Cold Creek Trail to High Meadows

MODERATE 67 reviews

Cold Creek Trail to High Meadows is a 6.7 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 best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,391 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

1 month ago

very enjoyable

hiking
3 months ago

beautiful hike. little challenging but well worth it.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike along cold creek that finishes in a wide open meadow with a winding river running through it. Better trail than Van Sickle but not as good views of Tahoe.

hiking
4 months ago

Really fun hike! Trail is well marked and easy to follow. There are lots of wildflowers along the trail, not as many in the actual meadow. Easy to complete in a few hours. I would definitely do this hike again.

4 months ago

enjoyed this hike a lot. the river is forceful, lots of small waterfalls. to get on right path: there is a well-worn dirt & pine needles path to the left of the fire road (near the last parking spot after you enter the green gate). follow that down to the creek, there's a wooden bridge to go across to the trail marker (15 minutes). very slow & steady elevation gain for most of trail. download local Google maps on to your phone as easy to miss the spur to the fire road (if you are doing partial hike). no snow at all on trail. the trail doesn't seem to go to the peak-peak; I'd definitely try to get up the sandy area at the very top, under the power lines. views seemed amazing. did the hike in sneakers on a cloudy/overcast day. the creek crossings all had rocks or something, feet did not get wet. finished in 2.5 hours but think I switched to the power line loop accidentally so not sure about mileage.

hiking
8 months ago

trail is not marked at the beginning, trail begins at few hundred yard West to the nearest residential building. you will need to cross a river upon start of trail, and you will need to cross a few creeks.

hiking
9 months ago

It was somewhat difficult to find the trail from the starting point that shows here. We had to walk down a hill and cross the creek to get to the trail. Only made it 2 miles and unfortunately didn’t see much in the way of nice scenery it was just a forest walk. I’m sure it’s amazing if you get to the top, but the first 2 miles are rather dull.

hiking
9 months ago

We did it on Dec. 23. 2017 and it was just a bit with snow. Such a great hike.

mountain biking
Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Hard work on a bike. Some bits are great fun, some bits are extremely technical and we had to carry our bikes rather than ride. Would be a fairly straightforward hike and the meadow is beautiful, very peaceful.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Omg!!!! Beautiful!!!!! Best hike I've been on!

Monday, June 19, 2017

This is a great trail to run/hike/bike. Streams are high right now, so, beware of any crossings and take extreme caution with children.

If you are hiking or running, I suggest earlier in the morning and keep your ears open for Mtn. Bikers which thicken as the day goes on. There are a few switchbacks and technical sections for bikers where it's more difficult to share the moderately trafficked trail, so it's best to be prepared for that in advance.

Lots of sporadic shade and near the creek the entire route. Beautiful.

Friday, June 09, 2017

favorite running trail

hiking
Thursday, June 08, 2017

Great hike with most of the trail along a gushing creek. A patch or two of snow near the top where it meets the meadow. The creek is too strong to pass at the top and make a loop. We came back the way we came and enjoyed it more coming down.

Wednesday, June 01, 2016

great moutain bike ride and lot great views,some wild bears and coyotes on the trail but other than that a great View of the lake when you get to the top !

hiking
Sunday, April 24, 2016

I actually started on the power line loop and did a part of this hike. The cold reek trail is more rugged and can be hard to follow in early spring when part of it is covered in snow. Power line is wider and is easier to stay on in some light snow. Also if you are a beginning mountain biker power line is easier. I can't comment on the meadow, it was covered in snow. If you are going to hike cold creek, have good hiking shoes and maybe some poles. The ground is uneven and hard on knees, feet, and ankles.

hiking
Wednesday, July 06, 2011

One of my favorites for early summer. A bit snowy this year when I made it to the meadow at the end of May, but I have heard it is beautiful now, with only a couple of patches left. Unfortunately, the bridge across the river connecting the trail to the road when you reach the meadow is no longer there, so you cannot access the road to do the "loop" when you get to the top. If you want to actually see the meadow, it is best to take the dirt road. High Meadow is stunning if you get there after the snow melts. Beautiful Buttercups, Shooting Stars, and a myriad of other flowers. If you are lucky, you might see a frog or two! The mountains surrounding the meadow are spectacular. Oh... the creek is beautiful, too... waterfalls along the way.

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