Northern California is a great place for a spring backpacking trip! Here are the best low/middle elevation trails in the Bay Area, Northern Sierra Nevada, Lassen National Forest, Klamath Mountains, redwoods, and North Coast. You can hike many of them year-round, even in winter.
Here are all my posts about backpacking and day hiking Trinity Alps Wilderness Trails. Be sure to scroll down to see the post on trail conditions, and also specific hikes to Big Bear and Little Bear Lakes, Caribou Lake, Canyon Creek Lakes, and much more.
Ken DeCamp’s all-color Wildflowers of the Trinity Alps is a beautiful book covering 505 wildflower species. Here Ken discusses the book, his favorite Trinity Alps wildflower hikes, and the course of his career as a photographer and writer. Where to Purchase Wildflowers of the Trinity Alps Wildflowers of the Trinity Alps: Including the Marble Mountain […]
The Pacific Crest Trail travels through the rugged Trinity Alps Wilderness from Scott Mountain Summit to Carter Meadows Summit. This post provides PCT section hikers/backpackers details of lakes, campsites, connecting trails. Highlights: East Boulder Lake, Telephone Lake, Mavis Lake, South Fork Lakes, Hidden Lake. And it’s based on an excerpt of Philip Kramer’s beautiful all-color […]
Smith Lake, surely one of the most beautiful lakes in the Trinity Alps, rests on the south side of Sawtooth Mountain, just below Morris Lake. Nature writer Tim Sims shares an excerpt from his excellent book that describes how he backpacked cross-country from Alpine Lake to Smith Lake. Smith Lake, the Trinity Alps’ Most Beautiful […]
Ever thought about backpacking sections of the Pacific Crest Trail in Northern California? Philip Kramer, author of the new book Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail: Northern California Section Hiking from Tuolumne Meadows to Donomore Pass (Mountaineers Books, 2018) shares key information in this wide-ranging interview. Why Does Section Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail Have Such […]
I’ve just provided a 2018 update to my Trinity Alps trail conditions post. The main upshot: it looks like there will not be weekly updates of the PDF file that had been created by Jim Holmes of the Weaverville Ranger Station for many years. (Jim retired.) Instead, you can get recorded information by calling 530-623-2121 […]
Backpackers and day hikers need to know the conditions of Trinity Alps Wilderness trails and trailhead access roads before they begin their explorations of this beautiful and remote region in Northern California. I discuss the main source for trail and road information below in this 2019 update. I get a lot of emails and blog […]
The Canyon Creek Lakes and Boulder Creek Lakes are likely the most popular backpacking destinations in the Trinity Alps, and for good reason. The trails have everything a backpacker wants: roaring creeks with waterfalls, verdant meadows, abundant wildflowers, deep, rock-ringed lakes, and towering granite peaks. This post provides everything you need to find the trailhead […]
Hiking/backpacking to Big Bear Lake and Little Bear Lake in the Trinity Alps is one of my favorite far northern California excursions. Trailhead access is easy, and I quickly get into beautiful sub-alpine granite wilderness. Note that the trail itself is relatively steep — you need to be in decent shape. (This post is based […]
I did a fantastic hike to Little Bear Lake in the Trinity Alps Wilderness. It started with a steep 3000-foot climb on the trail to Big Bear Lake, followed by a moderate 1-mile cross-country scramble over granite. Little Bear Lake in the Trinity Alps: My Video I love this lake and I had it all […]
Not many people try to bag a major Trinity Alps peak like Mt. Hilton in winter, but Michael Kauffmann really loves to hit the high mountains, even when most people wouldn’t consider it. Granted, we’re way behind on snowpack, so he was able to do a lot of the walking on regular trail, which was […]
Mount Shasta area writer Tim Holt just wrote a really good piece in the Redding Record Searchlight called “Naked sunbathers, Mt. Shasta oddities: In the great outdoors, expect the unexpected.” I’m one of the hikers he featured, and he discusses a very pleasant and memorable experience I had while backpacking in the Trinity Alps in […]
OK fellow hikers, all of northern California got buried under monster snowpack this winter and spring, including the Trinity Alps. As some of you may know, I started my backpacking career in the Trinity Alps, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself when I backpacked to Caribou Lake, Emerald Lake and elsewhere in the Alps last summer. […]
I recently took a kick-ass backpacking trip to Caribou Lake, Sawtooth Ridge, Emerald Lake , and Morris Meadows, all top Trinity Alps trails I haven’t trod in years. The journey traced one of the most difficult journeys in my guidebook 100 Classic Hikes: Northern California — Hike 57 to Caribou, Emerald, and Sapphire Lakes. And […]
Note: Get the latest information on Trinity Alps trail conditions and trailhead access here. Like much of the rest of northern California, the Trinity Alps received an overabundance of snow this winter and spring. There’s still a lot of snow at the highest elevations, and in some places the heavy storms knocked trees across the trail. […]