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China Cove Trail Loop is a 3.2 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Truckee, California that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 3.2 mi Elevation gain 78 ft Route type Loop

Dogs on leash

Kid friendly

Cross country skiing

Hiking

Nature trips

Snowshoeing

Walking

Bird watching

Running

Beach

Forest

Lake

Partially paved

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Fee

Description
Waypoints (5)
Contact
Tips

This easy stroll around the lakeside and through areas of forest is an ideal place to bring young kids, and also makes a great location for your first snowshoe adventure. Please note there is a $10 parking fee.

Official Site - Donner Memorial State Park http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=503

- A fee is payable for the use of the parking lot and entry to the Emigrant Trail Museum. An hour at the museum will teach you about the history of the area including the Donner party, the Native Americans and the building of the nearby transcontinental railroad. - Some free parking may be available just West of the park entrance, depending on snow removal conditions. - The State Park operates a 154 site campground during summer months and a day-use area by the lake for picnics, fishing and beach activities.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (366)
Photos (219)
Recordings (348)
Completed (590)
P Kuo
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Hiking
View P's Recording
Sergio Manzo
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Hiking
View Sergio's Recording
Belle Chen
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Hiking

Busy but scenic

View Belle's Recording
Radhika Kunte
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Hiking

The trail starts off by the lake and then takes you through campgrounds. Well paved but can get busy.

View Radhika's Recording
Chelsie Jensen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 16, 2020
HikingNo shade

I took my 4 year old daughter on this trail today. The trail itself wasn’t that busy, but it goes right through the day use area of the lake, and the shores of the lake were pretty crowded. It was flat the whole way, which was what I was looking for, but as other reviews stated, this was more like 4 miles, and the trail dead-ends into the road at a campground, then you have to walk the rest of the way on the road. The trail is not well marked, so I had to keep checking the map to make sure I was walking in the right direction. It probably would have been better to turn around at the end of the lake. With as beautiful as the surrounding area is, I wouldn’t do this hike again.

Gurbinder Kalkat
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 11, 2020
HikingNo shadeRocky
View Gurbinder's Recording
Lauren Fitts
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 10, 2020
Hiking

Make sure to read the reviews of this trail and download the trail map! There were no signs directing you where to go. The reviews really helped guide my wife and I to the right route. When you figure out where to go, the trail is easy and gorgeous!

Erin McKenna
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Hiking

Nice and easy.We parked on Cold Stream behind the campground, near a pond because the parking lot was full for the 4th of July. Good steady. trail with mix of forest and beach. Trail was well marked.

View Erin 's Recording
Makanani M
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HikingOver grownScramble
View Makanani's Recording
Aaron Palm
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Views of lake are great. The last third of the trail is along a road.

Bert R
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJune 29, 2020
Hiking

The first part of the trail is along the lake and pretty, the rest isn’t as nice and a lot on the road. If we did it again, I would just walk back along the lake. Also it was more like 4 miles.

Marina L.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 28, 2020
Hiking

Beautiful easy walk along the lake and campgrounds for all ages and all level of skills . A lot of really big rocks. Highly recommend it for families with kids.

View Marina's Recording
Jen Fisk
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Hiking

Lots of people, not super clear or marked but beautiful views. Vehicle traffic often, definitely keep dogs leashed!

View Jen's Recording
Michele Werlang
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Hiking

Beautiful hike to do with family. I highly recommend it!

Monica Fish
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HikingBugs
View Monica's Recording
Taylor Thurlow
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Hiking

Awesome flat for preg wife. Would be fun to bbq or camp at split rock campground. Fun lil lakes to explore later.

View Taylor's Recording
Ashley Petkus
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great trail. very clean. beautiful views.

Oriana Tiell
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Hiking

Awesome trail for an easy family hike! It’s perfectly groomed, but there are nooks to explore as well.

View Oriana's Recording
Karina Camacho
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 15, 2020
Hiking

Very easy walk along the lake. Park on the side of the road. Don’t follow the little loop at the start on the lakeside of this map. Just keep following the main walkway through the campsite along the lake. Someone recommended we skip the loop into the forest so we just turned around going along the lake. Great views!

Anthony Damaschino
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 4, 2020
Hiking

A very nice picturesque flat trail. The first part runs through the forest, then along the coastline of Donner Lake, and then more of a fire trail through the park. Second half of the hike through the park although pretty, isn’t as beautiful as the first half. One recommendation is to go out and back instead of cutting through the fire road and the paved roads on the second half of the trail. Nice easy flat hike for kids and people of all ages.

View Anthony's Recording
Francine Coker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 22, 2020
Hiking

Dog friendly but need to pack out poop(more people need to do this). A little tricky with some snow in winter. You can hear the highway at start/end of trial. With campgrounds near by, this would be extremely busy during summer.

View Francine's Recording
Shawn Gutierrez-Patrick
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HikingSnow
View Shawn's Recording
Michel Sherman
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Snowshoeing

Jan. 18, 2020. After an intense day of cross-country skiing at Tahoe Donner XC Ski Resort, I snowshoed a 3-mile loop of this trail for some pleasure and exercise, and I got both. I've snowshoed nearby Castle Peak and other difficult areas, but if your body wants a pleasant break from hard-core activity, I highly recommend this place. The visitor center and museum are fascinating. Your Waypoints and Tips and map are all accurate.

Stacy Moffitt
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HikingSnow

Fun entry-level snowshoe excursion.

View Stacy's Recording
Holly Tretten
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Hiking

In the fall or winter this walk is a treat. Still a little busy, but less so than summer. The perfect walk for our old dog.

Jason Mead
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HikingSnow
View Jason's Recording
Francesca Guiducci
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We didn’t do the entire loop. It was a nice and relaxing trail.

View Francesca's Recording
Amy Ranker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarOctober 4, 2019
Hiking

Easy dog friendly jaunt. All flat, groomed trails/roads. Nice lake views and good swimming for dogs and people.

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