Big Meadow to Round Lake

MODERATE 61 reviews
#13 of 78 trails in

Big Meadow to Round Lake is a 6.1 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near South Lake Tahoe, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
6.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1259 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly

birding

fishing

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

forest

lake

views

wild flowers

wildlife

backpacking
8 days ago

Steep for us novice backpackers! Especially the switchbacks before the meadow. But short. A few wildflowers left, no mud, pretty. The meadow is gorgeous. Hiked in shorts and tshirts, just now getting chilly.

hiking
20 days ago

Excellent trail with lots to see. The entire family, including the dog, enjoyed it very much. The way in is a bit tuff with all the uphill but well worth if when reaching Round Lake. The hike back much easier and faster given it's mostly down hill.

hiking
21 days ago

hiking
25 days ago

mountain biking
1 month ago

Tough Mountain Bike trail. Lots of technical climbing to start. Then turns into a good ride.

1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Round Lake is gorgeous in mid-afternoon. At the beach where the trail meets the lake, we saw chipmunks, dragonflies, and a few humans at the far end of the lake. As Madame says, turning right at that point will show you more lovely views, including a cove with the world's cutest island. Turning left, you soon see some hefty rocks that must have fallen from the cliff above.

Wide variety of plants both at the lake and on the trail. Big Meadow is probably better in early summer. Trail is mostly shaded except for Big Meadow and Round Lake.

We met several dogs and one mountain biker. Horses had been there too. My teenagers handled the climb from CA 89 to Big Meadow slightly better than I did; we used almost a quart of water per person. Construction work on that part of CA 89 finished while we were hiking!

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Nice hike. Would consider the rating accurate as most of it is at an incline until you get to the meadow then a little ways until your almost to round lake which is a decent decent down. Shady enough to cool off if you need to take a rest. Saw lots of people but was alone enough to enjoy some solitude. Saw bikers hikers and horseback riders. The lake is so pretty. I really enjoyed sitting and reading there. Only thing that was sort of a bummer was construction going on today 8/9 so for the first portion you could hear traffic and road work going on which takes away from the elements of nature but once you get to the meadow it's fine. Great views once you get to the lake I recommend walking to the right when you get there you get some great views you would realize are there.

backpacking
1 month ago

Very fun. Took the whole family. Kids loved it.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike, excellent views: creek alongside the trail, awesome meadows, and a very pretty alpine lake. It starts at the trailhead off 89, then cross over 89. Trails starts off fairly steep about a mile before arriving at the large meadow. The meadow is large and beautiful with a nice creek crossing and a shady tree at the other side. From there it's a 2.5-3 mile hike to Round lake. Before getting to the lake you'll climb a steep portion for 1/2-1 mile then down a switchback then another climb before a slight decline just before you see the lake.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

Nice trail with some incline. Lake was beautiful, took a swim but the water was really cold. Definitely bring bug spray.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

backpacking
2 months ago

Had a great trip, easy 3 mile hike in nice and shady for the most part, very little snow on the path, the mosquitoes are insane up there so make sure you bring lots of DEET! tried my luck at fishing but did not catch anything. still does get a little chilly at night but i was fine with my 40deg bag and a one man tent.
The view is incredible and there is a couple of nesting Bald Eagles that just scream freedom!