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Kennedy Meadows to Relief Reservior Trail

moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(112)
Stanislaus National Forest

Kennedy Meadows to Relief Reservior Trail is a 6.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Pinecrest, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird watching and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length 6.1 mi Elevation gain 1,371 ft Route type Out & Back

Dog friendly

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Bird watching

Lake

River

Views

Waterfall

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Rocky

Description
Waypoints (0)
Getting There

A great hike with a lot of beautiful sights to see. Great beginner backpacking for families.

State Route 108 (from the Central Valley) - 7/21/11 8:19 PM PDT <- - http://www.dot.ca.gov/hq/roadinfo/sr108 <- SR 108 [IN THE CENTRAL CALIFORNIA AREA & SIERRA NEVADA] 1-WAY CONTROLLED TRAFFIC AT VARIOUS LOCATIONS FROM 7.8 MI EAST OF LONG BARN TO 6 MI EAST OF STRAWBERRY (TUOLUMNE CO) FROM 0700 HRS TO 1700 HRS MONDAY THRU FRIDAY THRU 7/22/11 - DUE TO CONSTRUCTION - MOTORISTS ARE SUBJECT TO DELAYS OF UP TO 15 MINUTES U.S. Route 395 (from the Eastern Sierras) Sonora Pass is seasonal, also check SR 108 above - 7/21/11 8:19 PM PDT <- - http://www.dot.ca.gov/hq/roadinfo/us395 <- US 395 [IN THE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA AREA] NO TRAFFIC RESTRICTIONS ARE REPORTED FOR THIS AREA. [IN THE CENTRAL CALIFORNIA AREA & SIERRA NEVADA] NO TRAFFIC RESTRICTIONS ARE REPORTED FOR THIS AREA. [IN THE NORTHERN CALIFORNIA AREA] NO TRAFFIC RESTRICTIONS ARE REPORTED FOR THIS AREA. << this is taken from http://www.kennedymeadows.com

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (113)
Photos (266)
Recordings (63)
Completed (314)
Terri Beam
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 5, 2020
Hiking

A fantastic hike with beautiful views all the the way up. You can see Sonora Peak and Leavit Peak as you walk along the river. Great waterfalls and granite walls...and then you come to the reservoir! The most beautiful and pristine blue water you will see. The walk along the reservoir trail is breath-taking. Closer to 9 miles if you go to the water past the creek.

View Terri's Recording
Brynnan Green
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 24, 2020
Hiking

Great payoff for a relatively short hike. Lots of horses on the trail. Lots of great camping site around the reservoir. Be sure to bring a bear canister.

View Brynnan's Recording
Racheal Fisher
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 13, 2020

The climb was a challenge for me but around every corner there was something beautiful to behold. Cascading waterfalls, rushing rivers, wood bridges, towering rock faces and sweeping views of the reservoir and the tops of the Sierras were some of the highlights.

Nic King
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 6, 2020
Hiking

We had a wonderful time. It was busy over 4th of July weekend but that is to be expected. It was beautiful. It was the perfect hike to introduce a friend to backpacking. I spent my first night in a hammock.

B Sommer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 2, 2020
HikingNo shade

Worth the climb. Bring plenty of water a hat for protection because there is little shade. Not too crowded on a Thursday afternoon and recommend turning right after the second bridge (wooden one) as it's a much easier on joints than the left steep stone stairs.

View B's Recording
Craig G.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 27, 2020
Hiking

Great trail. This was my first time backpacking overnight. Was a great time. Pretty tough trail for a first time trip. But the views were beautiful.

View Craig's Recording
Richard Robinson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 18, 2020
Rocky

Trails around resevoir were very confusing and didnt always coincide with the maps. very pleasant hike otherwise. be careful of the excessive Horse Manure

Paula Chavez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 17, 2020
Hiking

We stumbled upon this trail while riding up North From Los Banos. The weather was at the high of 70 degrees so it was a little warm. But when the breeze kicked in, it was nice. I don’t have the best of knees so they were definitely swollen when we got back to Kennedy Meadows. The ice cold beer at the store when we got back was a great reward Most definitely recommend this hike

Backcountry Pilgrim
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 9, 2020
Hiking

Great trail! Rivers, bridges, creeks, cave, dam, beautiful reservoir . . . a lot of bang for the buck!

