Explore future trips - 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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walking
9 days ago

Great walk for my dog. The trail isn’t overly used, so the only sounds you hear are birds.

The drive to the trailhead is gorgeous. I only completed a portion of the trail because I arrived so late but it was windy, with wildlife all around, and beautiful views of the coast.

hiking
24 days ago

Beautiful views and moderately challenging walk/hike. Wonderful for the dog and humans alike! Ledges are a bit steep in places, so keep an eye on your dog if they like to chase squirrels.

backpacking
24 days ago

Awesome trail!!! If you plan well, go during a full moon. The light of the moon reflects off the granite mountains and lights up the entire area. For the most part the trail is well distinguished however there are two spots where the trial is on granite rocks with no trial marks. Walked trail late September and there was minimal water running in streams so bring plenty of you plan on hiking at that time. But plenty of water at end of hike at the lakes.

26 days ago

Beautiful!

easy, wide trail. beautiful flowers in spring. lots of birds.

Beautiful lake and great trail! The views of the Sierra's are stunning. Completed in September 2016.

Did this trail in November on a "light day" of hiking with my wife. I absolutely loved it - high elevation makes for a magical, quiet surreal experience as you trek upwards towards the mountain. Upon reaching May Lake, I was blown away - the isolated lake on the mountain top is something out of a fantasy book. Great spot to stop for lunch before heading up Hoffman. If youre going doing later months, bring an extra sweater - it's cold by the lake!

hiking
2 months ago

Enjoyed this trail and I added in a bit of Lakeview and East Shore to make this a 6 mile hike with about 900 elevation. Some single track but mostly wide. I got turned around a bit connecting to East Ridge from Lake View and had to do some backtracking as the trails weren’t as well marked but I’d definitely do it again!

hiking
2 months ago

Tried this with our dog. Not too difficult..

However we ended up getting a little lost (not very mapped out trails) a couple of times, if you keep going up the east shore trail it gets a little steep in terms of cliffs (not too difficult to hike, but was a little worried with our dog).

generally: moderate trail in Stanislaus Wilderness with good scenery most of the way, moderate difficulty, well maintained trail, decently popular for backpacking with sites scattered around the lake
permits: free, get at ranger station, fires allowed at lake with permit
trailhead: unpaved road for several miles, lots of parking at trailhead

hiked once in september with snow on trail and once in late july and swam in lake

hiking
3 months ago

this was a really nice and easy walk. my dog enjoyed it a lot. lots of beautful plants and trees. this area has a LOT of water which attracts mosquitoes so WEAR REPELLENT!!!!

backpacking
3 months ago

Totally blown away by the views from the meadow to the top of the pass. This was fairly difficult for my second backpacking trip but it was well worth it.

3 months ago

you will experience different environment every 2 miles on the way to ten lakes. enjoy!

Great place for horseback riding. Fire roads, and cattle trails alongside, nice easy to moderate hills for conditioning, little traffic, no dogs, no bikes, roomy parking lot, and some of the cleanest porta-potties you’ve ever seen.

backpacking
3 months ago

Ive backpacked all over the Sierra’s and this was one of the best overall trips!

The trail is very well maintained. That being said, the All Trails Pro app saved us a few times. First, along the granite part early in the trail, and secondly coming out of the lake area since there were a ton of trails up and down from the lake that didn’t lead to the actual trail. At all map checks, no matter the altitude or density of Forrest, the app showed us EXACTLY where we were and got us right back in trail without losing any time!

As far as the hike - wow...I would rate it moderately difficult. You’re scaling way more mountain than what I thought and the day ends with the most strenuous part of the hike. We started at about 10am and got to our lakeside campsite at about 4:30

The lake itself was spectacular! And trust me - I’ve camped at a lot of lakes. Yes - there are 6 other lakes to possibly explore and camp at, but the main lake was so huge that it was no problem finding a secluded private site. There were many developed camp sites created from pack groups along the south side, whereas most people camped in the obvious east side, so I recommend you explore that area for camping (make a left when you arrive at the lake and go down about half way+)

Lastly, you only need to go to the Big Oak Flat Information station to get a permit. It was easy and I was in and out of there in 10 minutes.

So enjoy!!

Was recommended to this by a co worker. It was a nice scenic drive, however, when you start getting close to the lighthouse the roads aren’t great. Not terrible, but not great. Lighthouse was going through remodeling so we were only able to see from atop. Great to go and see it once, but probably won’t venture out there again. Very overcast.

backpacking
4 months ago

Hiked this as an overnight backpacking trip with my family: two girls, ages 13 and 15, and mid 40s wife. We did so in June and it was exceptionally hot! Once we made it to the falls though we were able to hydrate and cool off in the river. Upside of the temperature may be that we had the place to ourselves. There was plenty of fuel for a campfire at the time and multiple campsites to chose from. Nice trip for beginner backpackers given the distance and elevation change. The trail itself was pretty overgrown in parts and, as others have mentioned, you have to watch out for poison oak.

