Explore Nevada City - 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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backpacking
4 days ago

Great hike

4 days ago

Amazing views!

Great hike with amazing views! Going down was a little tough/slippery... bring gloves!

hiking
5 days ago

I have done castle Peak at least 5 times. I have completely circled it and spent a night at Warren lake. I have also done Andesite and Basin Peaks.This is an amazing area. It is loose and steep up the final ridge. Bring poles. Also you can park closer if you have a high clearance vehicle. We mad a video of our last ascent it can be found on YouTube at Chris and Bobs adventure channel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cpJF3zCamY0

Love Glacier Lake and Island Lake. Favorite Is to go from Carr Lake to Island Lake day 1 and then to 5 lakes next day and back home on Sunday. My favorite local backpacking spot.

Great day hike. Poles would've been a smart idea since it is rocky and slippery in spots. Beautiful views ❤️

hiking
11 days ago

Hi all, my friends and I are undertaking this hike soon, is hike 10 miles there and back or 10 each way (20 total)? A couple of sites I went to doesn't seem to clarify this and people are confused.

Thanks!

absolutely beautiful

backpacking
12 days ago

This is my first post so I apologize if I forget to include any info. I backpacked & camped with z group of 5 people for 3 nights at Upper Sardine lake. Got there via the Mono Pass Trail that starts off at Tioga road from the east entrance of Yosemite. Not a hard trail but also not easy either, then again I’m a newbie. This was my first camping trip, never backpacked before in my life, first time to Yosemite, first time fishing, first everything and I loved it! This was the most beautiful amazing adventure I’ve ever had. From the start of the trailhead inside Yosemite to our campsite outside the park in Inyo under the trees next to the lake, the scenery was breathtaking to the point of bringing tears to my eyes, then again being my first time in the wilderness I was having a bit of sensory overload from all the beauty and the silence away from humanity. There were little to no mosquitos, saw a few deer, tons of fish in this lake, they kept jumping out of the water it was so cool! Took a day hike through Parker Pass to Parker Pass Lake which was the most beautiful color of cobalt blue I had ever seen. Throughout the duration of my stay we hardly saw another soul in sight except for a day hiker here and there. The one thing I underestimated as a newbie was the cold at night; during the day we had beautiful weather in the mid to high 70s, but at night it was in the low 30s and I suffered a bit, lol. But despite the cold at night, I enjoyed every single moment of this trip and can’t wait to go back. This trail was totally doable even for a novice like me, so don’t worry when the trail goes from easy to all uphill for about a mile and a half when you almost reach upper sardine lake, the view of Mono Lake far down below and the serenity of this place are completely worth it. This place is beyond amazing and perfect everyone.

backpacking
14 days ago

Just finished this hike over Labor Day. Started at the Carr Lake TH. The road really wasn't that bad up to the TH. Just take it slow and go around the big rocks. Not much parking up there at the TH. Creative parking for sure. The trail starts on a dirt road, travels past Carr Lake and Freely Lake. Lots of families and kids swimming here. For the most part this 6 mile hike to Glacier Lake is pretty easy if you're in good shape. Last two miles is uphill, but really not bad. I did it in less than 3 hours with a full pack and several stops. Lots of campsites at Glacier, but this busy weekend made it pretty crowded with some loud campers late at night and early am. Hiked the Sandy Ridge trail back west the next day. The ridge affords some fabulous views, but the 1000 foot drop is on a rocky, steep trail, typical of older trails without switchbacks. We took the north trail up towards Sawmill Lake finally camping at Rock Lake almost 8 miles later. You pass Shotgun lake on the way to Sawmill. No camping there. This section of trail is through forest and really no place to camp. The climb to Rock Lake was long. Rock lake is nothing spectacular but had a few nice sites. Day 3 we hike from Rock Lake south past Penner Lake and back to Carr Lake. This section is really beautiful with lakes that have some private sites near rocky cliffs. Much prettier than Rock or the Shotgun lake side of this loop. Lots of people out here on day hikes which is what I expected for Labor Day. I would do this hike early season when there might be more water and when there's snow in the higher country. I gave this 4 stars only because there were so many people out there!

Loved it. Beautiful views. It’s a good work out for those that want to push it. Or you could take it easy and enjoy the scenery.

Took my daughter and I and we completed it in two hours. We ran the whole way back..

There were only a few other hikers in the area.

*popular hike....lots of folks here.
*easy hike....not well signed though...
*beautiful views, very pleasant ...some shade.
* bring enough water- there isnt any here.

Had a great time hiking the trail to salmon lake with our kids (7 and 9). Definitely an easy trail that we could do again sometime with the grandparents too or as a first backpacking trip. We opted to go off trail and hike around the lake, totaling about 4 Miles on the GPS there, around, and back. We spent 5 hours total including lots of sitting, playing, wading and swimming. A perfect afternoon!

It’s easy to lose the trail for a little bit around the first big rock outcrop. Just look around and you’ll pick it right back up again, it’s a well travelled path.

Driving directions are not correct. After the point where the directions leave off drive another 1.5 miles forward, over a pretty big rut that will get your attention. Trail is obvious, wide and on the left. We made the trip easily but carefully in our minivan.

Lower section is open to high clearance vehicles in summer. Suggest taking Pacific Crest Trail to the junction near Castle Ridge. Also note short extension on PCT to Peter Grubb Hut at Round Meadow.

Loved it!!! Great day hike!

