Glacier Lake Trail

Tahoe National Forest, California

Elevation Gain822ft
Trailhead Elevation6,945ft
Elevation Min/Max6924/7582ft
Elevation Start/End6945/6946ft

Glacier Lake Trail

Glacier Lake Trail is a hiking trail in Nevada County, California. It is within Tahoe National Forest. It is 2.4 miles long and begins at 6,945 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 4.7 miles with a total elevation gain of 822 feet. The trail ends near the Glacier Lake water. This trail connects with the following: Grouse Ridge Trail, Sand Ridge Trail and Five Lakes Basin Trail.

Glacier Lake Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Hiking Northern California (Falcon Guides)
Bubba Suess
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"This hike through one of the most extensively glaciated high-country regions in the Northern Sierra is packed with far- reaching vistas, beautiful peaks, and alpine lakes. The trail leads from a tremendous trailhead vista to tiny Glacier Lake, set beneath the rocky crags of the Black Buttes. The headwaters of the South and Middle Forks of the Yuba River consist of a large knot of heavily glaciated mountains. Dozens of lakes and countless tarns occupy broad plateaus, shallow valleys, and rolling terrain situated beneath tall peaks. The area is primarily composed of granite, but, as is common in the Northern Sierra, there are notable intrusions of gabbro and sedimentary rocks. Though it lacks any form of legal protection, the heart of this mountainous area is essentially a wilderness area. Indeed, the Yuba River headwaters are one of the largest wildlands in the Northern Sierra that lack formal protections."
Hiking The Sierra Nevada (Falcon Guides)
Barry Parr
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"The high country of Nevada County is locally famous for its many lakes, of which Glacier is one of the prettiest and most remote. From our trailhead on Grouse Ridge, at an elevation of about 7, 500 feet, we enjoy unobstructed views of the high lakes basin at the headwaters of Canyon and Lake creeks, tributaries of the South Yuba River. Below us lie Island, Feely, and Hidden lakes, with the reddish cone of Fall Creek Mountain immediately behind them. On a clear day the 10, 457-foot dome of Mount Lassen is visible 90 miles to the northwest. The distinctive Sierra Buttes (8, 587 feet) punctuate the northern horizon at 14 miles."

Glacier Lake Trail Trip Reports

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We did this hike with our 11-year old and 2 dogs. Hke ranged from easy to moderately strenuous in a couple of places...mostly at the end climbing up to the lake. We found a great (albeit slighly unlevel) camp site to the right of where the trail crests. There was a boy scout group (maybe eagle scouts?) of about 14 camping nearby, but they were quiet and respectful. I hear this is a popular destination for the scouts. We would definately do this hike again. Good for backpacking. We stayed for 4 days/3nights and that was plenty...not much to keep you busy without hiking elsewhere.
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Popular spot, we had at least 5 other groups show up to the same area. Way to busy.

Glacier Lake Trail Photos

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Trail Information

Tahoe National Forest
Nearby City
Tahoe National Forest
Yuba River Ranger District, 15924 Highway 49, Camptonville 95922 (530) 288-3231
Local Contacts

Trail Log