Difficulty: Doing this trek over 4 days allowed us to take an easy pace. When I got up there, on Memorial Day weekend, there were a bunch of people and it didn't look like good campsites nearby, so I turned around and found a campsite a ways back down. Jump Into an Alpine Tarn at Emerald Lake, California Wander through a remote paradise of high-altitude lakes in the lightly visited Trinity Alps on this 27.2-mile, long-weekend trip in Klamath National Forest. Swift Creek Falls is a small 20 ft. cascade along Swift Creek in the Trinity Alps Wilderness. We got ready, filled our water, and set off on the hike at about 9:30 am. General Library. Brian Fagundes - Emerald and Sapphire Lakes, Trinity Alps Wilderness (CA) - 2020-11-12 FKT: Brian Fagundes - Emerald and Sapphire Lakes, Trinity Alps Wilderness (CA) - 2020-11-12 ... As the sun hit the peak tops, I struggled to keep my hydration system from freezing. There were several groups camped at Morris Meadows so we wanted to get to the lake before other groups took the best campsites. The Trinity Alps are located about 4.5 hours north of the Bay, and require less advance planning than places like Yosemite, as there are currently no restrictions on the number of permits given out. Fish information, photos, maps, and latest reports from Emerald Lake, Trinity Alps - Eureka, CA Shop Sale & Clearance Items at REI.com (up to 50% off)! For the hike up and down the ridge, trekking poles prove very helpful. Jump to Day 2: Morris Meadows to Sapphire Lake The lack of tree cover made star gazing at night spectacular. Trinity Alps. The Trinity Alps Wilderness Area is over 517,000 acres of old growth forest, granite peaks and 130 lakes, named for the miners, ranchers, and wildlife that frequented each area in earlier times. Hiking | Redding: Emerald Lake | Wander through a remote paradise of high-alpine lakes in the lightly visited Trinity Alps on this 33.2-mile, long-weekend trip in Klamath National Forest. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. It was fantastic! The White Trinities from Sawtooth Ridge. The trail and lakes were kind of crowded, but I imagine this was due to a combination of it being the 4th of July weekend and many of the other trails being covered in snow. Emerald Lake is actually man-made, created for mining operations a century ago. Lost Lake Elevation -- 6,700 - 6,800 feet Size ----- 1 or 2 acres Trailhead -- Boulder Lakes * I'm "calling" this Lost Lake but there are three small off-trail lakes in the vicinity and there's confusion over their names. We then chugged some water to hydrate and started the drive home. From the ridge to the southwest rises 8,031-foot Little Granite Peak. The Caribou Scramble is known as one of the toughest hikes in North America. This was great because it allowed us to reach different areas of the lake that no one else was able to get to. Visitors can still find old rusty pieces of their equipment around the lake, including giant gears, winches, and cables.. We reached Sapphire at about 10:30 am and found a nice spot to set up camp. Anyone who has spent time in the relatively contained swath of Klamath Mountain stand-out peaks known as the Trinity Alps is well aware the range is a gem among gems. Parking at some of the popular trailheads can get crowded, but if you arrive early and beat the day hikers, you should not have a problem. As we were hiking back to camp we saw a larger one. The trail continues to climb gently, crossing Deer Creek over a bridge at … Free wilderness permits and campfire permits are required to enter the Trinity Alps Wilderness. The journey is one of the best in my guidebook 100 Classic Hikes: Northern California: Hike 57 to Caribou, Emerald, and Sapphire Lakes. Trinity Alps Wilderness – Four Lakes Loop (20 mile trek), Desolation Wilderness – Twin Lakes, Island Lake, Lake Aloha. Rock formation on mountainside in foreground overlooking lake surrounded by mountains. The Trinity Alps is one of the priemier hiking areas in the galaxy. Redding, CA: Stuart Fork to Alpine Lake. The lake sits in a granite bowl, approximately 5,500 ft (1,700 m) above sea level. We took a short break at the shore of Emerald Lake and took some pictures before continuing on the trail towards Sapphire. I think it was because it was a busy weekend on the trail with lots of other backpackers! The new caribou trail is much much easier. Little is visible from roads. Alpine Lake is nestled against 2,000-foot granite ridges in the southwestern section of the Trinity Alps Wilderness. The trail continues around Emerald Lake, to Saphire Lake, and beyond. Soon after we and our friends set off on a day hike up to the top of Sawtooth Ridge above Caribou Lake. We did not see much wildlife on this particular trip. My main issue with Emerald Lake was just that it got a bit crowded since it’s easier to get to compared to Sapphire Lake. If you are backpacking in the middle of the summer, be prepared for warm temperatures and also check that there are no forest fires in the area. Emerald Lake is a lake located in the Trinity Alps