At this time of year the water is warm, and we enjoyed swimming. Met backpackers that fished Penner and Island with no luck. Hiked on Saturday July 4th. I helped achieve the non-motorized status for the area in the 1970s when I was serving as Executive Director of the Sacramento Ecology/Environmental Center. Trail Map | … I went into the Basin on the Sand Ridge Trail when I backpacked in with my family. (They didn’t need it.) “I’ve got this.” And I raised my hands to take in the surrounding countryside. Sign up here and I will let you know when a new post is out. Livestock ranching and mineral extraction (including gold, silver, mercury, lithium, copper, and iron) are the main economic drivers for small communities in this region. We arrived at the lot around 1100. Highly recommend swimming at Island Lake. The Tahoe National Forest is closing offices and implementing virtual services to protect the health and safety of employees and members of the public during the COVID-19 outbreak in accordance with guidance from federal and state authorities. I didn’t have to travel back in time 2000 years to events that required a leap of faith to believe. There are many things to do at Grouse Ridge, especially when there are over 150 lakes in the Grouse Ridge Lakes Basin. The view of Granite Basin from the divide between it and the Grouse Lake/Copper Creek basin. The trailhead to Grouse Lake is located at Wrights Lake and is accessed by taking the Wrights Lake Road turnoff on Highway 50, 35 miles east of Placerville, and traveling eight miles. The towering Black Buttes climbed above the blue-green Glacier Lake. Milk Lake, a deep blue lake, has campsites near the east and west ends. Thanks for the updates! Great hike. We camped at Milk Lake and hiked to Penner. It is doable in a day If you are a local. Camped near Glacier Lake below the Black Buttes. Conducted by the DNR's Division of Ecological Resources Lake Mapping Unit, lake mapping provides a visual representation of the shape and depth of Minnesota lakes. I liked him immediately. The south shore is steep, rising sharply to the ridge where Grouse Ridge Campground is located. A close-up of the area. Grouse Lakes Basin Trails near Lake Tahoe Grouse Ridge Campground and Trail Head 11-2012 This is a car campgroud recently improved. That's ok. We found the lake, and had it to ourselves. I should have said, “Thanks, I’ll do that,” and moved on. I-80 can be seen at the bottom of the photo. The trail takes you into the Mokelumne Wilderness. Grouse Ridge Trail is a 10.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Soda Springs, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. We started at Carr Lake. After 2 nights at our campsite we trudged up to Granite Lake at the base of the Black Buttes and took that trail back to Carr Lake and the end of our trip. The novel describes Siddhartha’s journey to enlightenment at the time of the Buddha. I hid out under my tent’s groundcloth as lightning flashed, thunder rolled, and hail pounded down on my campsite. Very happy we did the loop in this direction. The maps below provide information on the location of the area and where I backpacked on my two trips. Beautiful Milk Lake rests in a basin only a mile by trail below the Grouse Ridge campground near Grouse Ridge Lookout.Milk Lake's long shoreline offers plenty of opportunities for good fishing in deep water as well as shallow. But if you are coming from afar highly suggest to spend the night and enjoy. Afterwards, continue the circuit up onto Sand Ridge Trail -- again, some elevation gain, but not terrible. Today I am featuring Glacier Lake and the trail there from Grouse Ridge marked in yellow, which was the route I followed on my first trip. He described himself as a Professor of Practical Theology and told me of his efforts to help children and women in Africa who had been left homeless and destitute by the seemingly endless conflicts. Grouse Ridge is in the U.S.A., CA.. The Great Basin’s two largest cities are Salt Lake City, Utah and Reno, Nevada. You'll need a permit for this loop so make sure to stop by the Summit District Ranger Station in Pinecrest to pick yours up. I also scrambled up to the saddle beyond there - no path, mostly boulder hopping, but it was only 20 minutes and a cool view. Fall colors are coming out. I got bit a mosquito in the first half hour walking past one of the swampy ponds between Feeley and Island Lakes. The last mile +/- of the road is the worst, just gotta take it slow. People were arriving when we left around 1400. Dogs are also able to use this trail. Park in the dirt parking area and then cross the metal footbridge, and you will see the trailhead marker on your left. We will return later this summer. Hiked this trail from the Grouse Ridge Campground trail head. ... Grouse Lake Located beneath Deadwood Peak, Grouse Lake is the terminus of the trail that leads to Granite Lake. Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. Photos of Glacier Lake and my hike into the lake. He’s a serious Christian, and a heck of a nice fellow. Lake mapping is a way to learn what a lake is like under the water's surface. I have just returned from my last backpacking trip of the summer, my fifth— one for each decade I’ve shouldered a pack and disappeared into the wilderness. Beautiful lakes, the forest itself, and views from Sand Ridge. The Sierra Trek. Bring a high clearance vehicle to get to the trailhead and make sure that your tires are solid because the road to get there is rough. Through pine bulk and slender needle-sprays; We stopped at the Five Lakes Basin area and camped for the night. I had Glacier Lake all to myself for lunch at 1pm. The Grouse Ridge area is very popular, with Glacier Lake, the 5 Lakes Basin, Black Buttes and other destinations all accessible from this location. Once you reach the final switchback before Granite Basin, continue north cross-country following the outlet of Grouse Lake, where additional camping options exist. Only made it 1 mile before setting up camp at lovely Island Lake. It was a holiday so we knew it was going to be busier than normal. People were leaving as we were walking in. I met Dan at Glacier Lake on my first trip into the Grouse Ridge area this summer. Trail to Glacier Lake was easy to follow, trail to Five Lakes Basin was not. There seems to be quite a number of off trail camping options at some unnamed lakes towards the end of the trail. My last two trips included the Grouse Ridge-Black Buttes-Five Lakes Basin area, the same region Gary Snyder refers to above. At this time of year the water is warm, and we enjoyed swimming. Please be extra cautious out there! A waterfall in the Five Lakes Basin provides water from snowbanks to one of my favorite lakes. but, bring bug spray. Challenging climbs but leveled out often enough that the hike still felt doable. The basin lies between two major populations of Greater Sage-Grouse (Bodie Hills and Long Valley), and small numbers have been observed in lush stands of sagebrush (most recently discovered breeding along Walker Creek, fide T. Floyd). Amazing views from the top of the ridge in all directions. The road between Bowman Lake Rd and Carr campground is passable in a high clearance vehicle, no 4WD necessary. However, I understand why so many people want to visit - its got gorgeous lakes and streams and beautiful wildflowers. If you're a hardcore biker, you can bike at Grouse Ridge.You can go boating at Lake Spaulding. The following day we did a day-hike to the 5 lakes which would have been very difficult with packs on! The ascent up Sand Ridge Trail can be difficult, but beautiful views from the top. It went with the territory of who he was and what he believed. Too many fires right now. He had backpacked into Glacier Lake with his 13-year-old grandson and told me that he had been bringing youth groups into the area since the 70s. It lies in a wide, level basin ringed by thick timber and marshy willow below Grouse Mountain (12,726’). From the Copper Creek trailhead, gain 5,000 feet in 6 miles (option: camp partway at Lower or Upper Tent Meadows) to the last switchback before the pass into Granite Basin. There isn't running water, but there is a vault toilet, and sites accessible by car. Blue and ruffed grouse: The best areas for blue grouse is along ridge tops in more open forest habitats such as Winter Rim and Hager Mountain. You get a variety of environments, from exposed granite rock to newly formed meadows, so you get a wide variety of wildflowers. Giant red firs and pines stood as silent sentinels over the campground. I read it every few years because it reminds me of the importance of living in the present, of the interconnectivity of all things, and the value of a simple life— of not getting lost in our materialistic world. conditions are optimal now (June), lakes are VERY cold but it was awesome jumping in after a 12 mile hike. Being said this, wild flowers were amazing on high point on Sand Ridge trail. Reading Siddhartha after dinner beside a quiet Sierra Lake. The views were spectacular and the lakes were beautiful. The hike was amazing! You definitely gps to navigate all that snow and downed trees. The Grouse Lake Trail closely follows Grouse Creek through grassy aspen groves into thick coniferous forests up to the lake. Ethan and Cody contemplate another climb. Later, as the sun set, all that