Rattlesnake Creek to Papoose Lake

Weaverville, California

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2 Reviews
5 out of 5
For years Papoose Lake has managed to fly just under the radar screen when it comes to renowned Trinity Alps destinations. Overshadowed by more prominent neighbors like Grizzly, Canyon Creek, and Emerald Lakes, Papoose is rarely crowded, but not for lack of charm. The jagged granite cirque overlooking Papoose is drop-dead gorgeous, and the clear, icy water is well worth the final steep scramble up to the lake (calling this last rough segment a trail is a stretch). Along the way you hike by many fascinating mining relics left along Rattlesnake Creek, a one-time booming center of gold prospecting. Rattlesnake Creek itself tumbles through a deep, lush drainage with mostly pleasant walking. Highlights: Historic mining relics along beautiful Rattlesnake Creek and a granite wonderland in the Papoose Lake basin.

Rattlesnake Creek to Papoose Lake Professional Review and Guide

"For years Papoose Lake has managed to fly just under the radar screen when it comes to renowned Trinity Alps destinations. Overshadowed by more prominent neighbors like Grizzly, Canyon Creek, and Emerald Lakes, Papoose is rarely crowded, but not for lack of charm. The jagged granite cirque overlooking Papoose is drop-dead gorgeous, and the clear, icy water is well worth the final steep scramble up to the lake (calling this last rough segment a trail is a stretch). Along the way you hike by many fascinating mining relics left along Rattlesnake Creek, a one-time booming center of gold prospecting. Rattlesnake Creek itself tumbles through a deep, lush drainage with mostly pleasant walking. Highlights: Historic mining relics along beautiful Rattlesnake Creek and a granite wonderland in the Papoose Lake basin."

Activity Type: Backpacking, Hiking
Nearby City: Weaverville
Distance: 25.6
Elevation Gain: 3,646 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Difficult
Duration: Backpack
Season: Best mid June through October
Trailhead Elevation: 3,000 feet
Top Elevation: 6,870 feet
Local Contacts: Trinity Alps Wilderness
Local Maps: USGS Thurston, Mt. Hilton, and Thompson; USDAFS Trinity Alps Wilderness

Rattlesnake Creek to Papoose Lake Reviews

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7/1/2006
We did this hike three nights with 2 half days on either end. I really enjoyed it and the grade was fairly easy the whole way. The most hectic thing was the river crossings and trying to keep feet dry I highly recommend a pair of river sandals! Papoose lake is beautiful and we even swam although there was still a little snow on the edges. The final 3 miles of this hike are really stunning and rival any of the scenary in the Trinity Alps but since you are walking in trees most of the other 11 miles I did however find the scenery up Rattlesnake Creek a little monotonous. We saw three Rattlesnakes two Racers, one Night snake and one Salamander, so I guess thats where the creek gets its name. Plenty of signs of bear but we didn't see any.
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8/9/2005
Beautiful, challenging, steep for last three miles. Flat for the first ten miles. Goes through many old mining artifacts and amazing earth movement remnants. have a great hike you will love. make sure to stop at Stickney Camp at the mill creek crossing.
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Rattlesnake Creek to Papoose Lake Photos

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Jun 2018