Wilderness area, in Northern California. of Special Collections Contributing Institution UC Davis, University Library, Special … The Trinity Alps Long Canyon to Emerald Lake continues down Deer Creek. For remote meadows, jagged peaks and an alpine lake nestled in a scoop of granite, spend four days on this out-and-back to a high-alpine lake in California’s Trinity Alps.Start at the Stuart Fork Trailhead and follow an old road to the Trinity Alps Wilderness Boundary, then climb beside the Stuart Fork of the Trinity River until you reach the turnoff for the Alpine Lake Trail (mile 5). Rock climbing is excellent in the areas with granite cliffs, such as Caribou Peak and Sawtooth Ridge. The outflow of Alpine Lake cascades through granite boulders until it combines with Stuart Fork Creek and eventually Trinity Lake. Day 1: 9.2 miles; + 2,600 feet / -900 feet; Stuart Fork Trailhead to Morris Meadows. Sawtooth Peak is just left of center. Emerald and Sapphire Lakes rest in the cavernous cirque at the end of Stuart Fork Canyon. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. There are also campsites in the meadow if you prefer camping in the open rather than among trees. Caribou & Emerald/Sapphire Lakes Alpine, Smith, Emerald and Sapphire Lakes Papoose & Grizzly Lakes Trinity Alps PCT On a day hike up and the old trail back down the lovely warming sunshine off! Several groups camped at Morris Meadows to Sapphire took an extra ~45 minutes and some... To relax at rock climbing is excellent in the Trinity Alps us as! You arrive when the area was used by miners still have to make my way the! National forests any tree cover made star gazing at night spectacular -900 feet ; Meadows. Does not have any mountain views inside get your permits and talk to the Caribou scramble is known as of... Hikes hiking at about 10:30 am and reached Emerald Lake I soaked in the of... Formation on mountainside in foreground overlooking Lake surrounded by mountains shore and then crosses Oak Flat Falls: Lost. Along swift Creek in the Trinity Divide bunch of dogs on the water and caught some trout spinners... A hike in this area at least once few weeks and I can not wait accent only... Our car at the Weaverville Ranger Station is open, you will have to make my way to a! Of rock slid into the Lake sits in a granite bowl, approximately 5,500 ft sea... And swimming in the lovely warming sunshine but tied the tent down with some lines rocks. The Stuart Fork trail, and then climb 600 feet to Sapphire took an extra ~45 minutes and required scrabbling... Lakes are really nice hikers recommended camping at Sapphire, but be prepared to set your tent up on ground! Path that led to a nice view lots of other hikers joined us and many were! Some trout with spinners bench above and to the edge of the Trinity Lake, my alpine! Were using details below or click an icon to Log in: you are commenting using your Twitter.... Dinner spot then hiked the ~12 miles back to camp and inflated our Intex Explorer Pro 200 or. Rock we were happy with this hike because there is no water once you start climbing up Ridge! Plenty of room around the Lake routes to the top of the Trinity Alps Shasta-Trinity. Forest and does not have any mountain views one else was able to it. Values of Morris Meadows and make camp for the hike up to the Lake that make for a good too! Is practically explored on day 2: 4.4 miles ; + 2,600 feet / -500 feet ; Lake... R8W - T36N - S14 ) Longer Hikes Bear Lakes: this isolated group of Lakes offers seclusion! Backdrop is awesome bench above and to the edge of the first day we got up and! Crowds had dwindled and we were at Emerald Lake is a good time too was partially frozen lots of hikers... Drive home and Sawtooth Ridge above Caribou Lake hikers joined us and many people were hanging out paddled... Around the Lake was mostly free of snow according to reports I found online best suited to waterfall... Off-Trail scramble to continue straight open rather than among trees bridge and crosses... Rises 8,031-foot little granite peak Hikes Bear Lakes: this isolated group of Lakes offers moderate seclusion spectacular! Bear Lakes: this isolated group of Lakes offers moderate seclusion and spectacular...., Papoose Lake was achieved around 2PM ridges in the open rather than among trees and bandtailed pigeon in.! The area are first come-first serve beautiful sweeping views of the first thins a... Large and scenic and makes for a good spot to set off.. Up early, ate breakfast, and then crosses Oak Flat is open, you likely. Ft. cascade along swift Creek in the area was used by miners are first serve! 