Explore to do - 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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hiking
22 hours ago

Would love to finish this hike!

Amazing views!

backpacking
3 days ago

Came here instead of Aloha Lake because we couldn’t find a permit. Absolutely gorgeous, totally manageable hike leading to an absolute playground. Round Lake itself is a tiny Oasis with an absolutely gorgeous view of the entire Tahoe Valley if you’re willing to do a little climbing. Despite camping relatively close to the lake we experienced no bugs, the weather was perfect, and we even caught a little meteor shower. What more can you ask for?

Make sure you check out the other Lakes too.

Great trail, easy and able to navigate. Will do it again!

hiking
11 days ago

Easy stroke to the best kept secret in Tahoe!!

Nice mix of rocky path and forested trail, sun and shade.

hiking
13 days ago

Without markers this hike was difficult to navigate and stay on target.

I’d say it’s a boring local trail. No views. The loop at some point takes you along the hwy, not very pleasant to walk with the dogs. There’s really nothing to this trail. I see why locals enjoy it: close by, easy. Maybe winter, fall, spring be a little better. Definitely not a summer trail.

Park itself is very nice. Definitely worth checking it out.

I started at Patricia, did the Felsmon loop, than connected with the Bishop peak summit. By the time an old man bicycles across town and hikes this, it's a good workout, throw in a little bouldering. Humbling, I don't care for inflated egos. Too my credit I go very slow. Went throuh 2L of water, phone needed recharging. I like the Aveenza offline map app. Find topo map, "Share" it to Aveenza, there you go, up to 3 maps free, can use store if desire. Been up this peak several times I consider this training. Also have become interested in climbing again, see how this goes.. You people should consider leaving your pooches at home, it is exposed and hot. Also watch out for poison oak, it is all over, stay on path. $20 bucks, tie me in, belay an old dude.

backpacking
24 days ago

We came to Lake Tahoe hoping to do a 1-night backpacking trip in Desolation Wilderness. Permits for the easy hikes were sold out.
So we tried Big Meadow / Round Lake trail.
Best decision.

My favorite 1-night starter backpacking trip I’ve ever hiked.

I lead groups on outdoor treks. This trail was fantastic. We had a first time backpacker, as well as some seasoned trekkers, and this loop satisfied them both. It fits a short schedule. 2 and half hours one way with loaded backpacks and multiple breaks.

Saturday night trip.

Plenty of parking. No backcountry permits required. Easy to start.


The trail starts with a terraced incline leading up to Big Meadow, which is an impressive midway spot. Continue a gradual incline along aspens and fir to the top of the ridge, with nice views of the Tahoe Rim Trail and Sierra backcountry. The peaks still had some spots of snow, mid-July. Beautiful. Yet trails were dry.

Then a quick descend into a basin with a small incline up to Round Lake.
The lake is surrounded by interesting rock formations. So much to explore.
Small warning, the ground is rocky with a natural cement aggregate like soil so finding a flat camp spot can be tricky. But we found one, if you continue on the left side of the lake about half-way you may see our spot.
This lake is good for rock Jumping, photos and more. Cool areas to explore. The right (west) side is better for swimming and diving.

The area is quiet, yet had a few other backpackers that made us feel safe enough yet away from crowds.
We could hear a bear crunching through the woods late at night, but no issues or encounter. We felt fine with the handful of other backpackers scattered around the lake.


Bring your swimwear
Bring good shoes
Don’t miss the sunset

One of our hikers had some slight soft knees and the trekking poles came in handy for the whole hike.

This hike is a must for Tahoe area backpackers. Also would make a good half-day hike

Beautiful lake and an easy uphill hike. The lake rents paddle boards and boats. Great place to cool off and swim.

All together spent 8 hours, started at church scrambled up loose rocks to properly insert myself on trail, I'm still sore! Came down near Costco went into wholefoods had dinner. Great views, great training exercise. Used Aveenza offline map app works great.

trail running
25 days ago

It is about 6 miles total from the parking area. Very very rocky in the beginning. Almost impossible to run. It’s worth it as you get to the summit and then a great run back to the parking area. Running up to the summit is really hard at a high altitude! Beautiful area!

hiking
27 days ago

Details: There are actually two different starting points for this trail. The one mentioned here is off Spyglass road (3 miles RT), but the other one is off Foothill Road (about 7 miles RT). This review is based off the shorter version from Spyglass Road.

Pros:
- Great views
- The first half is mostly flat
- Dogs allowed

Cons
- My biggest complaint, regardless of where you start, is that there is no sign or indication to let you know you've reached the finish line. You just have to assume because of the view and the path everyone else is taking.
- At least half of the trail doesn't have shade
- It is very crowded, but the longer version is less crowded. Even when I left today around 8pm, all the parking spots were still full.
- Not enough parking.
- Not well marked. I got turned around more than once because there were a couple forks with no clear indication of which way to go.

