Relief Reservoir Trail

MODERATE 23 reviews
#14 of 62 trails in

Relief Reservoir Trail is a 7.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Pinecrest, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

7.2 miles
1,660 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly



horseback riding

nature trips

trail running





wild flowers


Directions from Summit District Ranger Office: Travel 29 miles east on Highway 108 to Kennedy Meadow Road. The trailhead is located just south of Deadman Campground near Kennedy Meadows Resort.

1 month ago

We did this for my birthday on June 3. It’s a beautiful strenuous hike up to the reservoir. It took us about 3.5 hours to get to the reservoir as we took my 3 year old son. Once we got to the reservoir the view was amazing. In between the snow cap mountains. Beautiful. Took us about 1.5 hours back as it is nothing but downhill after that! We did see a coyote by the water, that was cool.

1 month ago

Amazing hike. The first 3 miles up are strenuous but then its a nice slow downhill to the reservoir. Views are spectacular. Went in June 2017; part of the trail was still snowed in and a few streams were overflowing. So, glad I had waterproof Lowas on.

3 months ago

Great hike however it was extremely difficult for me but I am also no where near being in shape

9 months ago

Adventurous trail

9 months ago

Beautiful day and clear skies on 10/28/17! Trail is maintained well and very easy to follow. After the second bridge, you either go right or left. We went up the right side and down the left side. I think the right side is much better on the knees and less steep but I could be wrong. It just felt like there were more rocks/boulders on the left side (coming down). This is a beautiful hike as you get to see waterfalls along the way. I thought this hike was easy (I hike 2x a month or so) but my friend said it was hard for her (she doesn't hike).

elevation gain is actually only 880FT
mileage: 5.6 miles from Kennedy resort

11 months ago

Did this hike this past weekend with my boyfriend and we loved it. Started at the Kennedy meadows campground parking lot. Absolutely beautiful hike! Passed a beautiful meadow. Saw lot of wildflowers. The hike was along a river which was nice. Snow capped mountains in the background. We loved that the trail wasn't extremely crowded. There was a bit of uphill and we were wondering where the heck the reservoir was, but we finally saw it and were in awe. We went in for a swim. It was freezing but we had the reservoir to ourselves. This would be an amazing spot to camp at overnight for backpackers. Would highly recommend this hike!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

This is a classic hike. At about 7.5 miles RT, it's a great day hike that has it all: a rushing river, cascades right and left, convenient footbridges, minor creek crossings, a not-too-overwhelming elevation gain, historic artifacts, amazing rock formations, views galore, a large lake. There are lots of good campsites at the lake, if you're backpacking.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Very few other hikers out on a weekday in July 2016. Wonderful views and the roar of the rapids was a welcome background sound.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Pretty tough inclines but well worth the hard work. Camped along the reservoir, about halfway to Grouse Creek. Absolutely breathtaking views.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Me and the family with my grandson hiked this trail, really nice beatiful scene. as you walk this trail you will see PG and E equipment that was left when they bilt the dam.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Did this trail in May 2015 it has some pretty steep climbs in it and to the southern tip of the lake and back was over 10 miles making for a 6 hour day. Some really old equipment left on the trail from where they built it and some of the bridges and hauled equipment up to the dam. Great hike.

Monday, July 13, 2015

This is more than a 3-mile hike if you actually want to get down to the lake. 6 miles from the trailhead parking lot to the campsites at the lake west of Grouse Creek. It might be 3 miles from the wilderness sign to the lookout. Beautiful views, good fishing. A great hike, but just be aware that 3 miles isn't exactly accurate.

2 months ago

10 months ago

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Friday, June 24, 2016

Sunday, September 06, 2015

Friday, May 08, 2015

Wednesday, January 22, 2014