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

The lakes and creeks were teeming with mosquitoes. Even with deet and smokey campfires, I got about fifty bites, mostly near the creek crossing where we camped around mile 6.

Gem lake (10mi) was free of mosquitoes around 1pm and was lovely to swim in. I expect it would have been a nice place to camp without getting eaten so badly.

Grouse Lake (15mi) was also not too bad, but still not great.

Lots of horse poop on the trail.

Pretty hike but lots of mosquitos, my sister and I got eaten alive towards the end of the hike.

Parts of the trails were misleading. But overall it has beautiful scenery with some wildlife added to the trip. The hike is for sure over 6.7 miles. Also you need to be aware of some rock climbing involved. Overall I would recommend nice trail.

Was rather smokey when we started, but got better later in the morning. Challenging, but the worth the trek. Great view from the top!

Even in late summer with little flowing water the pools and vistas make the hike more than worthwhile!

backpacking
13 days ago

gorgeous hike with wildflowers and a big green lake. the stream crossings are super manageable this time of year but be aware of high risk for forest fires. we backpacked in and had the whole lake to ourselves. dog friendly!

Wonderful trail for all experience levels. Some friends and I went on a two night backpacking trip this past weekend and enjoyed the scenery regardless of the smoke from the fires nearby. Hope to go again soon when fire season is over.

Awesome hike and very scenic!

To say it was beautiful doesn't do it justice. Very scenic would definitely be doing this one again. Lots of mosquito's. Bring DEET! I think we fell in right after they hatched. However each day seemed a little better. Had a great time. No fish in these lakes. Plenty of frogs though. To summit all up, if you can go, go!

First time hiking in Pinecrest and I absolutely loved Cleos bath trail. It's not too clearly marked in some areas, you can lose the trail. Some people are nice enough to spray paint arrows but they are fading. The swimming hole at the top is the best part of the hike!

We spent two nights at Chewing Gum Lake, July 25-27, with a day hike to Toejam Lake in between. Chewing Gum is a gorgeous lake, not cold this time of year, with great campsites. There were some mosquitoes at dawn and dusk but nothing severe--none at all during the middle of the day. The hike from the trailhead to Chewing Gum is a very good trail almost all the way and goes over two moderate ridges. The trail from Chewing Gum to Toejam is also mostly good except for the last 100 meters or so getting to Toejam, which is rocky and not too well defined. Toejam Lake is also gorgeous. The only good source of water between Chewing Gum and Toejam is at Whitesides Meadow, about halfway, so plan ahead--it was very hot out in the sun the day we hiked it.

hiking
26 days ago

Trail was absolutely breathtaking. So many beautiful wild flowers. A few very challenging areas where climbing or crossing creeks required the help of friends. Definitely worth the challenge!

beautiful area - horrible mosquitoes right now... glad we brought cards, was confined to the tent for relief. trail was tough for a flat lander but great views.

Great summer hike! Rough at times but the swimming hole in the end made it very rewarding.

One of the best I’ve done yet. The reward at the end is awesome. Trail needs a improvement in some areas. Almost lost the trail in certain areas but over all is a great trail.

Definitely got lost coming back down and went to the left instead of staying to the right and ended up on a very scary ledge. Just make sure you stay to the RIGHT when you head back down and look for the stacking stones. Fun hike and very rewarding at the top. Highly recommend this hike but be careful.

hiking
1 month ago

I went to Blue Ridge Lake today. if you don't mind a little high elevation and a little bit of rock scrambling this is an absolutely beautiful Trail flowers were everywhere however I will warn you to parking lot is fairly small. this off limits the amount of people going out to the lake which is nice because it's not a big late but it is stunning against the mountains in the snow.

We day hiked to Chewing Gum Lake from the Crabtree trailhead and back on July 10. It's slightly over 4 miles each way with a big elevation gain going out--almost 2000 feet over the first 2 miles or so. Most of it isn't very steep but it keeps coming at you. Most of the hike is in partial shade until you get very close to the lake and the wildflowers were lovely. The lake is very pretty and was a great place to have lunch. We found no mosquitoes at Chewing Gum near noon, and there was only one area on the way where the bugs got bad. Leaving the lake, staying on the trail requires some attention. This is a harder way to get to Chewing Gum than from Gianelli (more climbing) but very nice and very quiet. We saw only two other people during our 5-hour outing.

Beautiful Hike!! Struggled with hiking in the high elevation but so worth it.

Backpacked the loop clockwise two weeks ago. As soon as we hit the pass before Piute Lake, mosquitos became unbearable. Camped the first night at Gem Lake and regretted that decision. We woke up early and had a great second day fishing Rainbows in Buck Meadow Creek and Cherry Creek West Fork. Camped at Grouse Lake second night and bugs were still bad but much better than Gem. We caught three Brown at dusk and one Rainbow at sunrise. Can’t wait to check out this area again without the skeeters.

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.

hiking
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.

it was awesome! 4 hard spots especially with my dog

hiking
1 month ago

Did this hike a year ago and I’m so excited to do it again! The views and geologic history of the canyon fascinate me and the lake itself was so serene and peaceful. I recommend this to everyone I meet!

Definitely Not Year Round trail!! Who's managing this site. it's Snowed in in the winter.

Blue Canyon Lake is a stunning turquoise blue - worth the climb! Please be prepared for many stream crossings and getting your feet wet this time of year(June/July); trusty hiking boots are a must on this slippery gravel/talus trail. This trail is not for the faint of heart as there are some sections that require light scrambling. I don't recommend this hike for beginners primarily due to the stream crossings, scrambling sections and the ~1200ft gain in a short 1.8 miles. Also, the trail is not well-marked with signage and there are a few deceiving pseudo trails - follow the cairns and you'll be just fine! With the right preparation and determination, I do think anyone could ultimately tackle this breathtaking trail. Please be safe and always pack out what you pack in. Enjoy!

We were prepared for hoardes of mosquitos but it wasn’t bad! We stayed at the north end of the lake in a great little site. The bugs were a little annoying in the morning and a little bit at sundown but between permethrin, deet and picaridin they left us alone.

Others who had been at other lakes said the mosquitos were so bad they were basically trapped in their tents, even during the day.

This is an awesome beginner trip.

We took a day hike to Y Meadow Lake Greg bugs were worse there) and then came back cross country over the ridge to Chewing Gum. With topi maps it wasn’t too hard, even for a first-timer on the trip.

hiking
1 month ago

This hike is gorgeous, but the reviews and distance on here are a tad misleading. We started at the trailhead parking lot which is 1/4 mile from the general store. From the general store it is around 1.5 miles to the actual trailhead past the campground. From the trailhead it is around 7.5 miles to Kennedy Lake. Round trip to the lake from the trailhead parking lot was a little over 18 miles.
As far as terrain, around mile 2 there is some steep hiking (not too bad) but after that it levels out. It is mostly sand you’re walking on past that point due to the horses breaking down the trail. The last few miles are through meadows so there is some wetland you’re walking through. As you approach the old log cabin the trail forks; I recommend going left if you’re going to the lake and not the camp area. The trail is a little dryer and easier to follow to the lake. If you’re setting up camp then go right and you’ll see all the tents (you must cross the creek to get to camp, but you do not have to if you’re going to the lake). Also, there isn’t much shade next to the lake unless you walk around the the far side.
All in all a gorgeous hike, but it’s quite a long hike for just a day. Recommend bringing a filter for the water, it’s nice and cold and refreshing! Would be a beautiful place to camp and spend the weekend, can’t beat the views!

Great trail and very rewarding swimming hole at the end of the trail

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