Amazing wild flowers end of June through July

walking
28 days ago

This was an absolute blast. Short easy hike for the little kids and enjoyable water. My 5 year old cousin had absolutely no problem with this trail and it was a great little trip for the family from out of town. Added bonus, on the other side of the lake there was some cliff jumps for the older kids and adults. Extremely fun day out for the family.

Still one of my favorites!! Tried some new trails this year and finally got back to this one for the first time this season! It's perfect for all fitness levels. I usually run it and feel safe doing so. The bikers are courteous and usually make their presence known! It is pretty much all brown now, but still lovely. Half sun and half shade. Some poison oak, but the trail is clean, clear and well marked!

on Castle Peak Trail

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike with amazing views.

Things to know: Take bug spray. You’ll be happy to have it in the first mile or so, before you get into fast elevation grades. Obviously, you need
water, glasses, and suntan lotion. I don’t like poles, but I’d think most people do.

The hike is 3.0-3.1 miles to the top. After the first 1.5 miles it gets much steeper with incline grades of 30-60 percent. Those don’t relent for almost the entire way to the top. At the top you have to do some very minor rock climbing to get to the top. Amazing views and feeling of accomplishment.

For those who are in very good shape it’s probably not that big of a deal. For the weekend warrior it’s a great workout but it’s not going to be easy, but you can do it!

Also, anyone who takes a 4 year old on this trail is irresponsible in my opinion. It’s way too steep to think taking a small child on the last mile
of this trial is a good idea.

hiking
1 month ago

I’m a beginner hiker and this trail was perfect for a first hike!

This "trail" is absolutely terrible. The park to echo peak is unmarked and a majority of the loop is marked. It's an EXTREMELY dangerous trail as it's slippery very steep inclines and not well worn. I'd recommend to take this off all trails if I could. I managed to slip and scrap my elbows back and wrist and my boyfriend the same. ALSO! bring bug repellent with you. Mosquitos will eat your ass alive. If you decide to risk your life go counter clockwise. After a long 8 mile hike this was not worth almost losing our lives. Do yourself a favor and do the other trail where it's a walk along the lake and then back.

Beautiful views, nice easy afternoon hike.

The trail starts of fairly rocky and smoothed out again until you get closer to the top. Very nice scenery throughout the hike. View from the top is a nice payoff. No water so bring what you’ll need plus food. Did it in early July and saw lots of wild flowers. Well marked. Hard to get lost. It took us three hours with stops.

Hike is fun, pretty. We went in the am and it was overcast making the trail not as bad...however many big rocks throughout the whole trail. Was not a fan of the rocks but the top view is very pretty. Poison oak is not too bad just keep an eye out for little bushes hanging out! Fun hike on a cooler morning

hiking
1 month ago

This was a fun hike with a friend. Lots of great views and the weather was perfect since we live in the valley. Nice day trip to get out of the heat and get in some fun exercise. Would definitely do it again.

Was looking for a 3 or 4 hr hike and a good workout. Was on the trail for 3.5 hrs. Really nice hike. Could hear water trickling through canyon for about 20% of the trail. A few really cool little waterfalls. Several forks on trail left me wondering if I went the right way. Took a wrong turn once and had to backtrack. Suggest GPS to keep you on the trail if you’re not familiar with the area. Some great views of SB and the Channel Islands. Got to the end of the official Rattlesnake Canyon trail but decided to keep going on another trail (Tunnel Trail maybe). After about 10 minutes on this trail, I was treated to an amazing view of SB. Definitely worth the extra time on the trail. Went on a Thursday. Parking was no problem and the trail wasn’t too crowded. Got just what I wanted - a cool hike and a great workout!

This is one of the definitive hikes for San Luis Obispo. The views from the top are gorgeous.

hiking
1 month ago

very difficult. i did the hike today & if you go counter clockwise for this loop, there are no markers except for stacked stones and no visual trail, which makes it all the more fun! we asked passing hikers for some tips & asked the right person who showed us the granite highway (also difficult and sketch in places) i recommend going counter clockwise so way back through is downhill. steep terrain and granite rock are toughest part of hike! but. the. view. totally worth it!

Amazing hike! Starts off fairly mundane...but then steps it up and is very challenging but worth the pay off at the end!

Highlight of my trip and especially great on a cloudy day when it's too cold to visit the beach. We made it up in under an hour and enjoyed climbing on the large boulders at the summit. However, be warned that there is poison oak everywhere (thanks for the tip random passerby), especially around the top. Wear long pants and enjoy the view.

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