Scotts Flat Trail

MODERATE 40 reviews

Scotts Flat Trail is a 6.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Nevada City, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
761 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

snow

Nice shady hike through Ponderosa Pines, descending from Highway 20 to Scotts Flat Reservoir. This trail is a well maintained, moderate, out-and-back, starting at highway 20 and descending to Scotts Flat Reservoir. It is used by both hikers and mountain bikers, with nicely banked curves and lots of well maintained variation to keep the mountain bikers happy. The grades are not too steep as the entire descending portion of the trail is a series of switchbacks. Bicyclists may find it more enjoyable to take the trail on the way down and ride back up on Scotts Flat Road. At the reservoir there are boat rentals and a small bait shop with drinks (if it's open). There is also a small store at the campground, which has drinks and snacks.

hiking
11 days ago

Really nice trail but hard to find the entrance. You can’t see it from the main road and need to follow a side trail to get to the trail entrance sign. Also, really fast mountain bikers go zooming around turns and it’s hard to see them ahead of time. So this trail would be best for biking and not so much on foot.

trail running
19 days ago

There are a lot of switch backs but the trail is well shaded, maintained and is dog friendly. Not many views of the lake but still a nice run. Only a few mountain bikes, though I started about 9 am. YES there are a lot of switch backs.

25 days ago

Great hike. It was actually 8.4 for us.

1 month ago

Just a beautiful peaceful hike that’s well maintained. This trail is a must. We saw a northern rubber boa on the trail also.

1 month ago

This is a well maintained trail, just a few mountain bikers for traffic. Harmony Ridge Market has a full deli and espresso bar. We had 8 mi. Round trip. 4 miles moderate down and 4 back up and just a few muddy spots. Lots of wildflowers coming up.

hiking
2 months ago

Started on the trail at 10:30am and made it back by 1:20pm. We walked slowly, made a few stops, and continued a bit past the end of the trail before we turned back. It was muddy in a few places towards the bottom, but great hike for dogs! Came across more bikers than walkers, and the weather was perfect.

hiking
2 months ago

We started our hike a little late (around 2pm) and got to the lake around 4pm since we made some stops along the way. Only had about 30 min to enjoy the beautiful sights down at the lake before we started losing sunlight. Not much rest, so the hike back up was a little tough.

Overall a great experience. Well-maintained trail and lightly trafficked (Friday afternoon). Parking is limited, so plan accordingly.

Definitely going to do this again and camp down at the lake overnight.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful trail. At the end of the trail we continued on down to the waters edge. Total round trip for our group was 9 miles.

mountain biking
4 months ago

Patches of melting show making for a somewhat soggy trail - to be expected in January. Nice trail - would be awesome when dry. Didn’t see the bridge in the picture. We parked across the street at pioneer trailhead. Trail starts right off to the left of the driveway into harmony lodge.

6 months ago

Lucked out with warm, sunny December weather. Well-maintained trail in beautiful forrest. Happened to be staying at Harmony Ridge Lodge which is right at the trail entrance. Couldn’t be more convenient than that!

hiking
8 months ago

Went over the weekend. Be wary of wildlife but very well maintained trail and a fairly easy walk other than the distance. While I was hiking this trail I got about 2/3 of the way there and was told that there was a mama bear and her cubs drinking at the lake. Didn’t want to disrupt the bears and cause a problem so I turned around. Frustrated because I drove from an hour and a half away but I guess that’s part of being in the outdoors.

hiking
8 months ago

Easy. Few MTBers. Shaded. No bugs. Very clean, well-maintained trail. Get there early as the parking fills up. Will try and camp and hike next time. Great area.

9 months ago

Fun... lots of switchbacks. Nice break at the lake shore.

hiking
10 months ago

This trail is smooth & peaceful, there was hardly anyone hiking so it was nice being alone without a whole lot of traffic. I'm definitely going back.

hiking
Monday, June 19, 2017

The entrance is difficult to find. Park at the store on the North side of hwy 20 and walk East about a block. The trail starts at the Tahoe forest sign. Great family hike on Father's Day.

hiking
Sunday, April 30, 2017

Pretty solid hike. Really nice and manageable trail, although really muddy and a little washed out in a lot of spots near the bottom of the trail. Was my first hike on this app, so didn't realize the start of he hike was the highest elevation and the climbing was all on the way back, but still good. Forest was super peaceful and the lake was stunning.

Monday, April 03, 2017

An absolute blast up or down!

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