Explore the most popular hiking trails in Tahoe 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.

Good easy hike up. Lots of colors to see on a fall day. Weekday was nice, not too much traffic.

hiking
2 days ago

Very fun, beautiful and adventurous trail. It is rated easy but I wouldn’t say this trail is easy as some might expect it to be. Personally I would rate this moderate. There are steep and rough inclines/declines. As someone in a lower post said, I wouldn’t recommend for small children. Also note that the road to get to the trail is pretty rough. We did take it in a smaller car and made it through fine, just take it slow, you may also have to get out to move some of the bigger rocks. Other than that amazing trail.

walking
2 days ago

* pretty, uncrowded in october.
* bring what water you need.
* lovely views!
* forested, shady, peaceful, wonderful walk.

amazing hike...the views from the tower are just beautiful. steady climb to get there but not to bad. i would say depending on your dog whether it would be comfortable for them or not up the stairs. mine made it fine but i held her harness to help her. this has to be my favorite hike for the views alone. can't wait to do it again.

walking
2 days ago

Very crowded and when I hike I like to get away from people. I’ve lived in Truckee since ‘91 and have never done this trail as I had heard it was too busy. Rocky parts and uphill but not a difficult hike. Beautiful views! 2 hours and 12 minutes to do entire loop.

Mostly in the trees, striking view of the lake from the top. You can continue on to Martin peak if you want.

My wife and I walked this trail with our dogs. It wasn't a tough walk, but the trail surface changes a lot so its worthy of hiking boots, and the trail was easy to find and follow all the way to the falls, and who doesn't like walking along a river. It's pretty even late in the year and one area had a lot of wild grapes that were delicious. The creek size waterfall was flowing well and cascaded about 30ft down the side of the hill, so mission accomplished. We followed the trail for about a 100 yards past the falls but it got pretty tight and then became hard to follow so we decided to head back. It was a pleasant walk and we even saw a bear about a 1/4 mile from the trailhead on the way back, and he wanted nothing to do with us. I would say we might do it again in the early spring but at that time of year the creek may make it hard to get access the waterfall.

The trail is pretty steep for most of the hike. I would rate that part hard. The quality of the trail is good though.

hiking
3 days ago

*There are some lengthy steep and rocky parts of the trail
*Great workout
*No water sources so bring plenty of water for dogs
*A lot of exposed/unshaded areas of the trail
*Took about 3.5 hours to complete the entire loop with several breaks
*Well signed trail; hard to get lost
*Nice views (lake, summit, trees, etc.)

hiking
3 days ago

Moderately rough road for 6 miles to get to trailhead—glad for the clearance on our Highlander. Trail moderately easy, but as others have noted, it’s easy to lose your way a bit in the rocky spots. Surprised there weren’t more cairns in those areas. Met a few backpackers on the trail, but had lovely Salmon Lake to ourselves—a treat on a gorgeous, autumn Sunday! Will do again, and continue to Loch Leven Lakes. Be aware, trail starts at about 6,500, so if you’re coming from sea level, you may feel the altitude, even though the trail isn’t hard.

Great hike with great views. Starts as a dirt road, at the big sign you take a left onto the trail. You can make this into a nice loop (adds maybe a mile and adds no elevation gain) by continuing onto the castle mountain trail a bit and then taking the pacific crest trail back down. The pacific crest trail is a very sharp left turn, easy to miss.

It is a difficult trail coming out but the rewards of the swimming holes at the bottom are worth it!
Just take a lot of water with you and I don’t recommend doing in high temps and much of the trail is uncovered.

Delightful

hiking
6 days ago

Wide, paved road. No obvious trailhead from the road. You just figure out a place to park alongside the road in. We are average fitness and 60ish years old; we just took it slow and took breaks so that our lungs could catch up. A good short hike for the first day at a high altitude! Also: amazing views!

