D.L. Bliss State Park to Emerald Bay State Park via Rubicon Trail

MODERATE 33 reviews
#5 of 6 trails in

D.L. Bliss State Park to Emerald Bay State Park via Rubicon Trail is a 7.3 mile out and back trail located near Tahoma, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, trail running, and birding and is best used from June until September.

7.3 miles
1003 feet
Out & Back



trail running




no dogs

5 days ago

Amazing views once you get to Rubicon and head towards Emerald Bay. Bit slippery in parts with the snow so make sure to wear appropriate shoes.

13 days ago

It was a great hike today not much snow!

24 days ago

Spectacular view with fresh water coming right out of the mountain

3 months ago

This hike is one of my favorites on the West Shore! During the off-season, the trail is clear and you are able to really enjoy the spectacular views. I have done this hike a few other times, in the summer, and it's a mess with all the tourists.
Note: they are doing controlled burning at DL Bliss right now, so you have to park at the top lot and walk down. That alone tacks on an extra mile or so.

5 months ago

Great hike! We came her on Labor Day Weekend on the Sunday to park @ DL Bliss Park. After reading all of these reviews, I was afraid I wouldn't be able to find parking...we arrived @ DL Bliss around 9am, and there was actually plenty of parking!! The hike itself is as what everybody has been saying...very scenic, you are hiking on the side of emerald bay the whole way so theres always water to see! Lots of shade as well. No dogs were allowed, and we did see at least 1 ranger so be careful! When you reach Emerald Bay, be sure to rent a kayak ($25/hr for one person kayak) and sail to the tea house island! Don't forget to grab a popsicle at the Visitors Center as well! We loved the hike, it was about a 8 mile hike altogether but I wouldn't say its a moderate hike..I'd say in between easy-moderate, as there are still inlines you have to do.

6 months ago

Tough trail but the views are worth it. And you can find spots to get in the water.

6 months ago

I was there last week. Stunning at every turn. Moderate-light or Easy + is what i rate it. Found great place for lunch at waters edge just before the boat-only campground. Look for the steps leading to the water.

8 months ago

stunning views. easy access and well marked. elevation gains were gradual.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Steep walking at times. Not recommended for anyone without physical stamina. Lots of people had to stop and rest and catch their breath going back to the top to finish. Emerald Bay itself is beautiful and picturesque. Lots and lots of people. Good luck finding a parking spot.

Monday, August 03, 2015

The trail itself is great with nice views of Tahoe. The down side is the crowds on the trail and the difficult parking situation. If you don't get there early, there is no parking space. No dogs. Go on this trail out of season. The Cal Park Law Enforcement Rangers are not friendly or helpful and we encountered a lady ranger who was abusive when we misunderstood instructions. We were threatened with fines and kicked out of the park. Same ranger threatened a church group with expulsion at Sugar Pine Park when a bear took out a car window during the night.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

We started on the DL Bliss side and hiked around to the boat ramp in Emerald Bay. Stunning views, well maintained trail and overall very enjoyable.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Started at Emerald Bay State Park and made our way to Vikingsholm. Several speed bumps left by local bears. A bit windy but a great hike.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

A beautiful trail with outstanding vistas. We started at DL Bliss State Park, hiked to Vikingsholm, took the tour and hiked back. Made for a long day, but WELL worth it! We all had a wonderful time and will make this an annual event!
For some reason I can't upload more than a few of my photos, so I'll include a link to my blog.

paddle sports
Friday, November 23, 2012

We camped at D.L. Bliss campsite on the west shore of Lake Tahoe north of Hwy 50 just off Hwy 89. We canoed 10 miles (round trip) from D.L. Bliss Campground into Emerald Bay, around Fannette Island, past VIKINGSHOLM and that whole area by canoe is amazingly beautiful. Make sure to get your reservations at D.L. Bliss campground early because it is a very popular campground in the summer.

14 days ago

5 months ago

6 months ago

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