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

favorites Map
VIEW FULL MAP

We only did the first 1.5 and it was very steep. Bring water for you and your pets! No views in that section of the trail.

Nice easy to moderate hike with lovely views. A little busy on a Sunday but it was also a holiday weekend. Try to go early! No smoke from fires when we went today (11/11/2018)

We started late not really planning on a hike but could not resist and the weather was great. We took our border collie who loved it. The high point of the hike was seeing a bald eagle! We will be back to complete the loop.

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!

hiking
3 days ago

Great hike

hiking
4 days ago

this trail is beautiful and challenging

hiking
5 days ago

Loved this trail, went during the off season and was able to have the trail to ourselves. Easy walk, beautiful views. Took us 1 hour and 15 minutes to get to the furthest lake and around 3 hours (with side hikes) to complete. You can get this trail done in 2 hours if you go straight there and back.

hiking
6 days ago

Beautiful hike. Lots of signs and markers. Well maintained trail. Lots of uphill but not too steep. Rock climbing opportunity if you are interested. Would highly recommend. We hiked about 8.5 miles overall but that included exploring the rocks and doing a Little Rock climbing.

*gravel road up to trailhead is a slow go, wash boards and rocky rocky.
*beautiful wonderful marvelous scenic easy short hike with lakes and forest.
*went in early November, so the crowds of summer are absent....
*lots of gorgeous other hiking in the area around here to explore.
*definately will come back here to explore some more.

horseback riding
8 days ago

Not only did i hike this but i also did the horseback riding guided tours back in summer. It was a cool experience! Definitely check out the guided tours during the summer when they are open since its seasonal. The hike was beautiful. The views were stunning.

Excellent afternoon hike with so many fantastic views. Would definitely hike it again.

I've done this hike twice in the last few years and the one thing I hate is that hike it a tad bit longer then main article here indicates. From top to bottom, this is at least 5 mile each way hike. The first I attempted it, I did it too late in the day and made it up about 4/5th of the way, but turned around as I was running out of water and light (no flashlight on me). The second time around I left early in the day and made it up in the early mid afternoon. The views are some of the very best. On the downside, their were I think 3-4 fires going on in that region so the views were also kind of spoiled too by a bit of haze. Oh well. Maybe next time?

Uphill hike all the way to the tower but sooo worth it for the views. It was extremely windy, and that made the shaded areas chilly. My dog did great on the hike up but once we hit the stairs to the tower, I felt is was extremely unsafe for her. We made it up to the third set of stairs with me white knuckling my grip on her harness before I had a bit of anxiety at the sketchiness of the stairs and then decided to carry her back down. The stairs are somewhat wide gapped with absolutely no protection around the side rails and it is a sheer drop down. My friend ended up staying with my pup so I could make it to the top by myself. And I did, but with shaky knees to be honest. If you’re afraid of heights, skip the tower itself. But the view from the tower itself is breathtaking !!!!!

hiking
10 days ago

Great hike but more like 5.7 miles from parking area. Even longer if you decide to take the detour out and back to Donner Peak from main trail up to Mt. Judah. Beautiful views.

Wonderful trail!

hiking
16 days ago

A relatively hard hike that is completely worth it because the views are incredible. I started this hike at the Castle Crags entrance parking lot. From the parking lot I took Bob's Hat up and crossed the PCT and then connected with Crags Trail. Did a quick out and back to Indian Springs along the way before continuing up Crags Trail to the top. Nothing terribly technical, just a bit of scrambling here and there as you near the top. Fun stuff. From the parking lot (and with all of the diversions I took) I ended up at just over 10 miles when I was done. Definitely will be headed back to this area to explore more.

hiking
17 days ago

Did this hike 10/24/18. Good, strenuous 8.6 mi out an back from the Soda Creek trailhead. Last 1.5 miles was mostly out of the tree cover, and the views of Shasta and the rest of the Crags was impressive. Had my 35 mm Nikon with me and took a number of “suitable for framing” photos. Great hike!

Probably the most beautiful lake in the Desolation Wilderness area. The stark, granite landscape and the crisp, blue waters of the lake make for a breathtaking sight.

fantastic finish..larger lake then I expected..great and peacefull views to be had at lakes...moderate is appropriate rating..can be better marked at beginning..u never know who put cairns up off trail..once you cross railroad tracks be ready for a decent amount of tree root/rocky trail..great for an overnight camping trip..just pick a spot..stoves ok for now..couple good spots around 2nd lake on sandstone for fire pits...shall return next spring

Views are awesome and very comfortable trail. Gets steep toward the end and somewhat sketchy. Hard coming down since its a constant decline.

hiking
19 days ago

unique area with great views. Leave dog at home:(

This is a quick, short trail with high return with the trail ending w 360 panoramic views of crater lake!

hiking
23 days ago

Went here for a hike with my boyfriend and he proposed to me at the end of the hike at glacier lake! Couldn’t have been better! Trail itself was maintained good, mostly dirt, sand, some granite but not as much as we expected. Passed a lot of beautiful lakes along the way. Saw zero people on way up and only a few at the end. We went on a Friday morning though so likely more populated summer / weekends. Brought our dog. Off leash no problem ! Lots of squirrels and chipmunks. Beautiful lakes, good tree coverage, fall colors, scenic overlook. Was not a difficult hike at all. Very gradual inclines. Hadn’t been hiking once this year but have done multiple backpacking trips in our past. This was a perfect gradual reintroduction to getting back in nature. Lots of camping spots.

We took a 2001 Camry down the road, made it the whole way. Definitely would have been easier in a 4 wheel drive car or a car with higher clearance. Wouldn’t recommend taking a little car. The road was ok but the very end had a huge drop off ditch that was tricky to navigate. But we managed ! If it was rainy or had been a wet season the road would have been a lot worse.

Nice views. Get to walk on some of the ski runs and good views of Sugar Bowl ski area.

backpacking
24 days ago

This is a great hike. Challenging, but worth the trek especially if you intend to camp. Just a couple of things I found would make it more enjoyable. Keep your app open as it is helpful to get you back on track as this one is a tough one to follow in many places. There are cairns the entire trail... thank you to those putting those in place. I wore tennis shoes which was fine, but hiking boots would have been better especially with the rocky terrain that covers most of the trail. If you’re backpacking I recommend trekking poles. This made the trip a lot easier for me just for stability while carrying the weight on the rocks and over boulders and downed trees. Day pack probably not necessary. Camped out at the last lake, had some great picks with fire pits. It was pretty and only a couple of us up there for October. Beautiful night. Had cellphone service the entire way, but could also still hear the highway at the last lake as well.

We are new to hiking and in our 50’s-60, so this is for newbies like us. Loved the views and weather was perfect in October. We actually walked the path counter-clockwise, not knowing how this app really works, and just realized, late, that the path direction is on the app. Heading down the peek of Mt. Judah Trail back to Pacific Crest was slippery and steep, the trail was hard to recognize. Now that I see we should have ascended that way, it makes some sense. We’re learning and love adventure.

Beautiful hike! Quite the workout, but very worth it!

hiking
25 days ago

The first 2 miles could be challenging for people who have knees problems because the trail was steep and could be slippery. We hike relatively slow with our dogs and it took us about 3.5 hours round trip.

hiking
25 days ago

Great, short hike. It’s a workout, but you are rewarded with terrific views. The lake is incredibly beautiful!

Load More