Showers Lake via the PCT

MODERATE 35 reviews
#24 of 114 trails in

Showers Lake via the PCT is a 9.9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near South Lake Tahoe, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
9.9 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1358 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

trail running

walking

lake

views

wild flowers

wildlife

Directions from South Lake Tahoe: Take Highway 50 south to Highway 89 and turn left. Continue to the intersection of Highway 89 and 88 and turn right. Continue past the Carson Pass Sno-Park one mile, turn left on the dirt road and park in the dirt parking area. The trailhead is located on the other side of the highway, just across from the parking area.

backpacking
8 days ago

Amazing views, great trail. We hiked this from Carson pass and it was about 12-14 miles total. Even in the middle of summer, there were snow here and there and it got pretty cold at night. During the day it was great and people were coming up to fish in the lake. Beautiful spot, we will be going back

hiking
4 months ago

Amazing hike!! Beautiful meadows and a very enjoyable moderate hike. Some wild flowers still in bloom but Spring or early Summer would be a better time for full blooms. A little snow left and lots of little creeks. Showers Lake is gorgeous! It's a definite must see/do hike! I will return to hike more of the area!!

backpacking
5 months ago

Amazingly beautiful hike through the wildflowers!

5 months ago

Went back today to check on wildflowers which were spectacular! They will be still near the Peak bloom for another 7-10days.

backpacking
5 months ago

I was surprised by this trail, thinking it wouldn't be particularly scenic or impressive. But it was a wonderful, beautiful trip with a different landscape every mile or so. We took my brother, who is a first time backpacker, and this trail was just perfect both in terms of exertion and introducing him to the California outdoors. Great mountain views of Round Top and other snow covered mountains in the Tahoe region, wildflowers of every color and shape, lovely meadows and basins to walk through, and Showers lake at the end of it provided good campsites. Mosquitos weren't too bad when we went, at least at the lake, but the meadow the second day had a few mosquitos and biting flies. Not a ton of elevation gain (only at the beginning and at the end), since you're already starting so high up, so most of the hike is a leisurely stroll through beautiful flower-covered fields with creeks and volcanic mountains all around. Watch out for the afternoon thunderstorms, as they do happen everyday and on the second day we were hailed on (lightly) and had lightening flashing around us.

backpacking
5 months ago

I was surprised by this trail, thinking it wouldn't be particularly scenic or impressive. But it was a wonderful, beautiful trip with a different landscape every mile or so. We took my brother, who is a first time backpacker, and this trail was just perfect both in terms of exertion and introducing him to the California outdoors. Great mountain views of Round Top and other snow covered mountains in the Tahoe region, wildflowers of every color and shape, lovely meadows and basins to walk through, and Showers lake at the end of it provided good campsites. Mosquitos weren't too bad when we went, at least at the lake, but the meadow the second day had a few mosquitos and biting flies. Not a ton of elevation gain (only at the beginning and at the end), since you're already starting so high up, so most of the hike is a leisurely stroll through beautiful flower-covered fields with creeks and volcanic mountains all around. Watch out for the afternoon thunderstorms, as they do happen everyday and on the second day we were hailed on (lightly) and had lightening flashing around us.

hiking
5 months ago

Trail head is very close to the Carson Pass visitor center, I believe it is used as a snow park in the winter. Lot is paved with two vaulted toilets. This is a beautiful hike, wild flowers are in full bloom. No snow on trail but snow still in area, rock hopped creek crossings. Decided to go to Meiss Lake as it has water this year. Lake is about a mile before Showers lake to the right at a creek crossing. The AllTrails map has it incorrectly labeled as Metts Lake. Did a bit of cross country across a meadow to get there, meadow was swampy still so shoes got very wet but it was worth it. My GPS clocked it at nine miles round trip.

5 months ago

This is one of my favorite hikes in the Sierra Tahoe area. The combination of geology and landscape never disappoints and today was no exception. Clear trail with no special gear needed but check weather for afternoon thunderstorms. The wildflowers are really starting to pop and should remain excellent for most of August. The Upper Truckee has plentiful snow fields to keep water running nicely. Check out recently posted photos and then get out there and enjoy!

backpacking
6 months ago

Trail is well defined and easy to follow. Does still have snow on the trail in some areas which increases difficulty a little. Snow is melting quickly though. Trail is muddy so bring appropriate boots. (Unfortunately, some have made new trails because they don't want to get dirty/muddy.) Creeks/streams running high - so suggest water shoes as you will get wet during one of them on the north side of the meadow after the cabin. Otherwise, great time with beautiful views.

6 months ago

Didn't get to Showers lake on July 10th. But 2.5 miles in I found a lot of wild flowers. And I am glad I brought sandals for stream crossing.

backpacking
6 months ago

did not make it all the way to showers lake on a 4th of july 2017 hike since there was so much snow! everything past the first few miles are completely snow packed.
great camping site at the base of little round top though.

backpacking
10 months ago

Pretty moderate trail. The beginning and the end have some climbs but a beautiful scenery the entire trail. We went later in the summer, but I've been told that Spring time is the best with all the spring flowers. The lake itself is more of a "mushy" lake so you might get a little muddy if you go in, but there's lots of camping spots around the lake if you walk a little. We went during a non burning month, but one of our neighbors felt like they didn't have to follow the rules so our camp was encompassed in smoke for the night. There's a beautiful view looking down to Tahoe.

hiking
Saturday, August 13, 2016

Nice hike. Lots of people!
GPS registered 10.3 miles.

hiking
Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Absolutely quiet, absolutely gorgeous.

camping
Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Amazing!!! We love every second of it!!!! Bring mosquito repellent tho.

hiking
Monday, July 25, 2016

Stunning wildflowers and mountain views. Lots of water along the way. Beautiful hike.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Great hike! Pretty steep at times but seeing Showers Lake is worth the climb.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Beautiful hike! A little challenging with some steep climbing but it's all worth it when you get to Showers Lake. Go up to the rocks by the trail to Echo Summit for breathtaking views and a glimpse of Lake Tahoe.

hiking
Saturday, July 18, 2015

For sheer ratio of reward to effort, this hike rocks. The wild flowers in mid July were stunning. After a steep and sunny, but short, climb at mile 1.5 you are rewarded by views of distant Tahoe, then a flat walk through the valley of wildflowers. The last half mile up to Showers was another little climb, this one partly shaded, and the lake is pretty with many nice camp sites. Dog had an awesome time.

hiking
2 months ago

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