Explore the most popular dog friendly trails in Stanislaus National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

backpacking
13 hours ago

Bring lots of insect repellant, the mosquitoes are ruthless and have carried off small pets

off road driving
3 days ago

Great trail but definitely go with others. My stock two door rubicon did well, tho I did scrape the skid plates underneath a bit. It’s better suited for vehicles with more ground clearance and bigger tires.

hiking
5 days ago

Nice and simple trail, crater was a cool lime green color surrounded by some trees.

does anyone know if slick rock is open yet? I would like to go up this weekend

Perfect day hike with dogs. Enough people on trail in early May for guidance (as needed), else terrific solitude. Good uphill ascent to get your blood flowing. Will try to stay at the cabins at the trailhead or pack in next time to hike deeper into Emigrant.

Pretty nice, we did it in the snow so it took a bit longer. 1 question why do people pick up their dog poop, but then leave the damn plastic bag? Retards.

on Lyons Dam

fishing
22 days ago

Easy and scenic hiking and quiet fishing on most weekdays.

hiking
25 days ago

It's an ok hike through a nice pine forrest, but the craters aren't that great. Nothing much else to see.

Definitely a “easy” trail. Not moderate at all. Great Lake and cold swimming most of the year.

hiking
2 months ago

It was snowy and lovely. Met a couple of hikers. Saw folks on horseback. We only made it about 2.5 miles in and didn’t hike all the way to the dam. That was too much for us in the snow. We did see a small cascading waterfall. Very small. Lots of wildlife tracks. Exciting.

walking
3 months ago

Nice walk on a dirt road. Pretty busy with dogs, bikes, runners. Open in winter. Will go back!

snowshoeing
3 months ago

Was a really gorgeous, but we missed the trail and went straight at the end of the parking lot and had a hard time finding the trail to the Craters. Go left at the end of the parking lot and follow the blue markers all the way up! The Craters are frozen right now so no bright blue water but still really pretty.

off road driving
3 months ago

Are there trails that I’d be able to take my stock 2017 tundra on? I’m not expecting to do rock crawling, I just want to get on some dirt roads and climb up the mountain to see some beautiful sites!

on Lyons Dam

3 months ago

If you don’t have any fear of heights - walk the flumes to the dam. The views are stunning.

Nice easy hike for our family of 4 and 2 dogs. Daughters, aged 7 and 4 handled it well. Beautiful scenery set alongside the river.

off road driving
5 months ago

Had some snow and ice to add some complexity, but was pretty easy and enjoyable trail.

Easy trail for all levels. Very gradual incline that follows the river the whole way. Walked with a 5 year old, an active grandma and carried a 4 month old. We took almost 3 hours round trip on this casual walk. Beautiful walk. Shady coverage for the majority of the trail.

backpacking
6 months ago

Not really sure why this says 10 miles, the map that I have marks it a little over 6 miles to the lake.
This was definitely a beautiful adventure! My friend and I chose this trail for our first backpacking trip and besides us not being correctly prepared, this was the perfect choice!
We started at 1030 and didn't make camp till 1700! Those backpacks really slow you down! The last mile, we walked through ankle deep mud and thought it was never going to end! Luckily, we made it, made camp, froze, and ended up having to share a tent. Thank goodness we brought emergency blankets haha.
Because of a miserable night of sleep/freezing, we cut our trip short and headed back at 0900 and made it to the car at 1500. We found a much easier way back through the marsh, just hike higher up, farther away from the water. ALSO, the ground was pretty frozen, so that definitely helped.
It was an amazing experience and am currently on the hunt for a better, warmer sleeping bag, so I can do it again soon!
Oh, the trail was pretty dead, but make sure to wear bright colors, there were lots of hunters for deer season.

We went out for backpacking and fishing for 2 nights, 3 days. Fun trail, seen some wildlife. Beautiful views and lakes. Not too successful with the fish tho. lol

Got up early on the 4th of July and did the reservoir hike from Kennedy meadows. plus about 3 miles and back. Gorgeous and enjoyed the views of the reservoir in solitude. And hey the trail
Ends with a saloon.

Nice trail. Craters aren't anything special. Big holes in the ground with some brown water. The smaller one is ringed with trees. Makes for a nice photo or two.

7 months ago

I've been hiking this Trail for over 30 years in my most recent hike with my Great Danes I do believe I found some mountain lion tracks

backpacking
7 months ago

Great hike, just backpacked it Sept. 29 - october 1st, fun hike for all levels of hiking experience

hiking
8 months ago

Short hike with fairly steep incline, but once at the top the crater is breathtaking, don't forget there are 2 craters up there, one does not have a barrier so be careful.

backpacking
8 months ago

south trail has larger and more creek crossings than north trail

The trail from Union reservoir to rock lake is a fairly easy hike. Not much of an elevation gain and it starts out in shady, wooded terrain. The trip to Elephant Lake and rock is the most pleasant part of the trip. As you circle around Elephant Rock you enter a burned out forest with lots of under growth and many downed trees. It is wide open space with no remarkable views; sunny and desolate. The trail is littered with downed trees that must be climbed over or circumvented. Rock lake is small and will one day be a meadow. It is not a destination lake - it is more of a lake you would notice while you were on the way to another, more beautiful location. The lake shore has many, many downed trees. There is no easy access to the shoreline (too filled with downed trees and muddy), which made getting drinking water difficult. The lake bottom is silty which makes wading/swimming a dirty affair. It is not a welcoming lake for swimming. We cut our stay here short, cut our losses and moved on to find other prettier and welcoming destinations. We will not be going back to Rock Lake.

KM to relief reservoir is a great destination hike. Can be a day hike for an intermediate hiker. Beautiful waterfalls and canyons make you forget the aggressive ascents. Beautiful lake view campsites. Waters cold and the fishing is good

backpacking
8 months ago

prepared to get muddy in the last mile to the lake. everything else was amazing.

hiking
8 months ago

It's a down out and up back trail.

The start was a little tricky because it passes through a posted private property area. Stay on the "road" and you're good.

Lost my camera between Wood lake and Pine Valley trail head message me if you found it jennmurphy@sbcglobal.net

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