Heart Lake Trail From Castle Lake

MODERATE 21 reviews
#5 of 26 trails in

Heart Lake Trail From Castle Lake is a 2 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Mt Shasta, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from July until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

2.0 miles
721 feet
Out & Back

dog friendly



nature trips

trail running





wild flowers




Follow signs to Castle Lake from the town of Mt Shasta. From Central Mt Shasta go west on Lake St, turn south on S Old Stage, Veer right at WA Barr Rd, cross Box Canyon Dam (Lake Siskiyou), turn left on the Castle Lake road shortly after the dam and follow the pavement to its end at Castle Lake.

5 days ago

Best views you can get for such a short hike. Trail isn't marked 100%, but it's fairly easy to navigate. i suggest hiking above heart lake for an even more breathtaking view!

21 days ago

3 months ago


4 months ago

6 months ago

Great Trail. Slightly Challenging. If your not used to the altitude it will be even more of a challenge. Trail not marked and it can be easy to stray. Just stay on the rocky path and follow other hikers. Once you reach Heart Lake, you can continue west up on the ridge to get an AMAZING view of Mt Shasta and the surrounding area. Stay positive.

7 months ago

8 months ago

Took children all the way up to Heart Lake from Castle Lake. The hike was full of beautiful views!

8 months ago

Watch your footing! Pick your way up to the top of the ridge for great views of Castle Crags.

8 months ago

This is a gorgeous hike, the view is incredible!

8 months ago

9 months ago

I recommend this hike for its views of Mt Shasta. As for Heart Lake it is beautiful a must see.

9 months ago

Be careful with the above descriptions. The first one is the correct one. The second is for HART lake, not HEART lake.
The views from the top are spectacular but the trail is not easy to follow. I got lost as well as everybody else coming up the trail because it suddenly vanishes in the rocks. Just keep on going in the same direction. The lake is directly above Castle Lake.

10 months ago

Great hike, elevation affected one of my party so beware. I think I was around 6000 when we got to the lake, but it was well worth it. Bring a camera! Oh, on the downside, the trail is not well marked, so lot of folks are trampling around trying to find the way; ourselves included.

10 months ago

Fun hike for all ages. Enjoying Heart Lake and the view of Mount Shasta is a wonderful reward. I have done this hike many times.

10 months ago

11 months ago

Plan on going straight up, much of the time on rocks. The good point is it's less than a mile of a strenuous uphill. I thought it would be an easier uphill, so don't count on that. We went up during a summer storm so the view was mostly clouds. Cute little lake up top and you can tell would be a spectacular view on a clear day. If you want a beginner trail to break in your kids for backpacking, or more strenuous trails, this is it. It has the uphill climb, but without the extended duration.

The only thing making me only give four stars is it's easy to lose the trail once you get on the rocky part. There's a "fork" in the rocky part and you're to stay to the right, but honestly we world have missed it if someone hadn't just came down that part and told us to stay right at a stick marker.

After that, there were multiple times we would have lost the trail if prior hikers hadn't put up the stone stack markers. So, just be careful. Use your AllTrails app gps (always on even without service) to double check your trail.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Thursday, November 05, 2015

Great view!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Just so you know, the description is not correct. This lake is nowhere near Mammoth Lakes. It's just off of Castle Lake in the town of Mt Shasta.

This out and back trail is a MUST. The view of Mt. Shasta from Heart Lake is magnificent. Parts of it are steep, so if you have issues with knees or hips, this may not be a hike for you...or bring poles for support.

At some point, the trail splits. Stay to the right and continue up towards a rocky trail and trees. The lake will be nussled in above and to the right. Enjoy!

Saturday, July 11, 2015

This is a great trail for kids or anyone wanting to do just a short hike without alot of elevation gain. It is uphill, but when you reach Heart Lake you're rewarded with a great view of Shasta & Black Butte. Back near the trailhead, Castle Lake offers nice kayaking or swimming, too.