Explore Great Basin Trip - 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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Did this hike yesterday in deep snow, packed in places but crampons definitely necessary!

I hiked this in fresh snow in snowshoes (the Lehman Caves visitor center will loan them out for free) and it was so amazingly peaceful and quiet. It felt incredible standing in the presence of the ancient trees. Didn't see anybody else the entire time - truly a spectacular experience.

This hike was especially nice the weekend of September 21st. The alpine trees were magnificent and the trails were not busy at all.

The aspens are out which is stunning. The bristlecone trees were fun to learn about. I would say it is not worth it to proceed to glacier peak. The glacier is barely visible. It was not physically hard to get there, there was just seemingly no reward.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful hike. Not too hard or easy. Loved Stella Lake and the wonderful views of the peak. Best of all worlds with driving much of the elevation change. Would highly recommend

hiking
2 months ago

The Glacier Trail begins at the parking area and campground at the end of the Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive in Great Basin National Park. The trailhead has restrooms and water. This is also the access point for the Alpine Lakes and Bristlecone loops, and you could use it as a starting point for the trek to Wheeler Peak.

This hike is fantastic. It took me much longer than expected because I kept stopping to take pictures. You begin by walking through a forest and eventually through a desolate rocky area leading up to a viewpoint for the glacier at the base of Wheeler Peak. The glacier is actually pretty small right now, but the towering cliffs all around provide spectacular scenery. Right now, if you look back down the trail you can see the landscape of the Great Basin in the distance, with the aspens just beginning to change color, introducing fiery red color mixed in with the green. Along the trail you also have the option to do the short Bristlecone Pine loop, which has genuinely interesting interpretative signs about these ancient trees. This trail is one of the more popular trails in Great Basin park, but the park is not very heavily used, so traffic is light.

Great hike. Once you get to the Bristlecone interpretive area, it's totally worth it to continue on to the glacier hike. You'll wind up looking right up the sheer wall of Wheeler Peak. The sides are lined with incredible cliffs and rock formations that are hundreds of feet tall. It's amazing.

hiking
3 months ago

This is one for the whole family. My kids love this trail. We normally see wildlife along the way to the lakes, and the kids like playing in the water.

hiking
3 months ago

Awesome cave. If you can, get your tickets in advance.

hiking
3 months ago

This is a great hike with a secret at the end. You can go past the "end" of the trail and find the actual glacier. That part is pretty difficult and requires some boulder hopping. I wouldn't recommend taking small children past the official end of the trail. There are cairns marking the easiest way up to the glacier, but they are difficult to spot. They line a boulder and rock ridge to the southwest of the "lamp post" at the end of the official trail. You can hear the water rushing from the glacier underneath the rock glacier as you get closer to the ice.

on Alpine Lakes Trail

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike for young kids. More of a walk than a real "hike" but the scenery is pretty great. There were very few other people on the trail and we had both lakes to ourselves for some of the time.

hiking
3 months ago

A great, easy-going hike to some lovely viewpoints. I used this trail as an acclimatization hike to prepare for Wheeler the following day, and I think it helped tremendously. Stella lake is very striking at the base of Wheeler. Teresa lake is quite low and a little paltry in comparison, but still a nice destination. I added on the Bristlecone grove to increase the length a little. The walk between points of interest is easy and well signed.

hiking
3 months ago

My review is from the perspective of an amateur landscape photographer

Trail was rated as “easy” and that’s appropriate. Trail description is accurate

The best place for photography is at Stella Lake. Nice alpine lake with some foreground interest. I recommend as wide a lens as you have. I used a 19mm with a C sensor and it wasn’t wide enough to capture the scene the way I wanted.

There’s another nice location about 1/2 from the trail head. Mountains in the background with pine trees in the foreground

When I took the trail is August 2018 the water levels at the second lake were very low. If you want to minimize your hike then just do Stella Lake. But the loop is pretty easy. So if you aren’t exhausted when you get to Stella Lake I recommend you just finish the entire loop.