hiking
4 months ago

Will probably do another review after we accomplish this, but we started our hike at 9:15am. We checked AllTrails and signs and said, “It’ll be 6 miles up and 6 miles back”. The trail got a little confusing to follow once we reached a lot of rocks and boulders, but luckily, we spotted humans to help guide us back! They were on their way coming back down as we were going up. One guy told us there was a bear 5 minutes ahead of us and that we should make noise to scare it off. First of all, this hike was extremely quiet. Almost eerie like before we saw these guys, and we were already a mile or 2 in. Didn’t like the quietness  we were “on guard” from there on and so we lost time cause we were walking slow and making sure to spot the bear. Luckily, we came across some backpackers and they said they didn’t see a bear. Good to know. The rest of it was an ascend up. We came across a very gorgeous meadow that put the spark back in. After that, it was nothing but a staircase ascend of rocks and uneven boulders. After taking a rest, we came across more backpackers and after checking the mileage on my FitBit, it said we were 5.76 miles in. Excited, we were ready to tackle the remaining 0.64 miles. Just to gauge timing, we inquired about the distance as we were facing a never-ending ascend up rocks. It was tiring. Guys told us it was another 2 hours before we reached the actual lake. This confused us a lot considering the current mileage we were tracking. We were also pretty bummed to hear that considering how far we had already trekked. And to top it off. it was already getting late. Too late to where if we continued on and came back, it would have been at least 4 or 5pm and more bears would have came out of hiding. For the record, we NEVER bail on a hike, but we didn’t want to take the risk, so we travelled back down from there. Just to be safe. About 9 miles in now, we finally spotted the bear the guys from before told us about. It was minding its own business, but was 2 feet near the trail in some bushes. We went around, and luckily, it didn’t try anything, considering we were walking on non-discrete pinecones  I’m sure it heard us. Anyway, we made it back down safely, but was kind of bummed because we didn’t get a chance to finish nor catch a glimpse of the lake. Not wanting the trip to go out in vain, we headed back up more to catch Tenaya Lake. Views were amazing  made the trip worth it again. All-in-all, if you’re serious about doing Ten Lakes, you’ll either have to make an overnight trip, start very early (sooner than 9), or don’t mind the bears that wander around late in the afternoon. I’m sure it was a breathtaking view, and I’ll send a better review, after I get to experience it! What we did was moderate. The incline was pretty intense, and being around hot chalky loose rock, messed up my toes 路‍♀️ looking forward to tackling this one again, BETTER PREPARED! 輪‍♀️律‍♀️

The hike seemed a bit longer than the sign indicated at the beginning of the trail from the parking lot (1.2 miles), but it was definitely worth the wait!

The hike was gorgeous and my mom and I got there just in time to see the sun set behind the mountains! If you’re planning on hiking around the same time (5-6pm) I highly suggest bringing a jacket because it gets chilling hiking on the way back.

beautiful backpacking trip. All trail app game changer, this trail fades at several spots Alltrail app kept us on track. Get it!!! My second time visiting these lakes, I have never seen any bears. enjoy be safe.

Perfect trail for the littles (ours are 3 and 5). There were some pretty flowers along the walk, and we saw a ton of quail, squirrels, cotton tails, blue jays, and hawks. Bonus: there’s a bathroom at the trailhead. We’d definitely come back!

Great hike one of my favorite. Views at the top are amazing and when you get to the lake it is even better. Nice place to relax and chill at the water, people swam and hangout. I would say its semi-crowded but worth it and the hike is moderate. A must try hike!

hiking
4 months ago

great hike but lots of poison oak. The trail goes right through knee to chest high poison oak especially on the first 1/3 of the trail. But other than that it was an awesome day hike!!!!

backpacking
4 months ago

Gorgeous hike from misty, mossy woods to the ocean, and I would recommend doing it CLOCKWISE as we did, rather than counterclockwise as is listed here. The Sky and Coastal trails were beautiful but the Woodland trail in between was poorly maintained and would have been really awful to do uphill rather than downhill as we did. Covering your legs is a must, particularly for the Woodland trail part of the hike. Accidentally took the Coastal trail back so was unable to see the Muddy Hollow trail.

Great trail. ROund trip from the parking lot to the lake and back was closer to 10 miles.

NOTE: paved road ends and you have to drive about 6 miles on a graded dirt road.

The trail had a few really nice vista points. And the lake was beautiful. I’d like to return and stay a couple nights.

Nice easy trail and my dogs loved it. Didn't see much wildlife but enjoyed the quiet. It's a great area to walk the dogs if you need a change of scenery.

The trail as marked starts at the entrance of the track, not from the car park which is 2 miles in. So if you want the longer hike, you can walk the extra 2 miles by starting at the road. Otherwise it’s a short and easy hike to the lake.

From the lake you can make your way up to Mt Hoffman which is a great summer scramble and offers great views of the valley. Highly recommended.

My son and I did this trail in 3 days. 1 in, 1 enjoying and 1 out. The switchbacks coming up the granite face were a little taxing, but so well worth it. This trail is amazing. Be prepared for bears!

off road driving
5 months ago

Beautiful back country dirt road. I used to camp between meadow lake and twin lake as a kid and it's still as beautiful as ever. Meadow lake has leeches. Just FYI. not sure about Twin lake. Theres a few more lakes up in the mountains that are between the blue lakes and twin lake.

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