Trails.com is merging with AllTrails! Please click here to read more.

Crystal Lake Trail

MODERATE 516 reviews
#2 of 120 trails in

Crystal Lake Trail is a 3.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Mammoth Lakes, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and fishing and is best used from June until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 3.1 miles Elevation Gain: 833 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly

fishing

hiking

nature trips

forest

lake

views

muddy

snow

Sequoia Kings Canyon National Park, 47050 Generals Highway , Three Rivers, CA, 93271-9651, Phone: 559-565-3341, Fax: 559-565-3730, TTY: 559-565-3196

hiking
15 days ago

A little but if snow but pretty clear. Gorgeous views

hiking
29 days ago

We really enjoyed this hike. Very few people and it was beautiful. The views were amazing. We did find a trail that looped is all the way around crystal lake.

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Stay to the left bordering Lake Mary, my husband and I veared off to the right and got off trail. Its a beautiful view of lake Mary as you ascend and at the top Crystal lake is beautiful.

hiking
1 month ago

Well maintained trail to beautiful lake. We got there around 3pm so a bit windy/chilly on the lake and in the shade on the way down. No bugs at this late date a plus.

hiking
1 month ago

Fantastic views and great exercise for something that’s so accessible and short.

hiking
1 month ago

this was an amazing hike! the views are phenomenal but the climb is strenuous if your not used to the elevation.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice, well-maintained trail with beautiful views of Lake George and Lake Mary on the way up to Crystal Lake. The mountain views are also beautiful. Not too steep and not too long. Took us about 1 1/2 hours to go up and down and walk around the lake a little bit. We hiked in the afternoon, so it was getting a bit chilly on the way down.

hiking
2 months ago

Awesome views about half way up the hill. Also great views when you reach the lake. Fishing was slow. Would definitely do this hike again!

backpacking
2 months ago

I'm Glad I was in my 4x4 truck, because there is about 10 miles of logging roads and a standard vehicle wouldn't make it. My trip took place October 1st and it was a beautiful fall day. Once I got up to the trailhead there's about 3 mi of hiking. Most of the trail was covered in about 3-6 inches of snow. so it was kind of tough to see the trail but I managed. I would have to rate this hike as difficult, maybe because of my age or the snow, either way it was tough! I regret not taking a small pistol or bear spray cause I saw some tracks of both. But I managed to make to the lake and it was absolutely breathtaking! there was snow covered pine trees that mirrored in the smooth as glass lake!

hiking
2 months ago

Absolutely stunning trail. Best part of the trail is the fact that it's all uphill going in and downhill coming back. So once you reach the lake, you can take in all the views as you rest and get recharged before heading down. It was little tough for the kids (under 7) in the beginning but it works out since they motivate and challenge each other. Definitely going back soon !!

hiking
snow
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike, nice day.

hiking
2 months ago

A favorite trail that I have hiked since 12 years old through young adulthood. Haven’t been back to this trail in 30 years; was excited to revisit! Switchbacks for the first mile, but nice shade. Lots of rocks and tree roots along the way, with a few rocky steps, some very high, so take your time on those for us older folks! Trekking poles were a godsend for me, and noticed that many people used them, young and old. I wore lightweight trail runners and they were perfect. Several people out hiking, some with their dogs and kids. everyone was in a cheerful mood, and the day was beautiful! (Wednesday sept 11th) the lake is beautiful as I remember! Very worthwhile walk, be sure to not miss this while in Mammoth!

hiking
2 months ago

Low effort high reward, views are incredible. Almost no traffic on a Friday evening.

hiking
2 months ago

I only went to Mammoth Lakes in the first place because I had a hotel there for my days at Yosemite. I was quite surprised then to find out how nice the area itself is, which is why I decided to do this great hike. While it goes uphill the entire way, it's still very doable. The lake is really nice, but so are the views along the way. Excluding a break at the lake, it also took me around 1.5 hours, so this is one that can be done if you are a bit in a hurry.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike in the early morning. Dogs loved the lake! Good amount of foot traffic, but well worth it.

hiking
3 months ago

Great out and back trail with a beautiful lake at the end. Pretty strenuous for 1 mile because it is consistently uphill, but well worth it. On the way back keep to the trail on the left so as not to go off, which happened easily.

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing trail !! And at the end beautiful lake view ! Hike back is easy ...

hiking
3 months ago

The side trail to the top, after reaching Crystal, is well worth the effort. Going back down, the trail splits after creek. Pay attention and bear left.

Easy short hike. Crystal lake is very pretty but the rest of the hike is nothing special (there is a good view of the town from up top, before you get to the lake). I started around 9 on a weekday and it wasn't busy on the way up but coming down I passed many people -- most with either a fishing pole or a dog. Speaking of: dog poop, horse poop, litter... it's clearly a popular trail. This isn't a hike to do if you are looking to have peace or quiet.

hiking
rocky
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

views of at least four different lakes throughout.

fishing
3 months ago

Great hike, beautiful views, fishing is tough. I went this morning, I was searching for that elusive golden trout. Steep going up, I’m guess almost 2500 - 3000 feet over a short distance. You then travel down to crystal lake. I fished about 80% of the shoreline and had a few rises but the fish weren’t taking what I was offering. A few people there and on the trail but not what I would call crowded. A few swimmers, water was cold but I wished I had brought something to swim in. Be careful on the way back I went off trail and had to back track - uphill several hundred yards. I only noticed because the view was different as was the sound of the creek that flows out of the lake. There was a nice breeze all day so no bugs!

dope hike, not difficult at all but yes a bit strenuous for being so short, worth it!

hiking
3 months ago

Be careful on the way back. It’s easy to go off trail in the first half mile of the return- it looks like a well worn trail but if you hear an alert from your phone check to see if it’s telling you you’re off trail. I’ve rarely gotten off trail before like on this one. Beautiful views. Some mosquitos. Nice water temp!

hiking
rocky
3 months ago

Beautiful! Some bugs, but not a whole lot. Laid on a rock near the lake for a good 30 mins. Weather was great!

hiking
3 months ago

Worth the huff and puff to get to a beautiful lake. We hiked mid afternoon on a Sunday and passed a few people heading back. It was a steep hike with lots of switchbacks. There are plenty of spots to stop along the way to catch your breath and take in the wonderful mountain and lake views.

hiking
3 months ago

Great short hike to a beautiful lake!

Load More