2016 - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

2016 Map
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I was curious to see the smoky air from a higher vantage point . went hiking with a mask on because of the smoke from all the CA fires. the air quality was very unhealthy. It looks like an alien landscape from the drought. The ground is cracked up like a giants puzzle. everything is dried out, looking like The aftermath of an apocalypse.
Needless to say I was the only one hiking out there today.

The road to the trailhead for this hike is closed this time of year, so park when you get to the locked gate and then either walk on the road or take a loop trail around Wright’s Lake to find the start of the trail. It’s really beautiful this time of year, and not very busy. The trail is hard to follow at times, but you can keep your bearings by the prominent peaks and rock formations, plus the cairns, as you hike. Highly recommend!

What a hidden gem! This hike was a gorgeous trek through Desolation Wilderness across huge slabs of sparkling granite. At this time of year, the lakes were frozen, but so clear you could see through to the bottom. The views were spectacular even though it was a bit smoky due to a wildfire elsewhere in California. The trail can be difficult to keep track of, especially in the open granite areas. Keep an eye out for cairns to mark the way. While it wasn’t too strenuous, there was some loose talus and shale, making me wish I had my trekking poles on the way down. It is clear that this area is popular in the peak season, so we were happy to have the trail almost entirely to ourselves!

wow robert york sounds like a real dbag.

Steep and slippery in places, worth it for the views!

Very enjoyable journey. Saw only one couple on the way out from 3d Gate the whole way. The Maine Bar Trail is quite steep and poorly maintained, but that short struggle is the only downside, unless you do the loop counterclockwise and have to go up it. Took the Dead Truck Trail on the way back, which added a bit of a workout before it levels off. Creeks were very pretty, even with low flows. Lots of shade, so would make a nice summertime hike, with stops along the Middle Fork.

this was an easy well maintained trail. Enjoyed lunch while cooling off in one of the many fresh water holes

Beautiful trail that I enjoyed very much in the fall (early Nov) but imagine would be really hot in summer. Tree cover for the first bit but mostly wide open fire road with no cover. Gorgeous views all the way up. Took less than 2 hours to get to the top. Free parking at the trail head.

nice views but badly marked
be sure you know where you go

Excellent hike! More exposure to direct sunshine than I expected on the way up which made for poor visibility. Be sure to have a brimmed hat, sunglasses etc. if you’re climbing on a sunny morning.

Absolutely beautiful hike! I will definitely be back in early spring to see the creek in action as well as the waterfalls and wildflowers.

This trail has it all - wonderful views, awesome gnarly trees, manzanitas, rocky creek bed, and beautiful Mount Diablo. I would classify this as an arduous ascent up the mountain for the first half although, to be fair I haven't hiked in a while so maybe it felt more intense for me then for those who hike regularly.

Great hiking particularly in early spring and fall.

Typed ‘Thunder Mountain Trailhead’ on google maps and it led the way. Pay attention about 300 yards up, it’s a quick turn out. You’ll know you got it when you see the large trail head sign with map at the back of the parking area. This is a well marked trail that we took our little dog on. Carried him over the sharper rocks but it was a nice hike. Got the heat rate up at times and you really experience a wide range of conditions and terrain.

A great trail! lots of variations in the terrain. the views were amazing and was perfect with some up hill and down hills. will do this one again maybe running it. 6.7 mile loop.

hiking
19 days ago

This a great day-hike. The trail itself is not hard; just make sure you are wearing nice hiking shoes because of the loose rocks. This is a great time of the year to do it because of the changing colors of the trees. Lyons Lake is a must!

hiking
20 days ago

This hike is great for cardio and legs,,, up hill and down , I’m really slow took 5 hours for 6 miles !! Dog friendly and my 13 year old enjoyed it .

nice moderate hike even though it says no dogs the dogs were everywhere very slippery near falls from mist nice hike

Definitely a moderate to hard hike. Saw a lot of bear droppings some fresher than others so I would definitely recommend not doing this hike on your own. Phone gps map helped to stay on the correct trail. The posted signs can be a little confusing. Overall, beautiful and worth while. Great workout.

hiking
20 days ago

Nice trail, steep incline in the beginning but if you’ve been hiking for a while, it wasn’t too bad. Lots of trail runners, watch out, if you get in their way, they get a little grouchy! More moderate than hard.

Just did this hike today and was nice little hike. Only about 5 miles. Falls was beautiful. No people and free parking. Dirt road driving is rough so take proper vehicle.

We parked on willow creek road and hiked up Pomo canyon and back which was awesome. We hiked up through the redwoods, through the golden valley to enjoy vistas of the ocean as we neared Shell Beach. We stopped off at the rock overlook and enjoyed some snacks before heading back the way we came. Next time we’ll check out Red Hill; it was getting close to sunset so we stayed on what we knew to ensure we hiked out with plenty of light.

Easy trail to hike. A perfect next door get away 10 min from home. Walked at leisurely pace and completed under 3.5 hours. The dogs loved every minute of it!

very hard hike but the feeling of accomplishment I had when I completed it!!! woohoo

hiking
25 days ago

This hike was awesome and kicked my butt! a few things i need to address though. although dogs are allowed...the descent is SUPER steep, often times going over boulders and i was lucky my dog's stay command is on point because if i wasnt supervising where her footing was she could have really gotten hurt. also USE THIS APP ON THE TRAIL IF YOU CAN. several times i got lost and had to use it to go back. One time I realized i was lost and saw fresh large animal prints that freaked me out as it had recently rained and i hadn't seen or heard another hiker the whole day. Finding the trail to get down was difficult, it starts out all bolders and there's another trail next to it that makes it confusing.TRUST THE MAP. The plateau is a perfect place to have lunch before heading down.

hiking
27 days ago

Decent hike. Not really worth the $10 parking fee. Most of the hike is in the shade. Lots of people

I love this trail which is quite shaded if you take the left side of the loop starting at Twin Ponds.

Great hike. Steep, but shady too!

hiking
1 month ago

Really enjoyed this hike today - even though it was pretty warm! It begins in the madrone forest so stays cool. And then it just goes up. I turned around at mile 5 but would say from mike 3-4.5 was the most interesting! Views and geology are amazing. Wish I’d brought my binoculars as there were many birds in the morning.
Also note that app says the trail
Is 6 miles to the end but the trail markers and map say it’s 8 miles.

First 4 miles uphill, the rest is downhill, except for short push up the Castle point. Great for hiking, trail running, mountain biking, rock climbing, bouldering, it’s a great hike with great views! December 13, 2018, no snow on trail, some water in the streams.

Hiked this in September. We turned around shortly after the 4 mile marker because of the time . A good portion of the hike is wooded so a lot of shade . It opens up to a meadow area and the trail has a continuous incline in elevation. The views of the valley are awesome and although we were there on a Saturday morning, there was very little traffic on the trail. A few runners and a handful of other fellow hikers . Great trail!

A very strenuous hike to the actual Euchre Bar and back out of the canyon. Absolute solitude with a gorgeous suspension bridge over the North Fork American, occasional views of the undammed river canyon (and Generation Gap whitewater run). Bring lots of water, sunscreen and a good meal.

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