I went in August but there was no snow and the Aspen hasn’t changed color. Late September is probably better but it may be much colder

walking
3 months ago

Definitely would recommend cave tour, we took 90 minute tour guide was great and we were fortunate as we walked in and were able to get tickets for tour within the hour in mid August

Loved the Bristlecone Pines at the end! On the way back hiked out to Theresa Lake a short side trail halfway down.

Did this yesterday 7/30/18 Teresa lake was very low. Stella lake was pretty but we were a little disappointed that it wasn't great to swim in. I still went in but it was only 2.5 feet deep at it's deepest and very very very soft bottom. I basically floated around trying not to touch the bottom! Still very refreshing. Highly recommend combining this loop with the Bristlecone/Rock glacier trail for a nice 7 mile hike.

Very unique hike. Loved walking through the Bristlecone Grove. We continued up to the end of the trail that goes to the rock glacier and then did the Alpine lakes trail on the way back.

hiking
5 months ago

Beautiful hike to Stella Lake and Teresa Lake. we did it in the late afternoon and didn't see one person the whole hike. I recommend following the creek above Teresa Lake to check out the natural spring!

hiking
5 months ago

Amazing loop, especially on the Stella Lake side.

hiking
5 months ago

The cave tour is a must. One of the coolest caves I've been through!

5 months ago

Book tickets in advance at recreation.gov or else you'll likely not get tickets in the summer time.

hiking
5 months ago

The 90 minute tour good. The whole park was beautiful. It wasn't all open due to snow. But what was open was a mix of river, granite, christmas trees and lite green trees. Gorgeous place. Bring your own food. There are VERY few places to eat in Baker, Nv

Fantastic trail with a big payoff at the end... sitting with the bristlecones was a memorable experience for my son (eight) and I. Elevation makes the trail more moderate than it otherwise would be, but we still beat the minimum recommended trail time of two hours round trip even with a reasonable amount of time spent amongst the trees.

Great way to walk through the forest with several sightings of at massive Wheeler Peak. High pay off rewards of this trail were the two beautiful Sub-Alpine lakes. Stella Lake is beautiful with Wheeler Peak looming atop. There's a fair amount of distance between the two lakes which makes the trail interesting. We enjoyed seeing a few families with children getting out on this trail to enjoy this beautiful National Park.

Spectacular day. Trail is fairly moderate with good amounts of loose stone fill in some areas. Trees are majestic in their own way. Seeing living things this old is humbling.

walking
7 months ago

We went on March 3, 2018. Though it was winter, they do one or two tours a day on winter weekends. It was full, even then! If you want to go in the summer, book well in advance. The guide was awesome as she knew a lot about the cave and could give us a lot of facts (both social and scientific) about the cave. The cave is modernized with steps, cement pathways and lights. Our tour was 1.5 hours and well worth it!

I did try to record the path, but since you are underground, you can not record the path, no GPS signal. The recording and map of this path provided here is most likely the above ground visitor center nature trail loop.

See our video: https://youtu.be/LQWllU_aeOY

Ah!!! This trail was awesome! The hike itself is not very difficult except for some snow/ ice patches (October), but the trees were phenomenal! You get right up in the patches of Bristlecone Pines and there's educational signs for those of us in the nerd community. Loved it!

9 months ago

Boom!

on Alpine Lakes Trail

hiking
Saturday, November 04, 2017

This is a relatively easy hike at the top of Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive within Great Basin National Park. I thought it was kind of blah, but maybe I am spoiled by some of the other lake hikes available in the Utah region. At this time of year, the lakes are pretty low as well, and they might be more impressive in the spring. I actually did the loop after starting off trying to climb Mt. Wheeler, but only made it 3 miles due to cold, thin air, and wimpiness. This hike is at a pretty high elevation, so plan accordingly if you are not used to the altitude.

hiking
Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Just came from Alaska so the glacier was a tad underwhelming, but still really cool for being the only one in Nevada.The bristlecone pines were really cool and there are some interesting boards that provide some information.

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