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Phoenix Lake Loop via Gertrude Ord Trail

EASY 203 reviews
#5 of 82 trails in

Phoenix Lake Loop via Gertrude Ord Trail is a 2.7 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Ross, California that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 2.7 miles Elevation Gain: 232 feet Route Type: Loop

dog friendly

kid friendly


mountain biking

nature trips






wild flowers

This trail starts from the main parking lot at the end of Lagunitas Road. If going counter-clockwise, you start on a dirt road, going around the northern part of the lake. After about a mile, you can take a left onto a hiking only trail that traverses the southern part of the lake. There are bridges to cut the left side a bit, if you're short on time. Along the southern part of the lake, there are some small inclines, and then a small switchback back down to a dirt road. The road then returns to where you started, and you can take one of 3 small trails down to your car. Great loop to do with your dog in the Mount Tamalpais Watershed, a lesser known and lesser visited park area nearby Mount Tamalpais State Park. You’ll have an easier time parking here than at other trailheads in the area but will still probably share the trail with a few other joggers making this a safe and convenient choice for a run or hike.

22 days ago

This was a gorgeous hike with lots of cross trail options to change up the scenery and distance over multiple visits.

washed out
24 days ago

busy trail that's very eroded. It's an easy walk for a little leg stretcher and dogs are allowed.

2 months ago

Be careful when using gps/google maps to get here. If you enter Phoenix lake loop/trail, it will bring you over to deer park and around in circles. You may have better luck entering lagunitas car park. However, having said that, it’s only an hour walk from deer park car park, which is free and not over crowded. The lake loop itself, as per this trail map, is a nice gentle walk with lovely views of the water which is very clear. Lots of people out and about and plenty of cyclists flying around. Owners with dogs, elderly, young, seems like a trail that all can manage if you stick only to this map and do not head off on any of the connecting trails.

4 months ago

Great trail! Mellow stroll around a pretty lake. Minus one star for poison oak though.

5 months ago

Easy and scenic hike around the lake. The majority of the route is fire road, with the most exposed section being the uphill climb from the parking lot to the dam. I've hiked it several times but I really don't have a preference for clockwise or counterclockwise, as there isn't much of a difference in climbing.

5 months ago

Beautiful hike. I've been hiking Pheonix Lake since the late 70s. This hike takes you on a loop around the lake . It can be alittle tricky once your off the fire road, watch for roots all along the hiking path, they can be tooth breakers if you happen to fall on your face. Luckily I know the best Oral Surgeons in town and there not far from there . Dr Matt Mynsberge and Dr Mat Ruggles in Greenbrae. . This hike is gorgeous and it will not disappoint you. I believe it's about 3 miles around the lake . Take some time out of your day and see one of Marins most beautiful lakes .

6 months ago

Easy little hike. Nice views the whole way. I went counter-clockwise. First part was along a dirt road, then took a left onto a hiking only trail. A couple small climbs and then a left onto the dirt road again. Took less than an hour.

6 months ago

We did this hike with three kids 1-6 years old. It took us three hours to do this hike with many rest stops at a very leisurely pace. Highlights for kids were the turtles in the water (swimming too!) and taking off their shoes and socks and splashing in all the water streams. Also some beautiful wildflowers out right now.

After drinking your morning coffee and reading the Sunday papers, groggy from last night’s festivities, this is the perfect Sunday afternoon hike to do spontaneously. Very pretty scenery given how close to civilization you are. Look for the Lake turtles. I saw about a dozen today. Best to park in Ross by Episcopal church and stroll past huge homes on the way to trail. Trial parking lot very limited, so why frustrate yourself at beginning of your outing. Easy hike, but some spots with steep stairs but overall can do in running shoes. Took me about an hour to complete the loop.

6 months ago

Nice and relaxing trail around the lake !

A nice easy trail that I often do. Nothing super special, but a nice way to get some steps in!

Going up is great.

9 months ago

Nice, easy, not too many people. Fun to find a new area for hikes, lots to explore.

11 months ago

Beautiful, easy hike for a Fall day.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Yolanda trail an excellent side trip.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Been waking & running this trail since seventies. Nice views of Lake & half dirt road & half foot trail. Easy hike. Look for turtles sunning on logs. Saw 4+ foot rattle snake crossing road last Sunday 7/8/18. 1st seen by lake in all this time!

Friday, June 29, 2018

Easy, beautiful views and ideal for dogs. Slightly steep at the beginning but not too difficult.

Saturday, June 02, 2018

Very nice trail. Friday afternoon beautiful views of water and foliage. A great hike for a few hours and not crowded during the weekday.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Easy, kid-friendly, watch out for lots of mountain bikers/runners. Didn’t want to wait for parking, we just parked off of glenwood Avenue (about 2 street parking spots). Did this trail with two kids in tow (3 and 5 year old). Not one complained during the 3ish miles (including how far we parked from the trailhead). Plenty of shade when you get up to Gertrude-ord trail. Lots of benches.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Easy, quickly, refreshing

Friday, February 16, 2018

Easy trails to take. A number of options. Some more difficult than others. The parking lot gets crowded early. If you’re going mid-morning, park towards town and walk in. A beautiful short loop of a trail.

Sunday, January 07, 2018

Took my 3 yearold and had a great time. Parking is a nightmare and we had to park a mile away and walk in so be prepared. Also a TON of mountain bikers so watch out.

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Love it. 8-9 am is great time to hike this trail.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Busy parking lot for a Tuesday but just park on the street before you drive down to the parking area. From there you can take a trail to the loop. It is unmarked but takes off on the left hand side of the road leading to the lakes parking lot. Lovely loop, great for trail running

Friday, July 07, 2017

perfect hike with my dogs. So much cooler weather in that area.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Great loop!

Monday, January 16, 2017

Great hike, pretty even grade throughout, half fire road / half trail

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

A nice, easy hike around a small beautiful lake. Short and mostly level. Despite being an easy hike this is one to do again and again. The environment is spectacular.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Great trail run or walk. A little over half in the shade. Seems to be popular so parking could be an issue. I preferred counter clockwise but it wouldn't matter. Some of this is a dirt road, not a trail.

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