Started our hike at the west end of tunnel #6, just west of the ski area. Can’t imagine hand drilling and blasting with black powder and nitroglycerin. This tunnel system was in use until 1993 until the tracks were moved south. Great, historic hike. The graffiti varies from totally amateur to absolutely beautiful professional. Sad that it’s there at all, but a fact of life. Well worth the time. Take a flashlight-it’s very dark is some areas.

I was in the Tahoe City area for a couple days and decided to go for a hike. This trail was a great challenge and with beautiful views. The information from prior reviews was helpful in making my way through the granite section. The marks on the rocks were helpful in making my way.

I try to take anyone who visits and wants a great hike with lots to see. History and great views everywhere. Fall is the best time with the views of the trees changing.

hiking
8 days ago

9/29/18 Arrive early to beat the crowds! Quite stunning views and clear alpine lakes. Lovely to hear nothing but the occasional fish jump, duck quack, and wind through the trees! On our way back we encountered multiple large groups heading up. So get here before 9 or go on a weekday!

6/22/18 Bumpy backcountry roads, forest trails, mountain views, and clear alpine pools to dip in. nothing better (except less people but what can you do). Friendly skinny dippers at least

6/8/18 - Stunning. Quite lovely trail with so much to see. We did not want to leave Fordyce Falls as it was so pretty and relaxing. Water was far too cold to swim in but our feet enjoyed a dip

Great! Especially hitting it just right for wildflowers! Views are magnificent. Good workout.

Nice and easy.

Great hike. Weather was amazing, and nice people on the trail.

walking
9 days ago

Great trail for dogs - some uphill elevation climbs but mostly flat. Beautiful alpine forest and meadows. Freeway noise drops off after the first mile when the trail changes direction.

it's a great trail considering the length, difficulty and what you see on the way. there's enough views on the way to the lakes where u won't feel bored. i doubt it's good for winter time, the trail might get covered by snow. btw, the trail ends at the last lake, u might need to explore before finishing the trail if u wanna find other lakes

This trail is one of the best I’ve been to. I’m a beginner hiker and went with an experienced hiker who had done the trail once before. It’s not marked in certain spots so it’s good to go with someone you know. Making it to Penner Lake, starting at Carr Lake took us about 5 hours to complete walking at normal pace and only stopping to take in the view and having lunch once we got to Penner. I’d rate the terrain as medium with mild inclines once you get closer to Penner it gets a little steep, but nothing too bad. It’s a great hike in October! Not a lot of people on Monday (Columbus Day!) but we were glad to find a hunter on the trail and about three other small groups of hikers. One thing I learned here is you can hike, backpack in and camp, camp at the campgrounds, bring a pet, come for the day or the night, it will not disappoint. Every single step provides a new scene and a new Lake to see. Breathtaking views. And it didn’t cost us anything but fuel and the food we brought for snacks and lunch. I can’t wait to come back and camp here. We did the entire 6 miles in one afternoon and we’re pretty tired by the time we reached the parking lot. Stopped in Grass-valley at Big A’s for early dinner-perfect ending for a perfect day hike trip!

hiking
9 days ago

I hiked 5 miles around the first Lake. Nice day.
Lots of views to the local ski areas, houses when coming back lots of construction noises.
The lake area was quiet and nice.

A very strenuous hike to the actual Euchre Bar and back out of the canyon. Absolute solitude with a gorgeous suspension bridge over the North Fork American, occasional views of the undammed river canyon (and Generation Gap whitewater run). Bring lots of water, sunscreen and a good meal.

A really nice hike. Note that at the initial trailhead from the gate you take the right “road/trail”. The road to the left leads somewhere else. Not too many people. Quite a few dogs, if that matters to you. There is a LOT of fire road to walk on. If you’re there on the weekend you will likely encounter several trucks. But, it’s beautiful and a breath of fresh air, literally.

Quite windy today, but beautiful skies and miles and miles of visibility. Trail is in good condition, although a bit loose going up the last 3/4 mile (all walkable if careful)

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