Syed Ahmed
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 7, 2020
HikingNo shadeOff trailRockyScrambleSnow
View Syed's Recording
David Koenig
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 2, 2020
Hiking

June 2, 2020. This turned out to be a nice, 'early season' hike. We park in the designated hiking parking area which adds roughly .75 miles to the hike. Rumor is you can park up past the restaurant if you're a day hiker. The climb up can be a bit hot by late morning, not a lot of protection from the sun. After the second bridge you can take the horse trail to the right, or the stairs straight up. One way is not significantly better than the other. When you get to the trail Y, keep right until you reach the old boiler section. We turned right here on the smaller trail, through the gully and up the other side. This will dump you out at a good vista over the lake and dam. The trail is easy to follow, but the lake is a little farther out than you'd think. We almost abandoned the hike because our 3 yo was tapped out after about 4 miles. The restaurant is open all afternoon for a late lunch if needed.

Oliver Diaz
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 31, 2020
HikingBridge outRocky

It’s was a good trail. Mostly up uphill but it was great ! The lazy rivers were my favorite

Keely Comparan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 28, 2020
HikingNo shadeRocky

Up hill all the way to the lake without a lot of shade so be prepared with some sunscreen, hat & water. There was some streams from snow run off that you can cool off with. The lake is beautiful, we bouldered down to the water and sat for a while there. A little to cold for swimming but perfect to dip your feet in. Mid week was perfect, not a lot of people on the trail. Had tried it on a weekend and the crowd was overwhelming. If you want a quiet hike choose a week day.

Keely Pfeiffer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 26, 2020
Hiking

Great hike with beautiful views. This hike is at least 8 miles. Not the 6.1 miles that the app says. We would say it’s moderately hard. It’s uphill most of the way there, with downhill being a bit slippery in the sand on the way back.

Evan Coughenour
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 24, 2020
Hiking

Solid hike. Carried the toddler in the pack. The river was raging. Amazing to look out over the reservoir with snow capped mountains at the top.

nidi p.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 16, 2020
Hiking

Amazing trail! The hike up to the reservoir is moderately difficult but there are plenty of shady areas to rest. Bring a light sweater it is a little chilly if you start your hike before 9 am. Definitely coming back!

Kerri Cavin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 13, 2020
Hiking

Nice steady uphill hike to lake. I would rate as moderately easy. Beautiful views and river crossings.

View Kerri's Recording
Rachael Pahl
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Backpacking

Very horsie.

Emily Hudson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 24, 2020
Hiking

LOVE THIS TRAIL!!!!

Chuck Goodman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 25, 2019
HikingRocky

Love the views, the river, the high Sierra environs. Not a fan of sharing the trail with so many horses and mules. Really sandy too for much of the trail. Worth it though!

Michael Carey
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 5, 2019
Hiking

Great hike! Beautiful area! Hiked this Sat/Sun Aug 3-4 , 2019 Trailhead: Overnight car parking is 1.5mi from the actual start to the trail itself, so account for that in your mileage. It's a busy area, but seemed mostly related to all the camps/cabins/fishing in Kennedy Meadows area itself. There are toilets and water at the trailhead. Regular sedan car is fine to get here, no need for a 4x4 as it's basically right off 108. Trail: Easy to follow. Moderate / Hard depending on your own levels. Water: As of Aug 3-4, 2019, plenty of water. Streams/creeks flowing well, and of course the reservoir. Always bring enough water! Dog Friendly: Yes. But need to be trail conditioned. Also, there are horses on this trail. Bug Factor: On a scale of 1-10, I'd rate it a 3. We had a few at dusk at our campsite by the reservoir, that was about it. Overall, great hike! Once we were a few miles in, we didn't see many folks so it was fairly quiet. Lots of camp opportunities around the area. Please check local ranger station for updated conditions, restrictions and permit information. Stay Safe!!

Samantha Valladares
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 28, 2019
HikingGreat!
Sebastian Grobys
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 28, 2019
Hiking

Beautiful scenery - but this being a heavy-use horse trail, much of the path is very soft sand that's not particularly nice to walk in, and the smell of fresh horse droppings is ever-present along the way.

Mike Owen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 26, 2019
Backpacking

I went in mid July, just a quick weekend overnight. Lots of waterfalls and runoff. A few miles are steep but the trail is dry well maintained and easy to follow. Lots of horses, lots of people. Camping spot overlooking the lake. There were people around but I didn’t feel crowded. Parking at the trailhead, and a few campsites nearby for people headed into the wilderness. Nearby forest service campgrounds are full or nearly full. I asked at the camp store if it was always very busy on weekends and they said “July is like this”.

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