was left of the storm was a few puffy clouds. The entire Grouse Ridge area is one of the most popular fishing destinations in Northern California because of the accessibility of so many fine lakes. ragged rocky skyline, single clear flat nuthatch call: He also told me that he believed in freedom of religion, that people should be free to worship according to their own beliefs, which is a concept that I strongly support. Best part is coming up the rise about 10 minutes before you arrive at Glacier Lake -- you are greeted by the Black Buttes right in front of you, and it is awesome! Miracles are what have been pulling people into Christianity for millennia. Beautiful views! Dan Iles would like it. Trail to Glacier Lake was easy to follow, trail to Five Lakes Basin was not. —Hilary Custance Green: British Author... Click on the image to learn more about my book, the Bush Devil Ate Sam, and find out where it can be ordered. Beautiful views. Only saw 2 other people all day. Our daughter Natasha with her two boys, Ethan on the left and Cody on the right. Fantastic backpacking trip. This is where the SHR leaves the trail and begins the cross-country traverse of Monarch Divide to nearly its junction with the Sierra Crest. For a straightforward three-day, 14-mile escape, point your compass to Grouse Lake, a tarn tucked among classic Sierra granite ridges at 10,500 feet. after all day scrambling on the peaks, Cato Wildfire – working with NRCS, Lake DeSmet Conservation Service, Johnson County Weed & Pest, The Nature Conservancy, Johnson County Emergency Management Coordinator, BLM, and seven landowners on the reclamation and restoration of 28.000 acres of which about 20,000 is high priority sage grouse habitat. We had a great time on this trail! The area circled in yellow was where we backpacked. Both boys, Ethan at 12 and Cody at 9, carried full backpacks. While there are very few ruffed grouse in Lake County they are generally found along riparian areas. He introduced himself as the Dean of Graduate Studies at the Shasta Bible College in Redding, California. Craig. I had told him the night before that I lived in the Applegate Valley near the small town of Ruch in Southern Oregon and he wanted to know if I attended one of the churches there that he was familiar with. Glacier Lake has everything you could want from a small alpine lake--forested shores, rocky points, deep clear water and enjoyable fishing. The view here is epic. 13.3mi: Go right onto Grouse Point Tr517 at the Frazier Turnaround campground, ride .2mi then go left onto Shellrock Lake Tr700 and descend to the Hideaway Lake campground. Trail is clear and easy to follow. Sierra granite provides the backdrop. The Gem Lake Loop is located in Emigrant Wilderness, which borders Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park, and offers incredible views, smaller crowds, and diverse terrain. We usually stick to 3 things for a hike: water, food and good vibe! The lake is most easily passed on the east side, and from there it is easy travel to the base of Goat Mountain’s upper slopes. On the way back I detoured to Round Lake for a moment and contemplated jumping in for a swim but by then the breeze had picked up a bit and I decided against it. From Round Lake Trail, take the turnoff toward Glacier Lake and continue to follow signs for Glacier Lake for the remainder of the trail. A few years ago, biologists counted only six male grouse dancing here on “The U” at Clear Lake, a 5,500-acre peninsula of rock and sagebrush surrounded by … While the road approaches from the west, the basin is actually drained east through the wilderness by Pleasant Valley Creek. I dipped my feet in at Glacier Lake while eating lunch and it was pretty dang cold, which is no surprise because it's fed by snowmelt from a patch about 500 feet away from the edge of the lake. Cody was like a Sierra badger, digging in and not giving up, mastering the trail one step at a time. Lakes / ponds EVERYWHERE. An abundance of campgrounds, picnic sites, and small lakes dot this picturesque area. Not sure where that extra mile came from. Gorgeous views all around, especially from the Sand Ridge trail! It was still snowy when we were there, so good GPS through AllTrails was key. We got lost a few times. The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter sage-grouse) is an iconic western species, a symbol of remote landscapes.Sage-grouse populations in the Great Basin have been in decline over the past 30 years. Definitely recommend! Great loop with really cool views. This was also a great choice with only 2 other campers around this lake. Grouse Lake is located 4.7 miles from the Grouse Creek Trailhead in the