Caples Lake to Emigrant Lake Trail

MODERATE 43 reviews
#10 of 77 trails in

Caples Lake to Emigrant Lake Trail is a 7.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Markleeville, California that features a lake 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
7.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1069 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

walking

forest

lake

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

Directions from Sacramento: Travel east of Highway 50, turn south onto Scenic Byway 49, turn east onto Highway 88. Then turn north off Highway 88 at the Cal Trans Maintenance Station near Caples Lake. Continue for two miles to Schneiders Cow Camp where parking is available. Follow the 4-wheel drive road for 1/2 mile to the trailhead.

hiking
2 days ago

Nice hike to a very cool little lake.

6 days ago

Great Hike. Most of the hike is near water.

hiking
9 days ago

hiking
12 days ago

hiking
12 days ago

12 days ago

hiking
20 days ago

1 month ago

Embarked on this yesterday and it was beautiful. There are still lots of downed trees across the trail and ice patches that make keeping on track challenging. Got lost a few times. Had to cross the river twice - there are clear signs where this is necessary. The first was difficult. The second was beyond my comfort level so I didn't make it all the way to the lake. Willingness to get feet wet and hiking poles is helpful as much of the trail is a stream! The wild flowers were bright and others said there will be even more in a week or two.

Park at the Caples Lake spillway along Hwy 88. The trail head is well marked and there are bathrooms. No fee to park but arrive early as it fills up.

hiking
1 month ago

I must be the only dork to follow the directions to the trailhead on this page. I always use a topo map on my hikes but this time I didn't. I just took for granted the directions and reviews listed for this hike. I definitely didn't have any problems getting to Schneiders Cow Camp but I couldn't figure out why we were on the other side of Hwy 88 and Caples Lake. But, I was determine to follow these directions. We kept wondering, "Why aren't we following Caples? When are we going to cross the hwy?" Well, after about 2 hrs of a beautiful hike on snowmobile/quad trails to the town of Strawberry, we turned around. But, the actual trailhead Caples to Emigrant Lake is right off of Hwy 88. West side of Caples Lake, almost across the trailhead for Lake Margaret. We will try this hike another day soon. With a map! :)

1 month ago

We followed the trail along Chaples lake with ease. But when we tried to head uphill to immigrant lake, we could not find the trail. We tried for over 2 hours. Too many fallen trees, debris, streams from snow
melt, and mounds of snow covering the trail. Tried to follow the old slash marks in the tree trunks, but still got lost. Better to wait until all the snow melts and if you do succeed, please mark the trail.

2 months ago

5 months ago

beautiful summer wildflowers

hiking
10 months ago

10 months ago

great hike!!

hiking
11 months ago

Very nice little hike to Emigrant. I did it in the middle of summer and there was a spot of snow I went through but the back of the lake and the mountains behind were covered and beautiful. In high water years there is a creek or 2 to ford.

hiking
11 months ago

Great Hike,
Even packing heavy only took 4 hours out and back. My Garmin shows 8.7 miles.
Nice trail. I"ll try to go back in the winter with Snow shoes

hiking
11 months ago

First time on this trail yesterday. It's wonderful and the 8 miles in and out where worth it. Emigrant Lake did not disappoint with its quiet views. Will definitely put this hike on our list.

hiking
11 months ago

11 months ago

First two miles hugs tight to Caples lake then a gradual decent up to Emigrant lake. This hike is rated moderate but really falls closer to easy. No real intense climbing but the gradual climb does go for the last mile or so. Highly recommend for those transitioning from easy to moderate. Make sure to look around from time to time as hidden sights can be hard to see through the trees. Nice and shady! Eight miles of beauty!

Saturday, August 13, 2016