South Fork Trail to Dry Lake is a 11.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Angelus Oaks, California that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 11.8 miles Elevation Gain: 2,250 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

camping

cross country skiing

hiking

horseback riding

snowshoeing

bird watching

running

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

snow

If you're not used to high altitude hiking, this hike may be challenging. The Ranger station has the most updated map, but even then don't believe the switchbacks it displays; there are about nine or ten at the four mile mark just past the junction of three streams.

backpacking
5 days ago

I did this backpack trip over the memorial weekend. FYI, for day hikes no permits needed. For overnights a permit is required. Go to SGWA.org for the latest information. It’s a fantastic overnight hike with plenty of water at Dry Lake/Lodgepole camps. Pack it in, pack it out.

hiking
7 days ago

Great hike! Beautiful day!

Highly recommend this one. Steady elevation climb to the lake with great views of San Gregorio along the way. A few spots the trail is still muddy from snow runoff. Good amount of water at the lake as well. As decent amount of people hiking the trail but not too crowded. Make sure to wear good hiking shoes and bring lots of water.

hiking
16 days ago

Great Trail! Beautiful weather and views once you hit the final switchbacks. Yes, there are quite a bit of people hiking up to dry lake, but the earlier you start the less you see.

backpacking
17 days ago

Great first backpacking trip! 3 day 2 night backpack to dry lake to camp and then attempted to summit San G from Dry lake the next day. A few streams at the bottom before the switchback that lead up to Dry Lake. Please no campfires!! It’s still really dry up there and it’s still recovering from the last wildfire. Great day hike some bugs/flys on the trail.

hiking
blowdown
bugs
muddy
no shade
rocky
19 days ago

Nice hike. Bugs are only for first couple miles. The lake was really nice, sat and had lunch no bugs. There is one small muddy section. I recommend going early in the morning as there is very little shade for at least half of the trail. Pretty busy trail.

backpacking
blowdown
rocky
snow
21 days ago

Backpacked May 9-10, 2020. No snow until the last quarter before reaching Dry Lake. There is still some snow that's melting, but plenty of dry spots to camp on. Didn't go up San G as I heard snow is still to deep. No snow gear required up to Dry Lake. There were 4 opportunities to fill up on water the way there including at Lodgepole Springs. There were a few fallen trees that were easily navigable. Please do not have a campfire. An entitled backpacker across the lake started one when the permit explicitly says not to. The area is a tinder box, don't be that one person.

hiking
rocky
22 days ago

Weather was perfect today. Achievable distance for a day hike and the switch backs made the last part to the lake feel less straight up. Peekaboo caps of snow on the mountain tops made for some great views. Passed some backpackers on their way down (everyone had face coverings and allowed for distance to pass). Looking forward to backing and camping the next time up.

hiking
bugs
muddy
no shade
over grown
rocky
snow
22 days ago

It is hard, be sure to wear good hiking boots, and bring water and snacks.

Good hike during the pandemic with most trails being close right now there’s plenty of parking and there’s very little snow left on the trail just a couple patches and there’s a couple areas were trees are down and you can go around them it’s a nice 12 mile out and back walk and there still water in the lake

hiking
bugs
icy
muddy
snow
23 days ago

First time up this beauty. Adventure pass required. Lots of parking spaces. Arrived at 6:50, 1/3 of lot still open for parking. Port o potty available. One bathroom in building at parking lot open. This trail begins with a steep incline, steadies out, mild incline in the middle. Beautiful meadow about 3+ miles up with 2 historical cabins to peek into. Trail climbs higher yet, a bit of snow to hike through, lots of water crossings (nothing to worry about, you won't get wet) the weather was absolutely gorgeous. Sunny, actually a bit higher temps than what we're predicted. Many people (approx. 40) on our 11.9 mile trek up & back. Many backpackers at the lake, most people had masks on & everyone gave wide berths & respected one another's space. Great trail. Beautiful views. Did not know it did a loop up dry lake /to San G down to dollar lake & back to car. Would love to try that, San G is one of few leaks I've yet to conquer. Perfect day! Recommend for families w/ children 12+,doggies, anyone looking to get a good butt work out & have a great day!

backpacking
23 days ago

Backpacked May 9th to the 10th, 2020. Busy trail going up. Everyone for the most part is wearing a mask, or at least stepping off trail to allow others to pass with a reasonable amount of distance. Little to no snow up to Dry Lake, so no snow gear needed. We had plans on hiking Mt G, but heard and saw up Mine Shaft Saddle that the trail was untraceable without snow shoes to guide the waist deep snow still persisting. As others have mentioned, there are 4 opportunities to fill up on water on the way up including Lodgepole Springs. Such a nice hike and campground. Echoing "Hikin Joe's" fire sentiment, I 100% agree. Not cool considering all you see walking in are burnt trees and signs that say no campfires.

hiking
28 days ago

Hiked this past Saturday, May 2nd. Got an early start, around 6:30am. Trail mostly free of snow. Only snow about 1/4 from the end, but we’ll packed. Just watch your step. There are about a half dozen downed trees easy to navigate around. Beautiful Spring day. Only saw a handful of hikers going up, and only a couple dozen going down. All were keeping their distance and most wearing masks. Parking lot was clean and a porta potty available. No wildflowers yet, but a couple ducks in the lake, which is thawed. Always a great hike. Enjoy.

28 days ago

absolutely great Peter

bird watching
28 days ago

Wonderful hike! Trail conditions were wonderful! Just a little mud about half way and snow at the very end but not a lot and easy to navigate. Bathrooms and trash still closed at the beginning! 10.3 miles to the lake didn’t go all the way around. Nice and cool!

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