Explore the most popular trails in D. L. Bliss State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

DL Bliss and Emerald Bay State Parks include more than six miles of magnificent Lake Tahoe’s west shore, covering 1,830 acres in California’s Sierra Nevada. From the scenic overlook on Highway 89, you can see a brilliant panorama of Emerald Bay, Fannette Island, Lake Tahoe and the distant Nevada shore. Nearby Eagle Creek cascades over three falls and disappears into the lake. The grandeur of the parks and their setting is a product of successive upheavals of the mountain-building processes that raised the Sierra Nevada. From promontories such as Rubicon Point in D.L. Bliss State Park you can see over one hundred feet into the depths of Lake Tahoe. On the crest of Eagle Falls in Emerald Bay State Park, you can see a brilliant panorama of Emerald Bay, Fannette Island, Lake Tahoe, and the distant Nevada shore. DL Bliss State Park is named for a pioneering lumberman, railroad owner and banker from the region. The Bliss family donated 744 acres to the California State Park System in 1929. The nucleus of Emerald Bay State Park, including Vikingsholm, was sold to the state for half the appraised value by Placerville lumberman Harvey West in 1953. The Savethe-Redwoods League helped raise funds to acquire the land. The park is located 17 miles south of Tahoe City on Highway 89, a couple of miles north of Emerald Bay. The Day Use Annual Pass is accepted at this park. Summer temperatures range from about 75 degrees during the day to the low 40s at night, and winter temperatures average from a high of 40 to a low of 20 degrees; during extremely cold winters Emerald Bay freezes over. The park is closed during the winter. Dogs are not permitted on the trails, on beaches or in the Vikingsholm area.

hiking
2 days ago

Beautiful hike

hiking
5 days ago

Beautiful hike Stunning views of lake and water

Fun, quick trail to small hidden lighthouse. Spectacular lake views. Somewhat strenuous.

hiking
8 days ago

If you’re in Lake Tahoe this is the trail to do. You can run the whole trail or walk. We ran most of it. We also stopped by a small cove and swam for a minute. Get there before 8 AM!!!

hiking
9 days ago

Rubicon trail- Left from Emerald Bay Parking lot at 8:30 am - got back at 2. iPhone measured 11 miles on the nose- we started at Vikingholm and ended at Bliss Park and return. The hike is easy, got hot on our return. Moderate hiker traffic, lots of shade in the morning. The views are OUTSTANDING, absolutely PHENOMENAL. No bathrooms on this trail except the parks. Crossed two creeks, easy. Very dry and dusty. The worst part was climbing the road from Vikingholm to the parking lot- WOW, very steep and hot. Excellent hike, very clean, well maintained and friendly hikers. Recommend very early start to avoid hiker traffic and hot weather.

hiking
9 days ago

Great views! Go in the morning to avoid the crowds. We started at D.L. Bliss and hiked to Emerald Bay for nice 8 mile.

hiking
12 days ago

Didn't complete the full run, but from what I saw, great trail. Pretty easy hike, with incredible views. However, we took the chance and went on the week of July 4th. Never, ever, ever again! The misery of getting to and from the trailhead made it hard to enjoy the beauty of my surroundings. It wasn't until my girlfriend and I were able to isolate ourselves a bit, that we could really have some fun. Aside from the overwhelming stupid people joining us on the trail that day, the hike and lake itself were absolutely stunning and I'd love to go back in the off season. But I strongly advise against going during the holidays like such, unless you enjoy stand still traffic on your way to nature.

hiking
13 days ago

Amazing views!

hiking
16 days ago

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hiking
17 days ago

Started from Eagle point campground, parking lot off to the left after site #33. Day use fee is $10. IT's very pretty and not too difficult. The trail is out and back, so the hardest part is the final uphill part at the end as you come back to the parking. Not all that crowded given the time of year, there were a lot of people around the swimming area down in emerald bay, but the trails weren't crowded.

