LAKE LOOP BACKPACKING TRIP THROUGH TRINITY ALPS WILDERNESS

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SUMMARY

TRIP · 3 day backpacking trip
FOR · Advanced backpackers

VIBE · Remote, difficult, with spectacular ridge lines & alpine infinity lakes

COST · $
DRIVE · 4.5 hours from SF 
IDEAL DATES · 
June - October
PETS · Welcome in the backcountry

DESIGNED BY

MICHAEL MAYERNICK

A backcountry adventure is both a physical and emotional experience - we feel powerful when we ascend a peak, but also awestruck by our smallness in the grand expanse of the mountains.

WHY I LOVE THE WILD

This is a hard and remote hike, but it rewards you along the way with some spectacular lakes along the way.

WHY I'M SHARING THIS TRIP
WHY TRINITY ALPS?

Send your friend a photo from the Trinity Alps and they may think you hit the trail in Tahoe. But these spectacular rugged peaks and 55 gleaming lakes are in fact located 200 miles north of the Sierra Nevada Range, making the Trinity Alps California’s lesser known and lesser traveled alpine region. With empty trails, self-registered permits, and endless dispersed camping, the 500,000 acre Trinity Alps Wilderness offers a genuine opportunity to find your own path and peace.

· Directions To Trailhead

· Latest Fire Restrictions

· Backcountry Notices

⛺ You'll need a wilderness permit for this trip so reserve & print yours ASAP

🔥 Apply & print out a
CA campfire permit too. It only takes a few minutes online. 

⛈️ Bring rain gear, camp below the tree line & avoid afternoon hikes (when thunderstorms are most likely)

⛰️ The lowest elevation you’ll be at is 7500 ft. so make sure you’re comfortable and/or familiar with the altitude
 

😷 Face masks & social distancing are

    required. Recreate responsibly!

STUFF YOU
NEED TO KNOW

ITINERARY

PERSONAL
SHARED
RECCS
ESSENTIALS
CLOTHING
ACCESSORIES

GEAR

DAY ONE
DAY TWO
DAY THREE

Dinner

MOUNTAIN HOUSE CHICKEN FRIED RICE*

*We love the convenience of freeze dried backpacking food. Mountain House is our favorite brand – just bring salt, pepper, and hot sauce to spice things up!

FOOD

VIBE CHECK TRINITY ALPS WILDERNESS

DAY ONE
LEAVE SF BY 8 AM

IF YOU'RE OKAY WITH ADDING ~1 HR TO YOUR TRIP, GO TO FRESCANA MEXICAN BISTRO

Located at 3141 US Hwy 50 Ste. C, South Lake Tahoe

Order a breakfast/lunch burrito to get energized before your trek!

Open everyday | 8 AM - 8 PM
 

DRIVE TO ECHO LAKE PARKING LOT

There’s a general store for last minute needs and treats 

Campsites are also available should you need to buffer either end of your trek


ENJOY THE 4.1 MILE HIKE TO RALSTON LAKE
- At 3.6 miles, you’ll see a sign to turn left towards Tamarack & Ralston Lakes
- The last 0.5 mile, you'll hike along Tamarack Lake, cross a small stream (keep an eye out for a felled tree), then reach Ralston Lake
- There is a fair amount of flat ground with trees for shade and privacy on the NE side of Ralston Lake
- If the lake level is high enough, there are some awesome cliffs to jump off of on the eastern side of the lake
- Ralston Lake is very secluded with low foot traffic. We had the lake all to ourselves!


SETTLE IN & SET UP CAMP

CAR TO CAMP: 4.1 miles |961 ft of elevation gain | 3 hours

DAY TWO
PACK UP & PACK OUT BEFORE NOON

- Sleep-in, cook a hot breakfast & check for any litter around camp
- Top off your water supply before you head out

RETURN TO ECHO LAKE PARKING LOT

HEAD HOME!
CAMP TO CAR: 4.1 miles | 961 ft. of elevation gain | 3 hours

HIKE TO LAKE OF THE WOODS OR LAKE ALOHA
- It's a 4.6 mile RT to Lake of the Woods or a 4.8 mile RT hike to Lake Aloha

- Enjoy view of the notorious Aloha Lake!

OR IF YOU'RE FEELING AMBITIOUS, HIKE TO RALSTON PEAK
- It's a 7.4 mile RT climb with 1,395 ft. of elevation gain

- This hike ventures you above the tree line so bring lots of water & sunscreen!

- Roughly the last 0.5 mile of this trail is marked by cairns so keep an eye out
- From the summit, you can see 11 lakes!

DAY THREE

Your outdoor experiences helps everyone have a safe & memorable time in nature. Share how your trip to Trinity Alps Wilderness went below & tag us @bewilder_camp if you used this itinerary!

LAST UPDATED: August 14, 2021

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