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Best hike ever, you will not be able to take a bad picture, the whole trail is huge a scenic view, each lake different, each unique.
Highly recommended!
Not a difficult hike, but moderate rating is correct

downhill is harder than uphill

It was my first time here and I loved this hike! This is one of the most beautiful hikes I’ve done in California! It’s more of a 4-mile trail, round trip. Definitely start this hike early in the morning to take advantage of the shade!

A nice outdoor hike. Not intense at all but its easy to get lost. I had to use to app to follow the trail.

Beautiful hike with rewarding vistas! Fun to explore the boulders at the summit.

For those who’ve been on the trail recently, what are the weather conditions at the top of the mountain, ie lowest Temperature, wind speed, rainfall?

Beautiful hike! Very exposed and important to bring sunscreen. Lots of views of the lake. We went during the week in the afternoon and there was barely anyone else there. Took our dog down to the lake for a swim and didn’t see a soul! Water taxi no longer running for the season. But it’s a pretty easy hike with slow elevation gains.

Great views. Tough at the top with the optional rock climbing, but worth it.

on Stonewall Peak Trail

hiking
11 days ago

9/13/2018: Short, sweet...perfect. We planned to come here for a sunset hike, but we misjudged midweek traffic and an unusually busy workday for me, so it ended up being a sunset/night hike. We arrived at 6:15 PM on a Thursday afternoon (an hour later than planned). Paid $10 and parked at the Paso Picacho Campground lot (if you’re arriving later in the day like we did, be sure to bring exact $$$, since there isn’t an attendant later in the day to provide change. One could argue that you don’t NEED to pay the honor system pay envelope “after hours,” but who wants to chance it? Not me; I have no idea where Park Rangers check the lots later in the day. And who wants to be that person anyway?) Walked across the 79 to the trailhead and embarked on the ascent. The “hardest” part of this easy hike is in the very beginning. Once you’re past that initial hump, the rest of the hike will be easy switchbacks, with a fun section at the very end “scrambling” up the rock faces (there are railings the entire way at the top, so fear not. It’s easy).

Made it to the peak in about 45 min, exactly at 7:00 PM to catch the sunset (with a couple short breaks along the way for photo ops). We made it back to the car by 7:30-45. It was full dark by the time we made it back down to the parking lot, so we took it slow coming down (good thing we had headlamps to help us along the way). The headlamps attracted a bunch of flying insects, so be sure to bring bug spray if you’re doing a night hike. It won’t stop them from flying towards the light, but it will keep them from landing/crawling on you.

We came across just two other hikers and a bunny on the way up, but otherwise, it was quiet and peaceful (save for a rattle from the brush we heard earlier in the hike, but didn’t see the critter itself). Overall, would highly recommend as a midweek sunset/night hike. The stars were drop dead gorgeous on the way down. It was absolutely worth the drive.

I love this hike!

Started from Patricia drive. It was a steady uphill climb from the start. I'm 51, overweight, but still managed to get to the very top on the rocks overlooking the entire area. My hikes are mostly on flat land in Austin area so this was a bit challenging. I'd rate Bishop difficulty a 5 to Cerro San Luis 3. The 20 somethings I was with had little difficulty. Once on top, it was a worth it. Surreal views of the area were incredible! Highly recommended. As others mentioned, watch out for Poison Oak and the climb was a bit on the rocky side. I have partially torn tendons in the right foot so just had to pay close attention to each step.

This is stunner. I do it every time I visit the area. One of my very favorites. Word of caution for older hikers with bad knees, hips, etc, however. Allow extra time for return due to multiple "steps" as you approach trailhead. I did this hike again yesterday. I had no trouble with altitude since I live in the mountains. Took me three hours to reach Gem Lake including 30 min lunch stop at Long Lake. Took four hours to return from Gem Lake to parking area since I really had to take my time on the descent due to my bad knees. Probably best to allow 8 hours to be on the safe side. Best to get started early morning due to limited parking also. Bring hiking poles to save those knees! Those with no knee issues will complete this hike much faster though. Enjoy! It's a beauty.

can be crowded but very few places have so much to see in such a easy hike

The Bishop Peak Trail from Patricia Drive is an moderate hike and the views are spectacular of the Central Coast. This hike of of the Bishop Peak Trail from Patricia Drive is well worth doing, great all year long, maybe not so much in rainy season. This video was shot in the summer so very little of both ticks and Poison Oak as hazards if you don't get too close to the sides or go off trail. Lots of wildlife if you look for it, mostly squirrels and rabbits, so hawks can always be present.
So the heading is incorrect for these two hikes and I sent in a correction. The map for the hike starts out from PAtricia Drive not Highland. The other Bishop's Peak Trail starts from Highland.
A Virtual Treadmill video of this hike can be seen on my YouTube Channel, copy and paste link below to watch it. Thanks.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFO02nxPdM4-CabegFIPlow?view_as=subscriber

19 days ago

Great trail, stunning scenery. Did it the week after Labor day so reasonably quiet. the only downside is that it starts at 10,000 ft so a day or two at altitude before is a good thing.

Great trail, easy enough for kids. My twin 6 year old boys made it all 5 miles in and out. Not much shade so dress light in summer and bring plenty of water. Only saw one other human on the trails.

hiking
20 days ago

great hike or run in the spring. usually a good wildflower display. parking can be difficult on popular weekends

go up training hill and down states fir a great run. about half way up training hill you can take pig farm as a shortcut to states if it gets to be too much.

Such a good hike and great 360 views up top. Go early to avoid crowds and heat.

One of my favorite hikes.
Gorgeous views, not strenuous but you feel like you went on a hike when you're done.
Completed without complaint by kids 5-12.
Pros - Nice workout, beautiful views, pretty campground at the beginning.
Cons - I didn't feel comfortable taking the 5 year old and 7 year old up the rocks to the peak (I've been called paranoid), although I didn't see any, there was a lot of chatter about rattlesnakes by other hikers.

hiking
21 days ago

Excellent hike. Not to hard and view at the top is great. Short hike but great gain at the end, as far as the final visual reward. I have done it 3 times now and will do it again.

Great day hike out to Gem lake with my two sons. (17 and 27) At my normal pace it’s not a difficult hike, but trying to keep up with the two of them make the hike more difficult than it should have been. Lots of opportunity for great pictures and you can gauge your progress by the number of lakes you pass. Only negative, there was a lot of traffic on the trail. We were rarely alone. If possible, I would avoid this trail on busy weekends, otherwise great hike.

hiking
22 days ago

Great hike. Relatively speaking, there is more shade here than in most trails in this area. Gentle grade most of the way up; the handrails at the top are very helpful. In contrast to posts a few weeks ago, we didn’t see any termites at the top - just great views in every direction. Would recommend this hike.

Went with my friend Don. Camped at Chickenfoot lake and day hiked to Gem Lakes. Awesome scenery. This is a very easy hike for a couple of 58 year olds. There was some pack animal traffic and a lot of day hikers. We had one late afternoon thunderstorm, but not too bad.

Fun place to take kids and dogs

Heads up. The lake is low so the water taxi will likely be closing before the usual date of Labor Day. Call the Echo Chalet ahead of time if the water taxi option is important to you

Good hike in winter; pretty hot in summer

Moderate to hard. Good for mountain running. gotta be cautious.

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