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

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Worth the view! but definitely tough. This was 8.2 miles total and pretty steep for most of it. Going back down is easy but I would say this is more hard then Moderate.

hiking
16 hours ago

Great hike with a solid amount of elevation gain. The hike is 8 miles round trip with 2800 feet of elevation gain. You start winding your way through beautiful forest and emerge to views of Sierra at Tahoe (a local ski resort). After crawling up a steep section the trees begin to thin and eventually you emerge to unbelievable views. You can see more lakes and mountains than you will know what to do with. Have fun and be safe. This is a nice trail all the way to the top, not too rocky and lots of good footing.

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!

Great hike! Wear good shoes or boots and enjoy the views. I was glad I wore boots. The trail is rocky as everyone says but is a gradual ascent and not too steep. Our moving time was just over 4.5 hours total, going at a steady, moderate pace. We spent about 45 minutes on top and took many photos along the way. So far, this is my favorite Tahoe hike because of the near constant spectacular views!

hiking
2 days ago

Amazing! I only give it 4 stars because of lack of trail markers! Pay attention and it is so worth it! This has been on my bucket list and very rewarding! Not as hard as I imagined ! Take nuts for the over friendly chipmunks at the top:)

hiking
5 days ago

The rockiest trail ever!!! Amazing views, friendly hikers and so many rocks. Made soup at the top and took in the views!! Take plenty of water and or filter. A few lakes you can filter water from up there. Also take some snacks and trekking poles. Steep incline that’s hard on the knees after ascending/descending. Saw a chipmunk.

One of the most amazing hikes I have done this season and with the most spectacular views too. I highly recommend this hike if your up in the Lake Tahoe area.

Great hike. Make sure to get out early because it gets busy.

hiking
6 days ago

Great trail, however this is 4.1 miles each way (value from iWatch plus two trail guides) not the 6.5 stated here!

on Ralston Peak Trail

hiking
7 days ago

Beautiful hike this time of the year. The weather was great and helped with the steady climb to the top. Enjoyed it a lot ! Short and moderate hike.

on Mount Tallac Trail

hiking
9 days ago

Absolutely beautiful trail. Yes, there were a lot of loose rocks covering a majority of the trail, but I didn’t think this trail was as hard as some people have described it. Definitely would do it again!

hiking
13 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
14 days ago

As others have said, it's a pretty rocky trail. I used my trail running shoes and had no issues. It was warmer than I'd thought it would be, and I could have probably packed more water (there are no places to fill your bottles on the trail). I was glad I didn't bring my dog, though we did see several on the trail, and they all looked very happy. We started at 9:15, got to the summit by 12:45 or so (had a few water breaks in between, and ate for a bit at the op), and got back down by 3. I'd say the actual hiking took us 5 hours, with about an hours worth of stops along the way and at the summit. We saw dozens of other hikers on the trail, but did go for some stretches without seeing or hearing anyone.

hiking
14 days ago

Amazing views from start to finish. Highly trafficked. Very glad I did it, but honestly, I don’t need to do it again. The rocks and steps became quite the mental challenge along with the physical. I’ve done half dome a couple times and Yosemite falls- this was beautiful, but you don’t need to drive yourself nuts to get the payoff of the views. Plus all the people and a couple annoying drones at the top sort of kept me from giving a 5 star rating. Even with all that said- you gotta do it at least once- just take plenty of food & water for 6-7+ hours of hiking!

I love Mt. Tallac. I've hiked it annually since 2013. Just hiked it today 10/27/18. The vistas are phenomenal and the reward at the summit helps you forget all the irritation you've experienced from the ascend. Not gonna lie though, this trail is entirely covered with rocks and loose gravels. After a while it can get really annoying as it makes it that much more difficult to ascend/descend when it doesn't need to be. Be prepare to get your bum kicked for the greatness that awaits you at the top. Head out early and take your time. Wear good shoes, have fun, and be careful.

hiking
15 days ago

hiked 06/22/2018

I am in better than average shape and it was hard, but definitely worth it. trail is rough on feet and dog paws. teenage kids griped less than me, but I was cramping. water alone wasn't enough! Cytomax should have been consumed.