Accessing the trailhead was fairly easy. the last 2.5 miles or so is dirt road, but the majority of this road is well maintained. It was really only the last quarter mile that was really bad. My Ford Fusion definitely dragged bottom a bit, so for power profile cars I would recommend stopping short and parking a little ways back from the main trailhead parking area

The trail itself was beautiful with many amazing views. The last part of the trail, maybe 1/2 a mile from Lake Penner is the steepest portion and gets a little rugged; but is likely manageable for kids 4+

Other reviewers have mentioned an accumulation of human waste and toilet paper around Lake Penner. I did not encounter too many campers around Lake Penner (there were far more campers around some of the other lower elevation lakes along the trail) and did not see the same accumulation of waste mentioned in other reviews. That being said, I did not traverse around the entirety of the lake, so cannot tell you what it is like around the entirety of the lake. However, I did not come across a single piece of trash on my way in or out and actually thought the trail was well kept given the number of people I encountered.

backpacking
18 days ago

Stopped at this overlook on my way to Warren’s lake! Great little spot to take in some beautiful views of Frog Lake and the surrounding areas. Sat on the rocks and ate some lunch. Went about 730am on Saturday. Only person on the trail. Mostly shaded by trees all the way up. Great work out.

Unfortunately, Patrick’s review is right, this area is just too impacted. There is a fair amount of toilet paper scattered about the area, as well as other trash. It’s too bad, because it was a great hike and the views are amazing.

Great hike. Would consider more moderate than difficult. One downside is the freeway noise for the first mile or so

I love scrambles and steep hikes but the trail was so slippery it wasn’t fun. Constantly trying not to fall. The views were pretty good but there are certainly much better hikes in the area

It was gorgeous and well worth it. We never found one trail sign though and asked other hikers along the way. There are several other trails to other destinations so it is too bad it has no signage. The only one we saw was the PCT marker.

backpacking
23 days ago

Lovely hike but extremely busy. Almost ended up making camp away from the lakes as there was hardly a spot to setup camp. Finally found a nice little spot at the northeast end of Upper Loch Leven Lake.

hiking
24 days ago

Great hike. Spectacular view of the lake!

backpacking
24 days ago

Great trip last weekend with my eight year old daughter and some friends. This was her first trip and was as good hike for both of us. The lakes are absolutely gorgeous and the 2nd lake is perfect for camping. We got a little lost on the granite before the railroad, but the markers were pretty good to help get us back on track. The only downside is the number of people. We saw people everywhere we looked and had people hiking through our campsite on the east side of the lake constantly. Nevertheless, the experience was great for the first time and having my 8 year old say at the end of the trip " We are so doing that again!" was the highlight for me!

Really liked this hike. Easy slope to start and a tougher climb towards the end, but the views at the end are worth it. The trail links up with PCT and Summit lake trails too if you're looking for something a little longer. Only downside was having highway 80 right below you, it can be heard during most of the hike.

backpacking
25 days ago

NOTE: For those complaining about people walking through your campsite, don't camp by the trail or water! First of all, it's expected that people would walk through. Secondly, there's a rule that you set up camp at least 200 feet away from both the trail and the water. Don't blame others if you were one to not follow those guidelines (and use your judgment).

The first time I did this trail was on 7/4/2017. I went back a few weeks ago with my friend who I had actually met there, then I went on 8/11/18 to backpack with my boyfriend for the Perseids meteor shower. I was worried about it being a tough hike with our packs, but it wasn't bad at all since we averaged about 35 minutes on the way up. I also made sure to hydrate the day before and day of.

As others may have mentioned, you can take the wrong path where all of the exposed granite is. There are cairns that do help, but at least keep the map on you. Other than just a couple of those spots, the trail is easy to follow. There are lots of downed trees that are climbable, or you can walk around a few of them. Also pack lots of water or at least bring a filter, and bring food. Sunscreen is also a great idea.

After the seemingly-endless rocky switchbacks, you'll notice that this is the perfect hike your both you and your furry friend to swim in an alpine lake or three! The lakes are also never packed, so they're truly gems hidden away into the mountains. All three are beautiful. We camped at the second lake atop a granite hill. Beautiful view of the sky..

By the way, if you think you hear a bear, it might just be the common nighthawk making booming sounds with its wings. It scared us half to death.

backpacking
25 days ago

We went on a non-holiday weekend and there were lots of people at the lake. Probably not surprising since it's a fairly easy hike in and we saw lots of families with young children there. Luckily, we didn't have an issue with mosquitoes! Would recommend Penner Lake for people looking for an easy backpacking trip and don't mind having others around. As other folks have mentioned, if you're starting from Carr Lake Trailhead, the last 5-10 miles of the ride to there is unpaved with large boulders. A car with high clearance is recommended.

Wow it was definitely 4 out of 5 stars

Absolutely beautiful trail! Very fun and a great challenge, but we definitely got off trail a few times. I’d definitely recommend having someone come with you who knows the trail. There were a few stretches where the trail dwindles off and you can’t really tell where to go. But other than that amazing!

Great hike 8/23/18. Two 60+ year old women did the hike no problem. Not as rocky or slippery despite my fears after reading some of the reviews. That being said, I left my dogs (2 Border Collies) at home. Would not recommend bringing a dog. Hard on their feet and they could literally fall off a cliff if you’re going to the very tippy top. Plus it’s very sun exposed. Made it all the way up to the top Castle Peak and then continued on the the ridge over to Basin Peak and back down on the PCT past Peter Grub Hut (very interesting). Total miles probably close to 9.5. Unfortunately my phone died toward the end of recording the hike. Would do this again. Incredible views.

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