Cascade Falls Trail

MODERATE 393 reviews

Cascade Falls Trail is a 1.4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Tahoma, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
1.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
236 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

snow

This is a great short, moderate/easy hike to a beautiful waterfall within Emerald Lake State Park on the West Shore of Lake Tahoe. The trailhead is located off of Highway 89 north of South Lake Tahoe across from Inspiration Point. There is a small parking area with limited parking. The trail navigates through forest and over stone steps. There are many vantage points with excellent views of Cascade Lake, Emerald Bay, and Lake Tahoe along the way. Although there is not a lot of elevation change, there are challenging spots along the trail with large rocks/small boulders to navigate. Once at the falls, it is a good place to eat lunch, relax, and take in the views. The surrounding large granite rock outcroppings are impressive. There are multiple pools you can put your feet in. This is one of the more popular hiking trails Emerald Bay State Park and parking fills up quickly. Make sure to get there early to secure a parking spot. The best time to see the falls is in spring/early summer when Cascade Creek is roaring from the snowmelt that feeds it.

hiking
10 hours ago

Great easy hike and not busy. Parking is limited at the trailhead, but is accessible if you're staying at the campgrounds.

hiking
12 hours ago

Very pretty hike with a nice scenery all the way. Also good hike for beginners that want to take a slightly more complicated path as its not very even but still easy and not too long.

hiking
15 hours ago

Beautiful views, waterfall reward. Nice to get the boots off to cool down your feet at the falls. Well marked trail. Worth the effort.

3 days ago

Outstanding hike. Moderate at times but overall a very doable hike. Multiple shady spots to relax and take a break on the longer uphills. Suggest hiking up the falls a bit as there are a lot of places to relax in the cool water and shade of trees but also going down to the edge of the falls for the great photo opportunity. Trail head on the return is poorly marked but it's not too difficult to find your way.

hiking
11 days ago

A beautiful hike! The day was perfect with blue skies and could see for miles. The view of Cascade Lake was breathtaking. The falls were still a great site to see despite from what we read that the water fall is much greater during the spring/early summer. Bring water and a snack/lunch to enjoy around the falls.

12 days ago

very nice trail.....if this fatboy Texan can do it......so can you !

hiking
16 days ago

Beautiful views of Cascade Lake and nice stone steps.

hiking
18 days ago

Great little trail for the whole family. During the summer months the parking can be quite scary, most of this is due to Emerald Bay overlook on the other side of the freeway. Saw a handful of parents with kids in backpacks.

hiking
25 days ago

Beautiful hike with great views of Cascade Lake and Lake Tahoe beyond. Trailhead parking area was full but no problem finding parking along street outside of the campground and only a short walk back to the trailhead. Would rate this as moderate for anyone with older joints due to the rocky trail. Trekking poles are a great help. This was a crowded trail - mentioned in local tourist news papers- so not one if you enjoy solitude along with your hike.

hiking
26 days ago

Beautiful views! Lots of traffic; even during the middle of the week. Pretty rocky in a few spots. Wear good shoes and pack plenty of water.

hiking
28 days ago

Leave early in the a.m. for a better chance of parking, What a great easy hike, rocky in the beginning with mild elevation change. The falls are a good place to dip your toes and eat your lunch. Great views.
We did Eagle Falls first then headed to Cascade.

hiking
29 days ago

Much of trail is rocky so need to be agile

1 month ago

Easy hike. Great for the kids.

hiking
1 month ago

It was a great hike. Took my 8 year old and while it was shorter, the hills made it a great workout. She made it just fine! Beautiful view, go early to avoid crowds.

1 month ago

Easy, lovely trail. Views of the lake and once you reach the falls you can get right up to them. Plenty of space to hang out by the falls and enjoy the views or even picnic.

Lovely early summer hike up a rocky steppe and along a rushing mountain stream, capped by a beautiful waterfall.

1 month ago

So awesome and surprisingly beautiful

1 month ago

Love all of the beautiful views on this trail!

hiking
1 month ago

We enjoyed the walk and the amazing views.
A bit rocky at times, walking sticks are very helpful.

hiking
1 month ago

A beautiful trail. Great views of the falls along the trails. We sat in the shade by the creek for a light snack. It was wonderful and invigorating.

1 month ago

Stunning views. Initially the rating said “easy” until we put in GPS, then it rated “moderate”.....more accurate. You are hiking up a mountain over boulders and rocks. The Falls are beautiful and it is worth the hike. Wear good hiking shoes and drink water.

hiking
1 month ago

short hike in after you pass small camp grounds you will see trails signs. Trail is easy to follow/ marked. Rocky, but not slipper in summer time. Views are absolutely breath taking. You can get in water and rocks in water are not extremely slippery either. LOTS of bugs!!! Wear spray!!! I had some service at Falls too for recording live feed.

hiking
1 month ago

Fairly easy and short hike with beautiful views of Cascade Lakes and exploring alongside Cascade Falls. Rocky sections but manageable - some narrow sections.

2 months ago

The view is amazing and not a hard hike at all

2 months ago

A fantastic Kid friendly hike! Like most hikes, wear appropriate foot wear. Our 7 and 9 year old had a great time and were able to vear off the trail a little to enjoy the area. There are some areas where you will need to use your hands a little, nothing major. Pack a lunch to relax at the falls area. Its beautiful!

2 months ago

Wouldn't say it's an easy trail as while quite short (1.4m/2.2km roundtrip) almost all of it is rocks and boulders. Don't wear flipflops. The views are breathtaking, a must-do/see

2 months ago

The views are amazing, and it isn't a long hike, but who ever called climbing the boulders in the path an easy hike... Some people aren't that tall!

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful trail; just watch where you step

2 months ago

This is one of the best short hikes in the Tahoe area. Big Bang for small amount of effort. Amazing views. We went later in the early evening and had it all to ourselves. Great views as sun fades in the west and colors hills with a red hue.

hiking
2 months ago

easy hike with lots of foot traffic. parked in the campgrounds near the trail head. the falls are awesome, lots of places to sit right by the water.

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