Once at the top,views are comparable to Christopher's loop near Marlette. Enjoyed running into a group of highschool girl graduates with their Dad's from San Jose "Grads with dads"

rock climbing
15 days ago

This is NOT a hike!! It is a CLIMB. The rocks and incline are very difficult to navigate. Labeling it as a hike is very misleading. The views were nice, but you must be fit and have some mojo. This mountain kicked my butt.

Beautiful views of Fallen Leaf Lake, Lake Tahoe, Tahoe Peak, Echo Peak and Fallen Peak.

hiking
16 days ago

Moderate My Ass!

This is a pretty tough hike, but well worth it. The view of Lake Tahoe from the top is unmatched. It took us about 6 hours including stopping for lunch and enjoying the view at the top. Excellent scenery all the way up. You will need to be somewhat conditioned to complete this. Don't try this with grandma.......unless of course she is a bad a$$

hiking
19 days ago

generally: moderate distance, moderate-difficult trail, with amazing panoramic views of lake tahoe and surrounding desolation wilderness, best done on a clear day; trail mostly of loose gravel and large rocks making for difficult footing
trailhead: small parking lot with additional roadside parking (no passes/fees)
trail conditions: loose gravel and rock the first few miles, then large rocks/shale the remainder of the way
scenery: views the entire way up, initially in the forest with some views of lake tahoe and fallen leaf lake, pass by floating island lake and cathedral lake and then views of the surrounding mountains and lake tahoe toward the top; aspens with bright yellow folliage currently!
difficulty: hard given difficult footing, considerable elevation gain starting at elevation, took about 5 hours with stops for picture and lunch at the top
saw about a dozen people on the trail on a week day

hiking
19 days ago

Difficult but worth it! Amazing views at the top

This hike is amazing. The views from the top are SO beautiful. One of the things I would warn you about is hiking with dogs. I had both of my dogs with me, both very experienced hikers, and once we summited all the pads on their feet were completely ripped off. I think it was in part due to the rocks being super hot and being so jagged and sharp. Just use caution when hiking with your pups and if you have dog boots bring them!

hiking
20 days ago

Great short hike. Did it over the weekend; started at 0620 and got back down by 0945 (jogged down). The views were phenomenal. Be aware that, as everyone has pointed out, miles 3-8 or so are largely talus or loose dirt with lots of rock.

hiking
20 days ago

I have hiked this trail twice, both times I summited. Bring a lot of water as there are no creeks or any other “safe” sources (people skinny dip in the lakes).

Its a great trail and very scenic. Very fun and not very difficult. It took me about 5 hours round trip, the skies were clear and there were no disruptions. Stay out of the sun if you can as it is pretty brutal in July and August.

For the steep rock section, if you have the energy and are acquitted, I recommend going straight down the face. It is faster and takes a lot less time. Just have “respondent” ankles as I say, make sure your ankles quickly adapt and turn if a rock is loose.

No need for tekking poles or any special skills, just perserverance and water! Have fun and goodluck!

Well maintained trail.

There’s nothing more I can say about the view from the top - it’s outstanding.

However, don’t underestimate the challenge of this trail. I’m relatively fit, and it took me 3 hours up and 2.5 hours down.

I was quite surprised to see the types of people attempting this climb, and their level of preparation. As a minimum I’d recommend:

- Good shoes. Yes, you can do it in trainers, but they don’t offer your foot or ankle any protection, and this is rough terrain
- Suitable clothing. You wouldn’t go to the gym in jeans and a sweatshirt, so why try to do a 7 hour walk up a mountain in them? Hiking pants or shorts, and a wicking t shirt.
- A bag big enough to carry the items below
- A warm layer, and a waterproof one if it may rain. It gets cold once you near the summit.
- A whistle to get attention if you’re hurt or lost
- A torch if you’re walking near sunset or the days are short
- WATER. You need about 3 liters minimum. Imagine you were going to the gym for 7 hours and think about how much you’d drink. I saw people with 500ml for the day - that’s going to hurt!

hiking
20 days ago

Definitely a difficult one! But so worth it!

with being used to.sea level elevation this was one of the hardest hikes I have done but so amazing from the top. definitely a must at least once!!!

Amazing worth every step

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