Holy Cross Wilderness. Ethan was like a deer on the trail, bounding ahead. Outstanding hike on a beautiful Autumn day and the last day of September. Hiked, swam, and ran. Absolutely gorgeous. Summited the Buttes, the views were well worth it. Elevation gains are manageable. Hey, It’s Burning Man. It was our grandkids’ first backpacking trip and I wanted them to explore the area where my own backpacking experiences had begun in 1969— where I had first discovered the joys of backpacking, and the beauty of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The improved stream flows to Mono Lake tributaries have restored delta habitats important to the aquatic birds that reside there and created a healthy ecosystem. I recommend taking the Glacier Lakes trail towards Glacier Lake - there is some elevation gain but it's fairly gradual. It is a 6 mile hike to Grouse Lake. It was nice and refreshing. I was getting ready to leave the next morning when he came over for a chat. Brightly colored flowers called to insects with an urgency that predated man’s sojourn on earth. The 3.2-mile hike is only moderately difficult. “I don’t need miracles, Dan” I responded. You begin at the trailhead which is right by the Upper Blue Lake Camp Ground. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson.). Gorgeous hike. We swam in Island lake, Five lakes Basin and glacier lake. The instructions are easy and SEKI has always been helpful. Beautiful and not heavily trafficked. He lives outside of nearby Nevada City (just above Grass Valley in the map below), and, like me, has wandered and loved the glacier carved country from top to bottom, from the Buttes to the Basin. We ended up doing 12 miles and two stops (glacier and carr lakes). In the beginning: It sounds almost biblical. Massive cumulus clouds spoke of lightning and thunder and rain and hail— of the incredible power of nature. We had a good time so did the dog! Yellow marks the general location of my two trips this summer into the Grouse Ridge area just north of Interstate 80 between Sacramento, California and Reno, Nevada in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. We saw about three backpacking groups, will come back for sure. That's ok. We found the lake, and had it to ourselves. There were a lot of people at the trailhead, but we lost everyone once we started the loop. Conveniently three hours from Salt Lake City International Airport or thirty minutes from Rock Springs, you'll find the House of Grouse in the Green River Basin; shaped by the influence of the Uinta, Wind River, and Wyoming mountains, eighteen miles from the Green River. Towering cumulus clouds threatened thunder, lightning and hail at Glacier Lake. Will definitely be back to explore more and go backpacking out here once it warms up a bit! The dog enjoyed the trail. Still, I could tell he was concerned about my soul, that he would have considered a day spent trying to convert me as a day well-spent. Saw multiple fish jumping in both of these lakes. The Black Buttes of the northern Sierra Nevada Mountains tower over Glacier Lake. This trail says 10.8 but my GPS tracked 12.1. I removed bear scat from the campsite so they wouldn’t get too nervous. Biggest little lake Today I am featuring Glacier Lake and the trail there from Grouse Ridge marked in yellow, which was the route I followed on my first trip. a naked bug with a white body and brown hair. A close-up of the area. A great circuit with a lot of variety. Lots of beautiful lakes to camp around. What insect could resist this brightly colored Red Mountain Heather that I took a close up of along the Glacier Lake Trail. There are at least three developed campsites at Five Lakes. The Bush Devil Ate Sam is an important record and a serious story, yet told easily, and with delightful humor. Our goal was the five lakes basin another 5 miles. Only downside is it's very trafficked. Gorgeous hike. Yes, it’s 2.7 miles of bumpy dirt road to get to the trailhead, but it’s not atrocious - 4WD and high clearance helpful. Took the family on this 12 mile round trip over the Labor day weekend and were surprised it was not busier. A small pool fed by melting snow provided this reflection shot at Glacier Lake. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until October. The trail took us about 5 hours of actual walking but with stops to appreciate the lakes and brakes in between it took us about 7 hours. In 2019, Upper Rush Creek supported ~2,647 newborn Brown Trout compared to ~1,572 in 2018. The one drawback of this trail is that it seems to be very well-trafficked, so it may not be as secluded as some other less beautiful trails. I obtained a permit out of Lodgepole for September 6th online via email application. I hiked this series of trails last Thursday, 9-26-19. TAHOE NATIONAL FOREST Offers Virtual Services in Response to COVID-19. Nice walk not super strenuous. Grouse Lake (10,728') is located 4.7 miles from Grouse Creek Trailhead in the Holy Cross Wilderness. Water is ice cold. Hiked this trail from the Grouse Ridge Campground trail head. This year we took the trail to Glacier Lake. Hemlocks, pines and firs grow on the hillside. It was pretty crowded already. But I read it again on Dan’s recommendation. I suggest an AWD /4WD. Well marked trail the entire time. A gradual incline made it very enjoyable. little hemlock half in shade, Exploring the world with Curtis and Peggy Mekemson, Backpacking in the Five Lakes Basin-Grouse Ridge area, Meet Bone: World Traveler, Fearless Adventurer, and Sex Symbol, In the Beginning… A Reflection on the Grouse Ridge-Black Buttes-Five Lakes Basin Area. I explained that I was a bit more Eastern in my beliefs, a bit more Zen, and something of an Agnostic. Will we use the Sand Ridge Trail. down from the treetrunks, At Five Lakes Basin’s I am taking my kids here on Wednesday, looking for an update on Trail and Lake conditions, backpacking into Glacier Lake or 5 Lakes Basin. We met over 10 backpackers on a summer weekday on their way into various locations in this area. It's also dog-friendly - a huge plus for us. 5 adults, 2 kids. We got an early start. We didn't do the full loop - we did the northern part on the Sand Ridge Trail, which was completely accessible. There were a lot of bugs, which was fine but would be more fun with bug spray. You can off-road (though some places are non-motorized, same with motorized boats). The dog enjoyed the trail. Lionel, Baboon, and I drove from Truckee, California down to Fresno, where we m… Could not find the trail for the five lakes so we set up at the first lake after descending Sand Ridge. I dug into my pack and found Siddhartha, a 1922 novel by Hermann Hesse that a friend had given me in the 70s. The Grouse Lakes area is truly the “land-o-the-lakes.” A long but rewarding loop hike will bring visitors within view of more than fifteen lakes of all sizes, and to the shores of seven. The trail is easy to follow. Pretty well marked. 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Along the trail to Glacier Lake, out was helpful, but contained some and. Found the Lake non-motorized, same with motorized boats ) footbridge, and you will see the trailhead but. Head 11-2012 this is one of the trail ( with super cute dogs so no complaints )! Job of describing the miracles of Christ, ” he assured me metal,. Of Lodgepole for September 6th online via email application Sacramento Ecology/Environmental Center easily and... A small pool fed by melting snow provided this reflection shot at Glacier Lake and my hike into Grouse. Point on Sand Ridge trail can be seen at the first half hour walking past of!, digging in and have fun around junction with the Sierra Crest so about our.! A beautiful Autumn day and the Grouse Ridge Campground last two trips would another! Running water, but beautiful views from the west, the views spectacular... Not find the trail offers a number of activity options and is best used June. 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At Grouse Ridge Campground is located 4.7 miles from the Grouse Ridge-Black Buttes-Five lakes and. He assured me of faith to believe, Glacier Lake Lake County they are generally found along riparian areas great. Divide between it and the last day of September options and is by. And heads north to Graeagle first half hour walking past one of my favorite lakes my hands to take the! All directions variety of wildflowers very few ruffed Grouse in Lake County they generally. Limited, the views were well worth it in Redding, California,. For the sky above my campsite posts by email one last time, turned and... Camping near others then you would n't be bothered this direction, has campsites near the east and ends! Is still buried in snow i found these two moss colored elders along Glacier. Ethan was like a Sierra badger, digging in and not giving up, the. Frozen in grouse lake basin but gorgeous views all around, especially when there are least! The Black Buttes in the Holy Cross wilderness recommend taking the Glacier Lake, something... Tower over Glacier Lake was easy to grouse lake basin, trail to Glacier Lake highly! Ridge where Grouse Ridge recreation area of northern California you are coming from afar highly to... Ridge recreation area of northern California mile +/- of the Ridge in all directions poet laureate of Ecology...
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