Blue Canyon Lake

HARD 39 reviews
#2 of 15 trails in

Blue Canyon Lake is a 3.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Pinecrest, California that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from July until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
3.2 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,194 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

snow

Beautiful hike near the top of Sonora Pass. All uphill on the way while enjoying wildflowers, mountains, creek, and waterfalls. The lake is just gorgeous. Clear and turquoise in color.

4 days ago

This trail is easily one of my top trails to visit again. Just did this trail yesterday and the view was amazing. The hike might be short but man it was tough, but totally worth it. Recommend 5/5 stars!

21 days ago

took about 1.25 hours to hike to the lake, some loose uphill but not bad at all. the lake was beautiful, some bees were around but not enough to disrupt the view. 10/10 would recommend!

hiking
1 month ago

Amazing! Great hike not for the beginner. So beautiful the water is so blue, along the trail you’ll see waterfalls, wild flowers and beautiful rock formations. I’m ready to do it again!

backpacking
2 months ago

gorgeous hike with wildflowers and a big green lake. the stream crossings are super manageable this time of year but be aware of high risk for forest fires. we backpacked in and had the whole lake to ourselves. dog friendly!

hiking
2 months ago

Trail was absolutely breathtaking. So many beautiful wild flowers. A few very challenging areas where climbing or crossing creeks required the help of friends. Definitely worth the challenge!

hiking
3 months ago

I went to Blue Ridge Lake today. if you don't mind a little high elevation and a little bit of rock scrambling this is an absolutely beautiful Trail flowers were everywhere however I will warn you to parking lot is fairly small. this off limits the amount of people going out to the lake which is nice because it's not a big late but it is stunning against the mountains in the snow.

3 months ago

Beautiful Hike!! Struggled with hiking in the high elevation but so worth it.

hiking
3 months ago

Did this hike a year ago and I’m so excited to do it again! The views and geologic history of the canyon fascinate me and the lake itself was so serene and peaceful. I recommend this to everyone I meet!

3 months ago

Blue Canyon Lake is a stunning turquoise blue - worth the climb! Please be prepared for many stream crossings and getting your feet wet this time of year(June/July); trusty hiking boots are a must on this slippery gravel/talus trail. This trail is not for the faint of heart as there are some sections that require light scrambling. I don't recommend this hike for beginners primarily due to the stream crossings, scrambling sections and the ~1200ft gain in a short 1.8 miles. Also, the trail is not well-marked with signage and there are a few deceiving pseudo trails - follow the cairns and you'll be just fine! With the right preparation and determination, I do think anyone could ultimately tackle this breathtaking trail. Please be safe and always pack out what you pack in. Enjoy!

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike, very steep and some areas of the trail was under snow. No markings or signs of a trail head at the start. It appears on Topo as being in the Emigrant Wilderness but only a broken post remains a short way in. The trail is not always clear and a few alt routes to get around obstacles were present if observant. Lake was about 75% frozen 6/24/18. Enjoyable and remote despite its closeness to 108.

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked this today, there were a couple very manageable stream crossings but we did have to take off our boots for one of them. After one of the stream crossings, there is a false trail leading off to the left that eventually falls away; we put rocks across the path and built a few cairns to mark the right trail. I'd suggest a topo map to help make sure you're on the right track.

4 months ago

Went yesterday. I would give it at least a week. These are the first hot days on the pass and the watershed made the creeks dangerous at best and snow bridges are a no go. We passed 2 groups that had turned around bc they werent able to find a safe crossing. Still lots of ice/summer snow covering the trail so wear waterproof boots. By the time we hiked up to a point that we would have been able to wade across(.75mi further) we ran out of time. Bummer because we were really looking forward to the destination. We'll be giving it another go after the snow and rivers work things out a little.

4 months ago

Went there yesterday. There is a wide and pretty deep Creek you have to cross at the beginning of the trail.no bridge I could see. and there is tons of snow on the trail as well currently

10 months ago

Awesome trail. Good up hill the way there. The lake is beautiful. I did it 2 weeks ago and the snow wasn't bad at all. A little here and there. The trail was pretty easy to stay on.

11 months ago

A little icy going up and over today. Beautiful, beautiful.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Went last Saturday...a few tough stretches due to ice and snow, but worth it! Absolutely beautiful!

hiking
Tuesday, October 03, 2017

This trail is beautiful from start to finish. Even the drive to the turnoff is gorgeous. The trailhead is at a turnout- and really THE first turnout just beneath the 9000ft elevation sign on Highway 108 to Sonora Pass. It doesn't immediately stand out but becomes noticeable once you head down a short hill and cross a stream. The trail is mostly easy to follow but there are a few rockier areas where you could lose the path. The lake is beautiful and surrounded by majestic rocky mountains. I would rate this as moderate-advanced hiking due to elevation and a few short but more challenging stretches with loose footing.

hiking
Thursday, September 07, 2017

I love this hike. The wildflowers were still in full force, nice amount of elevation gain for as short as the hike is. The epic blue of the lake is stunning and changes as the clouds pass over. Can't beat the smell of high Sierra air. Lil piece of heaven.

hiking
Sunday, June 25, 2017

Must do this hike every year! Popular but not too crowded, as immediate creek crossing & steep incline discourage the faint-of-heart. Power on past! Gorgeous scenery & stunning lake await you!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

AMAZING!!!!!

Saturday, May 14, 2016

I live in the Sonora area so I am always exploring the pass and the surrounding Sierra Nevada, but I have to say this is one of my favorite hikes. It's uphill the entire way until you reach the lake. During a warm summers day the lake is an aqua blue, if you chose to go on a cloudy day the lake will be a deep green. Either way it's absolutely stunning. There's a beautiful creek to follow as well and many wild flowers.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

We completed this hike in August of 2014. Instead of starting above the falls we crossed Deadman Creek below the falls and worked our way up to the notch to the right high above the falls. This route kept us right along the creek most of the was. It also required several creek crossings. Lots of bear scat and other animal signs the entire hike. The lake is an amazing shade of blue. Returning along the more traveled route provides breath taking views. This is one that definitely goes into the "I'll do it again" bucket.

hiking
Monday, August 04, 2014

Beautiful hike near the top of Sonora Pass. All uphill on the way while enjoying wildflowers, mountains, creek, and waterfalls. The lake is just gorgeous. Clear and turquoise in color.

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