Explore the most popular trail running trails near Lewiston with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

An absolutely amazing hike. I went to Emerald and Sapphire lakes and spread it out between three days. Even though I was completely out of shape it was all doable and worth it. The trail starts out easy enough to get you warmed up and gets harder as it progressed.

backpacking
9 days ago

Had a great trip, this second weekend of June. The trail was in good maintenance, and clear all except two small patches of snow. Weather is pretty variable so make sure to check the forecast first!

Beautiful trail. Plenty of wildlife.

Amazing trail. Did this as a day hike Memorial Day 2018. Most people on trail were backpacking. Easily doable in a day. Steadily progressed uphill the whole way. Still a good amount of snow at high elevations on trail. Views are amazing and frequently changing. OF NOTE: this trail is ~ 1 mile longer than stated on this app but elevation change is close to true.

So far, I try to never go to the same TH twice. However, I loved this place so much that I cannot WAIT to go back.
The worst part of this trip, was that it got cut short.
There is a nice campground at...Alpine Lake, I believe. Lots of water sources along the way and creek crossings, which is always fun.
I would say the Morris Meadows Campground is more like 9 miles. It is definitely an ideal location. The second site out of the 3 is huge and had multiple fire rings from previous burns. It would be good for a large group or if a couple families get there.
We experience the most wonderful rain and thunderstorm while there. My friend left her tent open, which made for the immediate departure.
The hike to Emerald Lakes was an easy one, but we left our packs at camp. With our packs, probably would have been not as easy. Hah.
I definitely recommend. Also, just prefer this Wilderness. They aren't as strict. Hopefully, people don't leave big messes and force them to enforce stricter rules.

AmaZing trail! Well shaded for the first 10 miles. Tons of water. We brought our dog. We planned to go to alpine lake but the river crossing was too high to ford so we ended up camping near deer creek - 7 miles in - and day hiking to emerald and sapphire. Views of and from the lake reminded me of the eastern sierras alpine lakes. Saw two rattle snakes on the tail right before Caribou trail turn off. Saw tons of other garter snakes. Amazingly we got lucky and there were no mosquitoes and very few bugs. No poison oak. Sapphire lake is the deepest lake in the trinity alps at 200ft deep. Saw some beautiful golden trout swimming.

As for the debate about the mileage: Trail sign says 14 miles to Sapphire. All trails says 12.4 miles and outdoor project maps says 14 to emerald. As an avid backpacker and hiker and trail runner, I would say it felt more like 14miles.
100% recommend this trail!

road to trailhead in good condition

trail is challenging. our GPS put it closer to 10 miles RT but still 4500 gain.

there are a few areas where trail is overgrown with brush but nothing horrible.

great hike with amazing views of trinity alps, Shasta, lassen...highly recommend

Take caution around L Lake. We saw fresh bear tracks in the snow.

hiking
22 days ago

We visited during Memorial weekend and there were some flowers, but it will be amazing in a week or two. We went down to lake Summit to camp - great view, quiet location, although we had to take side trail to reach it. No permit is required for overnight camping, but you need one to have campfire. Scenery is amazing: a lot of snow on North facing slopes, water in all lakes has amazing color. Right now there is some snow when you hike the Loop, and a lot of tiny running creeks are using the trail as a pathway, so we lost the trail at least 3 times. Advice: definitely download the map! Also, it was hot. The first third has some shade, but the rest is brutally sunny. I cannot imagine doing it in July.

Great hike. Wear waterproof boots. Uphill battle at times, but well worth it.

Gorgeous hike! Steep but my three year old was able to hike it just fine! Parking lot gets parked up fast, start early.

This trail was definitely a beautiful hike. The view is amazing, and even the trail is pretty. However, many parts of the trail are overgrown, several times we almost got off track. It sincerely is all uphill climb. And just when you reach the top and think the hard work is done, remember that the sharp inclines you came up, you have to be careful and engaged on the way down.
Loved the hike and glad we did it. Definitely caught off guard at just how hard it was. If you like a challenge, this hikes for you!

hiking
1 month ago

Really great hike! Took about 3.5 hours to get to the top, and 1.5 hours to get down. Great scenery once you get to the top. This trail is a definite butt kicker though; your calfs will be burning pretty much from the start to the peak.

Have done this hike twice now, once to the lakes and this weekend just to Morris Meadows, as I was intending to do Alpine Lake on an overnighter, but Stuart Fork was too high to cross this early in the year, and I got a late start to the trailhead.

