trail running

wild flowers



dog friendly

kid friendly

nature trips


horseback riding




dogs on leash

off road driving




mountain biking

Stanislaus National Forest is a United States national forest which manages 898,099 acres of land in four counties in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of Northern California. It was established on February 22, 1897, making it one of the country's oldest national forests. It was named after the Stanislaus River.

Pretty! The loop around the lake goes by cabins and is well-trafficked and flat. The hike up to Cleo's bath is fairly flat and easy terrain (though sometimes hard to find). It truly is the last 1/4 where it gets hard—turns almost into bouldering instead of hiking. I started the hike around 7:45am and saw almost no one on my way up, but many on my way back down. Cleo's bath is freezing and still quite rough, but still beautiful and fun to put a toe in. Pinecrest itself is better for a swim right now.

Make note that Pinecrest itself is highly trafficked, with lots of boats and families, speakers and barbecues—it's gorgeous, but prepare for many people if you go in high season and towards midday.

1 day ago

Great hike, we did it this weekend, no problems in terms of snow. Camped at bear lake. Also, if you plan to go further: it was hard to get to Piute meadows. Some people made the river crossings, but was a bit too much water for us.

1 day ago

2.25 miles up & 2.25 miles down; amazing 360 degree view at 11,460'! Have done this hike several times but made it to the top only once, Sept. 2016.

1 day ago

Must do this hike every year! Popular but not too crowded, as immediate creek crossing & steep incline discourage the faint-of-heart. Power on past! Gorgeous scenery & stunning lake await you!

This is a classic hike. At about 7.5 miles RT, it's a great day hike that has it all: a rushing river, cascades right and left, convenient footbridges, minor creek crossings, a not-too-overwhelming elevation gain, historic artifacts, amazing rock formations, views galore, a large lake. There are lots of good campsites at the lake, if you're backpacking.

we tried the trail on 6/24/17 and there was alot of snow at the top still it was hard to find the trail. One of the run off streams was hazerdous to cross. We had to turn back due to thunderstorms and lightning. We will try again later in the summer after the water settles down, besides that it was beatiful.

3 days ago

Very few other hikers out on a weekday in July 2016. Wonderful views and the roar of the rapids was a welcome background sound.

beautiful trail to hike, specially when you are walking around the lake. the last half mile is very rough but worth it, take lots of water with you. enjoy.

Good place with a pretty view of the canyon. I use this trail to run for it's pretty flat and not super busy. Easy to find and always has parking.

7 days ago

Not much elevation gain but very uneven terrain. Based on 'easy' I took my 81year young mother. It took 4hrs....

7 days ago

This was a fantastic hike. It was difficult for a non exerciser who works on their feet all day. It is dog friendly however your dog must like horses as there are lots of them on this trail and there is an etiquette for backpackers around horses (posted on signs). The scenery is spectacular but prep yourself with stair climbing exercise before going. It took about 3 hours to reach the north shore and I think it would have been another 45 minutes to get to the south shore where there are more camp sites available.
If you enter Kennedy Meadows the parking lot is right to your left but it is a .5 mile walk to Kennedy Meadows lodge/store where a drop-off can be made. You walk from the parking lot down the road past the campsites and cabins. I recommend a drop off of packs and hikers then 1 driver goes pack to park the vehicle. I believe it is actually almost 1.5 miles to the Wilderness sign letting you know you are entering Emigrants Wilderness and then the climb begins.

We were so tired reaching the top we went to the North side... after you peak head to the right which brings you down by the dam. The North side is shy on camp sites so next time we go we will spend the extra time to head to the left after the peak and then hike to the south shore where there are plenty more camp sites.

Snow melted! We could drive down to the parking lot on the access road which required careful navigating in our SUV to avoid the 3 R's: rocks, roots and ruts. Take a moment to read the informative sign before you go up. It is amazing to imagine their formation. Worth seeing if you are here.

Very easy yet fun trail