Emma Lake Trail

MODERATE 7 reviews
#68 of 118 trails in

Emma Lake Trail is a 2.1 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Bridgeport, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from June until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

2.1 miles
702 feet

dog friendly

kid friendly



nature trips




wild flowers

Directions from Bridgeport: Take U.S. Highway 395 sixteen miles north. Turn left onto FR 066, the road is marked with a road sign and a large USFS campground sign. Follow this dirt road all the way to the end, ten miles. Stock users may wish to park at the Burt Canyon trailhead to increase ride length and avoid the bumpiest section of road. A normal passenger car can make it to the trailhead just take your time.

7 months ago

7-5-17- I hiked the Emma Lake Trail yesterday and it was beautiful as always. I have hiked this trail a few times in years past and it has always been memorable to say the least. Sometimes the road to the trail head is pretty rocky due to glacial moraine so some vehicles may have a bit of trouble without the clearance. We have previously made it with various types of vehicles. However, after the rocky area the last part of the road gets better. The trailhead is marked and has a parking area. After the first part of the trail as you crest the first ridge into the meadow the trail is covered by snow and we had to slightly detour up along the left edge of the snowpack. Also because the surrounding Bridgeport area got a lot of snow, the creek that comes from Emma Lake and runs into Poison Creek floods the meadow where the trail runs so instead we kept left along the tree line and the bottom of the hill and slowly cut right through the trees staying on the left side of the creek. Additionally, a small avalanche downed some trees across the trail after the meadow and the trail is not visible any longer. As you continue soon after that you will run into the same creek again but due to massive amounts of snow and run off ; the creek (at this time) is not passable and the trail is covered in snow. Instead of taking the trail this year, we stayed left of the creek and walked straight up the hill which is a mix between scree (loose rock) and snow. If you hike straight up from the left side of the creek and pass the next two crests you will find yourself on the left side of Emma lake. I'm not sure how the original trail looks but the trail might permanently be changed. The alternate route we had to take actually might even be easier than the steep rocky slope that the original last 3rd of the trail consisted of.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

This is a lovely, short hike. On a summer Saturday we saw no one else on the trail or at the lake. Uphill 1.5 miles from the trailhead to the lake. Beautiful views to the East as you head up. Be sure to take a car with pretty good clearance to make it all the way down the road to the trailhead.

6 months ago

6 months ago

7 months ago

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Thursday, July 07, 2016