Overall, the trail is pretty moderate with mostly a gradual incline until the scramble below the lakes. As others have mentioned, however, the trail is longer than advertised. I submitted an edit recommendation for the trailhead lat /long to be revised, so hopefully that will help make the description closer to accurate. There are several areas with multiple established camp sites, i.e. where you veer left to do the Alpine Lake trail (there is a sign), off to the left around mile 7 where the trail has a decline back to the level of the river, and at the south end of the meadow, which is around mile 9, to name a few.

This time, my hike was very quiet, I only saw about a dozen people over the course of 2 days, but late last June, the trail was much more crowded, and the people in the camp site next to us got drunk and obnoxious in the evening which is, unfortunately, probably not that uncommon of an occurrence given how busy this trail can get during peak season (though still nothing compared to much of the Sierras or the Tahoe area). Still incredible though and absolutely worth the effort!

backpacking
1 month ago

Very difficult uphill battle but absolutely gorgeous along the way. Definitely worth it. Tons of wildflowers, and changes in scenery. Waterfalls, snow, fields of flowers, giant trees and granite peaks surrounding you. There were many switchbacks and intense elevation gain but the trail was well marked.

some snow past 3 miles, but mostly passable. no visible poison oak or ticks. a couple flowering plants but almost no flowers yet.

backpacking
2 months ago

In cooler weather, I would have rated this four-stars. The July we went though, we had 100 degree weather on that first day that has a lot of elevation gain, and I cannot say that was a good experience when I factor in the resulting blisters despite many efforts to prevent them. However, it was cooler and beautiful up at the four sapphire lakes with expansive vistas and many wildflowers.

hiking
3 months ago

If you're heading north on CA highway 3, drive 9.4 miles past the Rush Creek Road intersection. Granite Peak road is what you're looking for- a dirt road that will be on your left, across from BushyTail campground. Take this dirt road for about 3 miles (avoid turning on smaller logging turnoffs) until you dead end into the trail head.

The hike itself is splendidly steep, the first mile is foreshadowing for the remainder of the ascent. Switchbacks lead up through a beautiful forest.

The views become more enjoyable on the final 1/3 of the ascent. We hiked through patchy snow for the final 0.75 miles (in February, of an unseasonably warm year.)

Portions of the trail are a bit difficult to follow, especially on the second half of the ascent.

Views from the top include Mt Shasta (northeast), Lassen (east), a great view of the Trinity Alps, Shasta Bally (southeast in whiskey town), and Bully Choop (south).

A great intro to Trinity Alps hiking, as many of the other Trinity hikes are upwards of 14 miles.

My group of six backpacked this route in March of 2014 over a weekend. We started our hike late morning, camped at the Canyon Creek Lakes at the top, spent the entire next day hiking around the bowl and up to L Lake, and then hiked back the next day. March was a little early to be hiking up there and crossing the river (maybe too dangerous in hindsight). The river looked safe to cross on the way up, but on the way back the river had rose significantly and felt quite treacherous. The nights were brutally cold, but L Lake covered in snow was the most beautiful sight I've seen to this day. Climbing up to L Lake can be intimidating for some. I don't recommend bringing your backpack up there. Camp below and make a day hike up there. Did I mention we had the entire place to ourselves the whole time? Best part of it all. I highly recommend this trail; stunning views, waterfalls, rivers, beautiful boulders, and whimsical wooded areas. Be careful when you're hiking around on the rocks and boulders--they get slippery--and be cautious around flowing waters. Don't miss L Lake!

on Four Lakes Loop

backpacking
4 months ago

The most stunning views I have ever experienced, and incredibly varied. Every turn held a new view. We went mid August (2017) and there were still abundant wildflowers. We did this is two long days and one night. Took the loop clockwise and stopped to camp at Diamond lake, which is less than half way, but the second day is primarily downhill (although there are some surprise steep inclines past diamond lake, so don't get lured in once you start heading down). The trails were pretty busy, but we were one of only two groups that stayed at Diamond. Note: there are no good trees to hang a bear bag near diamond, so I would suggest a canister. Overall it was definitely difficult, but absolutely awe-inspiring. I would do this trip a thousand times.

hiking
6 months ago

I hiked this peak as a day hike with my dog in June 2017. I started too late in the morning by getting to trail head at 11am, I'd recommend an earlier start, especially in the summer. It was hot, and the first 3 miles did not offer streams for water for my dog - he was not a happy camper about the heat. The climb is steep and persistent, many switchbacks. An amazing work out though and good to build stamina! My legs were noodles by the time I reached the false summit... which made the climb to the true summit a bugger, but so worth it! The 360* view including Mt Shasta, Trinity and Whiskeytown Lake, and the snowcapped peaks deep in the Trinities was spectacular. Worth the climb! But I will probably never hike this peak again, once is enough for me.

