hiking

views

dog friendly

forest

walking

wildlife

nature trips

wild flowers

birding

trail running

lake

kid friendly

mountain biking

camping

river

snowshoeing

backpacking

dogs on leash

off road driving

horseback riding

waterfall

fishing

no dogs

backpacking
6 hours ago

We headed out Friday morning and found a nice camp spot at the middle lake. Beautiful. However, by Saturday morning crowds of people came pouring into the lake. We were a bit disappointed w/our fellow trail mates. We had unfriendly hikers walking through our campsite early Sat. morning. We watched as one groups dog pooped in the lake right were we were filtering water. We decided to leave and the trail was so crowded that it took a long time to get down. Only one small creek is running near bottom of trail. A lot of folks were running out of water half way up the trail. We watched several people carry out or push tired kids and dogs down the trail. If you like crowds this is the trail for you. If your looking for solitude or serious trail folk stay away or come on a weekday.

hiking
9 hours ago

It's an amazing hike, but bring your sunscreen, most of it is in the full sun.

backpacking
11 hours ago

How are the trail conditions now? Looking to head up next Sunday and I'm wondering if Granite Lake is accessible.

hiking
13 hours ago

hiking
13 hours ago

hiking
14 hours ago

Loved this hike yesterday! It is no joke in terms of the uphill climb for the first half, but the beautiful lakes are totally worth the great workout. The rocks were a little challenging at times, but not a big deal for me or my dad - though some folks on the trail were complaining about them. Do swim in the middle lake - made all the difference in terms of feeling refreshed for the way back down - and as long as you swim in the top layer, the water isn't that cold. Lots of beautiful wildflowers, crazy awesome views of the lakes. Bring plenty of water, sunscreen and snacks. Enjoy!

hiking
14 hours ago

We loved this trail! It had everything we wanted, great wildflowers, dog friendly, not too strenuous, shady, sparsely populated. but we heard about a waterfall, and couldn't find it. maybe next time.

hiking
15 hours ago

rock climbing
16 hours ago

First Things First: Before you come here, consider your vehicle. I don't recommend sedans make the drive down to the bridge where you park and start the hike or swim. Road is very eroded in lots of spots, very dusty, and will mess up alignment on anything smaller than 4x4. See other reviews for reference. If you park at the top, no guarantees on not getting ticket and it is a 2.5 mile walk to the bottom.

My ultimate favorite swimming hole north of Sacramento. Lots of large rocks to jump off into the water (ALWAYS examine water depths first, as they can change throughout the season!)

The water here is VERY clear in the spring and summer months. Bring goggles for a visual treat, can see all the way down.

Best time to go is probably spring and summer. In the fall, the water levels tend to purge down too far.

Note: Pay to park is $10 last I checked but bring a few extra bucks just in case it goes up. There is a payment deposit post; Put cash in envelope and fill out required vehicle information, then deposit in box. Some folks try not to pay but I recommend doing it. Have seen people get ticketed when rangers come through, and I'm pretty sure they come through daily.

Pack List:
Sunscreen
Sunglasses
Goggles
Parking money (Cash $10+)
All-Wheel Drive
Trail shoes, water, and long pants for hiking.

hiking
16 hours ago

hiking
16 hours ago

The Trail:
Be advised, this trail is not for the faint of heart. Very steep, often constant and sharp declines in elevation going down and back up. I wasn't in the best of shape as far as endurance goes when I braved this trail but I was still somewhat athletic and this trail wore me out cold. Had to carry my 70 pound dog out the last half mile because he gave out before we did (he was fine, just pooped and stopped walking). Trail is mostly clear, but can be overgrown in some areas.

The scenery:
Gorgeous elevation scenery as you go down and up the trail. Great panoramic photography potential at the top and certain viewpoints along the way. Once you reach the river it is beautiful. Lots of rocks to climb on. I climbed up the bridge at the bottom (do so at your own risk) to get some good photos. Overall a very visually-appealing trail.

Precautions:
Bring LOTS of water. Camelbaks of 2 liters or more if you are out of shape are recommended, you will drain lots of water climbing this trail. We brought three large Nalgene bottles for three people, and one for the dog, and depleted ours by the time we got to the bottom. Dog had water the whole way but we had to go without coming back up because we weren't well prepared.
Wear proper trail shoes (not flip flops like I did, though I had no idea what we were getting into. Boy did my calves hurt the next day).
Additionally, bear in mind it isn't uncommon to encounter horseback riders on this trail. We passed two riders coming up while we were going down, horses were friendly and indifferent, but if you aren't sure how your dogs will react to horses, please mind your leash manners. Not a whole lot of room to move pets out of horsebackers' way, so a leash is a must!

Recommendations:
Some areas off the trail can be explored but if you're hiking with with a pet, they may need to be hoisted. Something to keep in mind when hiking with large dogs.
Watch out for horse poop.

Pack List:
Mosquito Repellant
Sunscreen
Swimsuit/Trunks
Climbing gloves for any rocks you might want to climb at the bottom.
2L+ Camelbak and 2 liters of water in bottles at LEAST.
Leash (if hiking with pets)
Good trail climbing shoes.

hiking
17 hours ago

hiking
17 hours ago

trail running
22 hours ago

Was great not to hilly but fairly technical. Great trail to work on time.