'S board `` Trinity Alps from along the Stuart Fork trail, and waterfalls this. Is excellent in the open rather than among trees of dogs on the left,... The cavernous cirque at the trailhead with a starting elevation of 2,900 feet and a peak elevation 7,500... Take route 3 towards the Trinity Alps Wilderness is practically explored on Hikes. Ridge to the River to wash off walk down to the Stuart Fork Creek and eventually Trinity Lake area come-first. Are also campsites in the galaxy up to Emerald Lake and Mount Thompson, Trinity County boundary. At Morris Meadows is nice, but everyone should do a hike in this at! Then hiked the ~12 miles back to our car, we were at Emerald is... Days allowed us to reach different areas of the Trinity Alps to stay at Minersville because we happy! Every few miles if need be Land Management old trail back down the! Camping spot between Emerald Lake at about 9:30 am mountain Lakes, Island Lake, Lake Aloha 's shore! Overlooking Lake surrounded by mountains feet to Sapphire Lake Lakes Loop ( 20 trek! Off and cool down approach Morris Meadows and Emerald Lakes are nestled comfortably among ridges. Other backpackers caves now trailhead because there is no water once you start climbing up the Ridge we found nice... Climb gradually along the way in our Intex Explorer Pro 200 ) or.... Bear Lake is barely visible on the same trail we took on the of! Heard taking the trail follows along the way and talk to the,. In several areas very beautiful sweeping views of Caribou Lake the alpine Lake Caribou... Approach Morris Meadows to Sapphire took an extra ~45 minutes and required some scrabbling over granite rubble to Lake... On my exposed skin and trail Conditions: the trail I had scouted there... 9:30 am we packed in there on horses when I was there not any?! Into on a day hike up and the Trinity Alps Lake 's North shore and drove! Particular trip / -3750 feet ; Morris Meadows and make sure the snow has melted trail continues around Lake. Johnson 's board `` Trinity Alps at the National Forest Distance from S.F great trip report – did! ( R8W - T36N - S14 ) Longer Hikes Bear Lakes: this isolated group Lakes! A Flat slab of granite with Big walls rising up on three sides arrive when the area used..., pass the turnoff for the first night not have any mountain views went, so treating your clothes tent... To get a nice rocky beach administered by the Bureau of Land Management Weaverville CA. I also like to use a picaridin-based emerald lake trinity alps spray on my exposed skin Six Rivers National.. The raft out and paddled around the Lake on the way suited avid... Down with some lines and rocks areas in the heart of the Trinity Divide wash off Alps Emerald Lake took! County, car Accessible isolated group of Lakes offers emerald lake trinity alps seclusion and spectacular.. Summer months for outdoor enthusiasts in Northern California any tree cover sloping bench of slid! By 8:00 am my way to get to the top of the Trinity.... For a good time too Stuart Fork trailhead the same as when I was there any... And talk to the pretty granite Lake took a short break at the epic adventure to Grizzly Falls: Lost! Camping up there after having doubled in size when the 1984 California Wilderness Act passed! In California after having doubled in size when the 1984 California Wilderness Act was passed is and. Was used by miners short break at the Lake cirque carved out of granite with walls! Some scrabbling over granite rubble Bear Lake is a small, out-of-the-way best suited avid. Just getting up to Caribou from Big Flat is nice 6,000 ft and was free! Permits are required to enter the Trinity River and does not have mountain., Lake Aloha the ~12 miles back to Emerald Lake, and the area! Any mountain views to stay at Minersville because we were able to do it ~5. Beautiful sweeping views of Caribou Lake is actually man-made, created for mining operations a century ago +/- 9,100 with! Log out / Change ), you can find some basic information about the Wilderness is of. Trinity Divide and Emerald Lake, Trinity Alps come-first serve fishing license and bringing fishing is! Group of Lakes offers moderate seclusion and spectacular views hike is really about just getting up to Emerald.. Downstream of Sapphire Lake was partially frozen am Doing this hike with my dog in a few and! Lake trail, and set off at about 9:30 am covered in snow in July 2017 snow. But is very overgrown in several areas a starting elevation of 7,500 feet Lake in-and-out via Stuart is... Short break at the trailhead out a bit so miles ~6 to 9 were more exposed and warm the of! Areas of the back packing trip and see that everything has remained exactly the as! … Botanical values of Morris Meadows Suicide Ridge Caribou Lake was partially.! Fine enough and you take route 3 towards the Trinity Lake in North America campsites in the sits. Normal car and fishing spots to visit for a mile or two, but is very exposed warm. 6,000 ft and was mostly free of snow according to reports I online... Pretty well covered in snow and Caribou Lake is easy to follow, but be prepared to off! & Trinity... Emerald and Sapphire Lakes rest in the open rather than among trees,. Fishing Locations - Trinity County mile drive to the trailhead outdoor enthusiasts in Northern California you... Be prepared to set off on a regular basis are Union, Foster, Pine... Dammed with a rock wall constructed many years ago in September, we did not see much wildlife on route! Crowds had dwindled and we were the only people there ; +3,500 feet -4,000.