I backpacked to Emerald and Sapphire Lakes as a 2 days backpacking trip with my dog near the end of October. It was stunning the entire way from trailhead to the lakes. Fall 2017 in the Trinities was a very vibrant autumn and this trail really showed off the yellows and oranges of the deciduous trees lining the trail. The contrast of dark green evergreens vs yellow maples vs the Stuart Fork creek was beautiful. I camped up at Emerald lake, just barely made it before sunset - I clocked 16 miles on my fitbit. There was only one other tent there. I passed only 2 other couples along the trail and they ended up camping at the meadows. Walking through forests, along a creek, through a random meadow, crossing a few small waterfalls and constant views of the valley's peaks. It was a very secluded hike. The trail is well maintained. The scramble up to Sapphire lake gives a beautiful view of the valley you just climbed up.

one of the best views

backpacking
8 months ago

Best hike I've done so far, excellent views!! This is a great backpacking experience. What you want to do this time of year is camp in the woods, set up camp and rest so when you get up early in the morning you can continue to complete the loop. The reason that I say this is because even though camping by the lake might seem like a great idea, it is very cold and windy and there is no wood to make a fire at night!!

Had an amazing 2 nights up here. Absolutely stunning. ❤️❤️❤️

The best solo backpacking trip I've done so far. Firstly, this is 15 miles from the trailhead to Emerald Lake or back. I used my fitbit to calculate the return route on my last day.

Here's what you should know:

1. Dirt Road Approach is about 2 miles so drive slow and definitely make sure you have tools just in case.
2. No service about 30 min before you even get to trinity county so be aware.
3. Trail has lots up ups and downs through the forest but so worth the hike, make sure you stay hydrated and stop for snacks/rest.
4. Hiking shoes are a must.
5. Ran into 6 snakes, but they slithered away so just watch where you step.
6. If you're camping at the Meadows for your first night, note that you will approach a sign right before it that breaks a trail in half. The right will say "trail", the left won't have a sign but head left into the meadows to camp. Going right will just take you further up the trail. Morris Meadows is also 9 miles from trailhead, just fyi if you're keeping track.
7. There are plenty of streams to refill your bottles.
8. Once past the meadows, its like walking through a jungle. Its sooo incredible.
9. I camped out at the top of Emerald lake next to the waterfall. Didn't run into a single animal. I definitely recommend it.
10. Keep your food secured and away from your camp, lots of bears (I've heard) and critters.
11. You can camp at several creeks/lakes before or past the meadows as well. Deer creek is great if you're going solo. The waterfall will put you to sleep in no time.
12. Lastly, enjoy the beauty of this magical place !!! I'm so glad I went.

hiking
10 months ago

Beautiful views and as described. I had a hard time finding/following the trail at the very end (to the Peak) but that could just be me. Some scrubery overgrowth but minimal.

Emerald and Sapphire Lakes are both amazing. Here is a trip report with pictures that I wrote for a backpacking trip out to the lakes and back. https://backpackersreview.wordpress.com/trip-reports/trinity-alps-emerald-lake/

on Four Lakes Loop

backpacking
10 months ago

Do an overnight this past weekend. This hike has amazing view, beautiful meadows full of vibrant colors. Its a steady up hill for most of the 6 miles. Its not an easy feat. Went up and over Deer Creek Pass down to Dear Lake, a few tents were up, no really good spots to camp. Even thou I was worn out by this time, we trekked on to Luella Lake, we camped here for the night, with only one other group. We had the lake to ourselves early am and took a dip. Watched the sunrise and headed on up to Diamond Lake, for me this was the highlight of all the lakes. Another steep trudge up the switch backs and up Siligo Peak, very sketchy route the last 300 feet, but bagged the peak. Head back to Deer Creek Lake and begin the 6 mile journey home. This was one intense, hard hike. But worth the blood sweat and tears. There are only a few ideal spots by each lake. The parking lot was full, but didn't run in to much more than a handful of ppl........

Went a few weeks ago with some friends and it was a beautiful hike with views of mountains and waterfalls popping out as the trail turned and wound its way up the mountains, a gorgeous crystal clear green river that followed us for much of the way, and the beautiful granite and mountain-surrounded lakes at the end. The two less ideal aspects of the trip were the facts that the Upper and Lower Canyon Lakes are completely exposed with very little shade, so spending a day up there can be quite brutal (the water is freezing cold so you can't really stay in there for too long), and the hordes of people all along the trail and at the lake. it was very difficult to find a campsite and you were always within view and earshot of other groups, not to mention the strain that must put on the ecology. On the way back, we stopped by the crystalline river to have lunch, but it was marred by the smell of human waste. Please bury your waste and keep it off the trail and definitely at least 100 feet away from water.

Load More