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

Moderate-to-Hard Map
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Really nice. At some high points you can see the bay (or coast?). We took the Skyline Trail most of the way up then crossed over to Lake Maria road on way down since it was pretty steep and slippery on way up. Going down was easy on the road.

The views were amazing. Made this our first hike of the Fall season. Weather was nice and cool. First time wearing pants and a long sleeve :) We were a little confused coming back from Bear Lake as the trail was a little washed up, but we made our way back. Trailed off in the beginning, but got back on the path. This ended up being 10.5 miles for us due to us straying off course a bit. Totally worth it! Would definitely do it again

mountain biking
1 month ago

50% bike ride 50% walk because of the hills

trail running
2 months ago

I really enjoyed this trail. A variety of difficulty including Hard! Wonderful views ! Appreciated reading the previous comments, some very different from my experience but every day is different. I completed in about 3 hours.

hiking
2 months ago

Got a late start (as usual!) today so wasn't sure if I would get back before dark and my RV was parked in the day use area. It probably wouldn't have been an issue but I pushed hard and made it back at twilight without any problem. I went up on the left side of the lake and missed the turnoff to the peak at first but checked the app and saw my mistake so went back. I lost the trail shortly after that as well, it turned left and I missed it and ended up on a rocky ridge. After that I didn't have any problem except never did find out for sure where the actual high point on the summit was. I jogged back most of the way back down except for the real rocky places and returned on the same side of the lake. I saw a couple before the dam but no one else the rest of the hike. I was amazed that some mountain bikers have been riding down the upper part of the trail. They really seemed to like the rock jumps! A good hard workout with lots of elevation gain.

backpacking
2 months ago

Gorgeous views, lots of campsites at Bear Lake, good amount of shade, and trail was clearly marked. Took a couple of newbies and everyone had a great time.

well marked..lots of coverage.. go opposite direction to do steep first and have a hike stick - that be mighty helpful. The down is quite slippery for a short bit but otherwise great hike would recommend

Definitely will be doing this trail again. We only went to camp lake this day but will be back to continue to bear lake. The beginning is mostly incline and was heavily traveled with a few large groups. Once at the lake we explored a bit. It is worth while to hike up to the ridge to see the views.

backpacking
3 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 over Labor Day weekend and were not expecting big crowds at the Crabtree trailhead. Fortunately, we were able to find a nice campsite at the lake. Most folks had already set up at the south end (where the trail enters the lake) but there are a lot more spots if you continue north/left. Fuel here is at a minimum. Also, it's easy to pick up that this is a popular spot (toilet paper, bit of trash, no low limbs on trees, etc). Overall, a nice beginner's backpacking trip. The lake itself was quite warm at this time of year and good for a dip.

The elevation kicked my butt, yet the views were astonishing! Ended up stopping at Basket Dome and heading back, with a brief detour at Indian Rock. Be warned that there is some light scrambling to make your way down to North Dome itself. Keep an eye out so that you stay on the trail, unlike us! If you tackle this in the summer, bring lots of water, bug spray, and poles if you have them.

we only made it to Camp Lake but it was great!

Good place to take your little ones for a hike and camping trip. It’s gets very packed with people on the weekends!

Did this as an overnight backpacking trip with 8 in mid September 2017. Perfect hike for some first time backpackers that were on the trip. The trail is well marked and there are plenty of scenic spots to stop. We started around noon and made it to camp leisurely far before sunset. The southeast side of Bear Lake was pretty crowded since we started late. We continued clockwise off trail to the northeast side of the lake and were able to find a nice, secluded spot to camp.

Spent the Friday night before an Pinecrest campground, a great campground 30-40min drive from the trailhead.

Incline up the ridge to Indian Rock for days but one of the coolest arches ever with views of half dome.

nice rock garden for mountain biking

If you like to make jerky with your leg skin, then this is the trail for you. lower trail was great, upper trail was hell. over grown with a ton of thorns. ouch

hiking
5 months ago

We only made it to about 3/4 of the elevation gain, but we did get to some amazing views of both the mountain range and the lake from above.

The trailhead is pretty hard to locate: use gps and offline maps, don't trespass, and if you find yourself on an overgrown trail that doesn't look like it's used much - you are on the right path!

More photos: https://csgirllife.wordpress.com/pinecrest-peak-almost-stanislaus-national-forest/

backpacking
5 months ago

easy trail to bear lake, great trip for dogs! Campsites were pretty filled up by saturday, so i’d suggest leaving early friday morning.

Just went this past weekend with my 9 year old. We had a great time and would definitely come back again. Day 1: Crabtree TH to Bear Lake, Day 2: Bear Lake to Granite Lake, Day 3: Granite Lack back down to Crabtree TH

Hiked this in 2015. It was beautiful and my favorite hike we did in Yosemite...away from the crowds!

Took my 3 pre teens on this hike from Thursday to Saturday. We stayed at the mostly empty campground at trailhead on Thursday night. I recommend filling your bottles up at the bridge, cuz there aren’t any clean water sources after it. It’s 3.5 miles of predominantly uphill, and I could tell that was all the kids could do. Bear
Lake is loaded with fish, and my boys had fun casting lures. Dry wood is limited at Bear Lake, so you got to hike for it. I recommend avoiding the weekend, since there were tons of people heading in, when we were heading out. A great hike that we will surely do again in a few years.

Beautiful hike. We did it on a Sunday and most folks were backpackers heading back to their cars. It was very hot on the way back.

backpacking
6 months ago

I returned to this trail on 5/11-5/12, during that time it was cold and very windy we only made it to Camp Lake, i still love this trail seeing as it is only about an hour and 30 from my house.

Just did a day hike to bear lake with my 70 year father. It is a relatively easy trail with some elevation gains. We reached the lake in about 1.5 hours. We are planning on doing some longer over night hikes on Crabtree.

trail running
6 months ago

Dry and extremely hot in the middle of the day. Recommend wearing long pants given the narrow trails and significant overgrowth.

Amazing place. Camped at Camp lake Friday night (rolling fog, mostly wet) and then went on to Bear Lake. There are more to see to this wilderness and can’t wait to explore more.

Great hike!! The way back was A LOT harder! Fantastic view of half dome and clouds rest.

Day hiked from Crabtree Trailhead to Bear Lake and back on Memorial Day. Not surprisingly, there were lots of people on the trail the whole way. Great hike though. Unlike what a previous poster said, there were no mosquitoes. Not a single one. Trail was a bit muddy and mushy in places but not bad, and none of the small stream crossings were difficult.

backpacking
6 months ago

Awesome trail! Went for an overnight backpacking trip a week ago. Towards Bear Lake the trail was covered with the fallen trees and melted snow from winter and was a little bit hard to follow but wasn’t hard to maneuver around it. Some elevation gain but not difficult. Beautiful views along the trail, and a small river along most of the hike. There are a lot of good spots to camp along the lake with some fire pits. We had some hail and rain for a few hours once we set up camp but it passed through. Definitely a great overnight spot to camp!

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