Bear Lakes and Round Lake Loop Trail

MODERATE 76 reviews
#2 of 26 trails in

Bear Lakes and Round Lake Loop Trail is a 4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Blairsden-Graeagle, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

4.0 miles
531 feet

dog friendly

kid friendly



nature trips


trail running





wild flowers


Plumas County might seem to have only three stoplights, but it has more than its fair share of great lakes to discover. An hour north of Truckee and a world away from the often busy Lake Tahoe traffic, the Lakes Basin is a tranquil escape full of beautiful lakes and great hiking opportunities. We've chosen ten mile loop trail which weaves around some of the prettiest lakes, provides some high ridgeline hiking with excellent vantage points and also links to a detour up the 7,812ft tall Mt. Ewell for those looking for even more challenges. Summer and early fall is the best time for a snow-free experience here in the Plumas National Forest, but this and similar routes can also be tackled on snowshoes as Gold Lake Highway is plowed throughout the winter. We've also provided a link in this guide to road conditions if you need to check winter access for yourself. Elevation Gain: - 2,400ft (from 6,300 - 7,500ft)

26 minutes ago

A really beautiful hike all the way around! There are 5 lakes along the way, tons of butterflies and wild flowers everywhere! This hike looks simple, but really pushes you. It’s well marked and we had no trouble finding our way when crossing other paths! Great for all ages!

4 days ago

Perfect day hike. Has amazing views, lots of lakes, and is not too strenuous. Great for dogs, mine was off leash the entire time.

8 days ago

Great hike. the wildflowers were incredible and the dogs loved all the lakes. If you bring dogs hike the loop counterclockwise so they are headed downhill on the dry stretch.

10 days ago

Keep going up to the PCT where you will see amazing view of Sierra Buttes! it's too bad we can't backpack at these lakes but hop on over to Jamison and Wade to set up camp and explore all these lakes.

17 days ago

Such a beautiful trail with views and lakes galore! Easy access and a clear trail. Wild flowers and butterflies are in full effect.

My new favorite hike!

20 days ago

Fantastic hike showing off some beautiful lakes and scenery. We got a little lost once we got the the mining site and ended up hiking up the mountain and spending some time on the Pacific Crest Trail. It was a good mistake though. If you take the little detour that is at times steep, it's well worth it. It has a beautiful view of the lakes on this trail and some others ones in the distances.

28 days ago

Gold lake highway is Not Plowed through the Winter. Ever. No snow shoeing on this hike unless you snow mobile in.

1 month ago

Great weather and views. Dogs loved it. Some snow patches still but definitely manageable.

1 month ago

This is an amazing loop that brings you to all the beautiful lakes in the area. Big Bear Lake and Silver Lake were among my favorites. Be sure to check out Long Lake too for a breath taking view.

I told my girlfriend to bring shoes or hiking boots, but of course she insisted on flip flops and she was still able to complete the 4 miles. In late May the water is bearable to swim in and very refreshing after each stop. Nothing can beat the snow capped mountains surrounding the shimmering bodies of water. It is a truly magnificent area.

1 month ago

Each lake more amazing than the one before. Can do it as an all day trip with stops to picnic, fly fish, swim(water was very cold). Small patches of snow but passable.

Perfection. One of my favorites. Gets a bit crowd in summer though. Parking extremely difficult! Beware of naked sunbathers! They are out when sun is shining.

6 months ago

Great hike! A few snow areas that are iced over and you need have the right foot gear with you. A few trails are under a few inches of water, but you can maneuver around most of them.

7 months ago

This trail is beautiful. However, as of Nov 25, 2017, we found several patches of the trail under snow. This made it hard to follow the trail. But this trail is breathtaking.

7 months ago

i think anywhere out here in this area is gorgeous, all trails worth it! we encountered quite a bit of snow Nov 25,2017 post holing occasionally but it's still worth it!

8 months ago

Got a light dusting of snow this morning. Trail was still easy to navigate. Stunning views. Hard to beat.

9 months ago

Great trail. No major inclines or declines with good variety of scenery. Completed in late september with some snow on the ground with a group 25 people ages ranging from 6-70 year old hikers without any problems.

10 months ago

Great trail. Amazing sights and wonderful lakes!

11 months ago

Wonderful hike! Beautiful views at every turn. Great for 2 active Border Collies with lots of water to drink and swim in.

11 months ago

Great views and varied terrain. Highly recommend!

Monday, July 17, 2017

OMG. Thanks to nature my family and I had a blast. This was all of our first time hiking. The trails were beautifully maintained and was an amazing place to hike with dogs and kids. We have a large family of 5 and we brought our 2 hyper dogs (off leash) and my 3 young children. The trails were very easily visible to see everyone in our group and it was perfect for the kids and dogs to roam and run. The trail was wide enough and very comfortable for people who are not comfortable with the heights. There were quite a few people and other dogs as well as kids but everyone was extremely friendly and patient when we were slacking and not moving fast enough. In some spots there were a few creeks that you either had to walk through or on rocks to get over but it is extremely safe for everyone. It was gorgeous and absolutely breathtaking. I did add some pictures of the paths and views. There are tons of butterflies and toward the end there were a small family of deer. There were tons of signs so you don't get lost and it gives you many options on where to go. I would highly recommend anyone wanting to do this hike. By the way there were tons of elderly people so my point is, if they can do it so can you. My husband and I are also obese and it was perfect for us too

Sunday, October 09, 2016

went the counter-clockwise route and it was so worth it! beautiful hike with places to stop and take in the views. i encountered other people but had most of the hike to myself. definitely recommend this loop if you stay in the area!

Tuesday, September 06, 2016


Saturday, September 03, 2016

Have done this one a few times, great hike beautiful views.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Very rewarding hike with frequent views and inviting lakes for a swim or picnic spot. If you are doing the loop, I recommend going out of the Round Lake Trailhead/Gold Lake Lodge and going clockwise. It's 1.5 miles to Round Lake and then lake after lake the ready of the way. a total of about 5 miles. If you're looking for a shorter version, go out of Long Lake Trailhead, it's called the Bear Lakes Trailhead from that location. Lots of options from there.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Still had snow late in May, and a few spots to cross with water, so you may want hiking boots. Overall, one of the better hikes we've done with small kids, because you get the amazing benefit of lake after lake without a huge hike or big elevation gain. Less than a mile in is Big Bear Lake, and if you leave the trail to get down to the lake, there's lots of spots to have a quiet picnic.

The only drawback is coming in from Gold Lake Lodge, the trail signs are missing or damaged, and the trail is a bit hard to follow. There's another way in via long lake. Or, just be careful.

Sunday, November 01, 2015

My families favorite hike so far! The terrain is not bad at all and the scenery is amazing! I would definitely recommend this hike!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

A neat little day hike for the family. I would rate this as an easy level as it does not have much elevation difference and is relatively short. Great for kids and dogs. I agree with a previous reviewer to suggest going counterclockwise. On this hike, you will be greeted by several lakes including Big Bear Lake, Little Bear Lake, Cub Lake, Long Lake, Silver Lake, Round Lake and Veronica Lake (although this one was pretty dried up :( ). Our GPS showed that we hiked 5.4 miles.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

A great, short hike with lots of water for my dog to swim in and stay cool. Beautiful, clear lakes. Nice variation of terrain.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Excellent. If you don't plan to hike the whole loop, recommend you go counterclockwise. This way you'll see all the lakes within the first two miles. It's also an easier hike than the other side.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Beautiful yet challenging!

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