Loon Lake Trail

MODERATE 38 reviews
#18 of 78 trails in

Loon Lake Trail is a 8.9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Pollock Pines, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, birding, and fishing and is best used from February until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
8.9 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1181 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

birding

fishing

hiking

walking

forest

lake

views

wild flowers

backpacking
17 days ago

backpacking
17 days ago

I love this trail. Have been hiking it for close to 40 years. Most recently, a simple overnight out and back to Buck Lake, about 5.5 miles from the Loon Lake trailhead. 100 degree August days in Sacramento, and 80 degrees on the trail. The first 2.5 or so miles is mostly flat and in the shade for most of the way. Then the trees get sparce and the ankle rolling, knee wrenching, granite "rocks" come out, and stick with you until Buck Lake. At the southeast end of Loon Lake, the flat trail ends and a mile and a half of uphill gets the blood moving. At Spider Lake, the trail levels for a short while, then begins a mile and a half desent into Buck Lake. Others have posted that there are no fish in the lake. Not true. There just don't seem to be the easy to catch planters so common in California lakes. Take a fly rod and work the morning and evening hatch and you will be amazed at what you can catch. I recommend going during the week if you like quiet. Weekends are not only busier with backpackers, the Rubicon jeep trail is just on the far side of both Spider and Buck lakes, and the sound of grinding motors and partying can last all night. This week, I shared the lake with just a trail crew making improvements and cutting new trail leading away from Buck Lake to Rockbound. By dark they were asleep and I was just left with just a Grey Rubber Boa (a snake) for company.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

backpacking
1 month ago

Two buddies and I went backpacking up to buck island lake. Great views the whole way. Pretty hot during the day but we expected that since the elevation on the entire route is under 7,000 feet. Limited campsites at the lake so I'm glad we left early. The rubicon river was quite impressive and so cold. We had a blast!

hiking
1 month ago

backpacking
2 months ago

Backpacked with my two young sons to Buck Island Lake. The trail is as advertised...alot of granite rocks. But it made for an exciting trip. It was hot, and not a lot of shade once you got to the end of Loon Lake. All in all, a great trip.

hiking
2 months ago

2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Was really a nice hike. The only criticism of this train is that it's composed of loose granite at around the half way mark, which could lead to twisted ankles or knees. Other than that the hike was very nice.

2 months ago

a beautiful hike! gorgeous views and very quiet. As of 06/09 there was quite a bit of water on the trail but still manageable.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice hike! Unfortunately thunderstorm, wind, hail came out of nowhere and had to pitch camp quick but ended up being gorgeous views, and hike. As of 6/22/17 there's no snow on the trails, wet from the rainstorm, but easily crossed over creeks and standing water without getting my hiking boots wet. No snow up toward rubicon reservoir! Mild patches noted on the mountain tops.

backpacking
2 months ago

This was a great hike for our 3rd annual backpacking trip. We hiked from Loon Lake to Spider Lake. The trail is rocky but well worth the effort.

3 months ago

One of the best locations in the El Dorado National Forest; so beautiful!

4 months ago

6 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

So quiet and just gorgeous! I loved being able to bring my dog with me.

11 months ago

loved it

hiking
11 months ago

Amazing trail!!