Horsetail Falls

Placerville, California 95667

Horsetail Falls

Horsetail Falls Professional Review and Guide

"No proper trail leads to the giant spill of whitewater that pours from the heights of the Desolation Wilderness above Twin Bridges, but the path along Pyramid Creek offers great views of the waterfall, as well as an up-close visit to a lovely cataract. Though visible from US 50 as you descend a switchback from Echo Summit to Twin Bridges—in fact, a traffic stopper in peak season—Horsetail Falls is relatively remote. No established trail leads directly to the base or to the summit, which is high in the Desolation Wilderness.

But the trail along Pyramid Creek offers great views of the
waterfall, and the creek rocks with excitement when flush with meltwater. Pyramid Creek, Horsetail Falls, and the cascades run year-round, fed by outflows from alpine lakes high in the wilderness, including Avalanche Lake, Pitt Lake, Ropi Lake, and Lake of the Woods. Only the top few tiers of the falls can be seen from the trail."

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Trail Information

Nearby City
Trail Type
Skill Level
3-4 hours
Eldorado National Forest, Forest Supervisor’s Office, 100 Forni Rd., Placerville, CA 95667; (530) 622-5061;
Local Contacts
USGS Echo Lake CA
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Jul 2018