hiking
18 days ago

I had initially said that Sleeping Bear Dunes was the prettiest place I had seen in the states, but the Rubicon Trail Trumps that hands down. We hiked from DL Bliss State Park to Emerald Bay which totaled around 8 miles there and back. The hike out was pretty simple because it was mainly downhill but the returning trip was a little more challenging. Every turn you make there is a BEAUTIFUL view. It’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before. Great views of the teal, clear water of Lake Tahoe and snow capped mountains. I suggest parking in DL Bliss State Park because it’s free and right by the trailhead. Also, getting an early start (8am) is key because the trail is basically all to yourself but returning by early afternoon is definitely a lot busier. HIGHLY recommend this trail. It was stunning.

hiking
19 days ago

The great thing about this trail is that, no matter where you decide to turn around, you’ve seen the best view. It has beautiful views of the lake all the way along. The terrain changes up quite frequently, so it stays interesting. Very populated trail, and parking can be limited at the Bliss end, so an early start would be best.

hiking
19 days ago

Left from Emerald Bay SP parking lot at 8:15 am and hiked down to Vikingsholm. Trail was relatively quiet at that hour, with enchanting morning light and shadow. We especially liked the way the lake changes color in the different light from different perspectives. Vikingsholm is a shady enclave with clean restrooms and a Visitors Center. Strongly recommend the 1/4 mile detour hike to Eagle Falls. Return was a climb, but gradual, and with varying steepness.

hiking
20 days ago

Only did part of this trail but lovely views along emerald bay. Recommend for any one.

hiking
1 month ago

Easy stroll along the lake. Lots of trail runners out. Fairly crowded so best to get an early start.

Beautiful hike! It was neat to see the lighthouse and read about it. The views on this hike were incredible! I would definitely recommend doing! It was a pretty easy trail. We also so a couple families and the kids seemed to be enjoying themselves. =]

awesome trail, great views and swimming spots

hiking
1 month ago

awesome trail, great swimming spots and views.

Trail has really nice views. A bout a sixth of the trail is on a paved road. Kind of a bummer. However the walk was worth it

hiking
1 month ago

We didnt want to start at Vikingsholm (because its way too many people there and because we already seen this side of the lake when did Eagle falls). So our start point was Calawee Cove beach (drive to DL Bliss state park, pay $10 to get in, another mile from the entry gate to the beach parking). Very nice trail, cliffs, stone steps, walk through the forest.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful trail! We started at Eagle Point Campground, which was closed. We had to park on the highway and hike in to the trailhead. It was nice because we had the trail to ourself the first couple of miles. Birding was great— we saw our first Pileated Woodpecker and a bunch of nesting Ospreys. Super rad! All in all it was a beautiful hike, but long. By the afternoon it was pretty hot and I would definitely recommend sunscreen and a hat.

Amazing! Great view to lake and mountain as you go. The beach at the end is like a hidden gem! The lighthouse is tiny which we almost missed it. The trail actually starts inside of the camp site so that’s a little confusing but overall easy to follow.

hiking
1 month ago

It is one of the most scenic hike in Tahoe area. We hiked on Friday and again on Saturday with our friends. It is good for all age groups depending on your fitness level.

hiking
1 month ago

GPS clocked us at 14 miles and it took us about 7 hours with lunch and stops for photos. If I could suggest anything it would be to stop at eagle falls right past the beach. The beach is a great spot to eat lunch at but if you keep going you're gonna hit a giant hill with nothing but a tiny "ampitheatre" at the top which is just some benches lined up. You do get a nice view of the other side of the mountain but it's debatable if it's worth the climb for just that alone. You'll probably add another hour and a half to the hike. Not worth it unless you have a car parked on the other side. We ended up getting to the top then just going back down to the beach for lunch. There's some kayak rentals, a visitor center, and some asshole geese at the beach to have some fun with if you wanna add some activities to your hike.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful trail...this is a nice trail for everyone as there are not many inclines or hills to worry about. Great views of the Bay. Even younger children or less experienced hikers can enjoy this trail. We saw several osprey nests high in the trees.

hiking
1 month ago

A wonderful trail with waterfalls, breathtaking tall trees, lovely scent of pine and cool breezes from Emerald Bay. Is definitely come back!

Such a gorgeous hike along the lake! There was no snow on the trail and it was in the 60’s. Will definitely be back to do the full Rubicon trail next time.

Love this trail along Lake Tahoe 's blue water

hiking
1 month ago

On the easier side. Breathtaking. Touristy.

hiking
muddy
snow
1 month ago

Awesome hike. Beautiful scenery.

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