Trip Picks

Wildflowers along the PCT hiking trail near Carson Pass, El Dorado County

You’ll find incredible wildflowers along the PCT hiking trail near Carson Pass.

Hiking Trail Recommendations

With so many miles of hiking trails to choose from, it can be hard to decide where to begin! To help you out, we’ve put together recommendations for a variety of hikes to suit all tastes.

Desolation Wilderness

Desolation Wilderness, located west of Lake Tahoe in El Dorado County, may be considered small for a wilderness area at nearly 64,000 acres, but it compensates with dramatic scenery ranging from starkly beautiful granite to cerulean blue alpine lakes. Visitor permits are required year-round for both overnight and day hikes. Its many glacially formed lakes and streams make it one of the most scenic stretches of the Pacific Crest Trail and Tahoe Rim Trail.
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Hiker in Desolation Wilderness above Gilmore Lake.

The views of the Desolation Wilderness are even more amazing in person.


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Visit tahoerimtrail.org for more information.

Tahoe Rim Trail

Come hike, bike, and horseback ride on the spectacular Tahoe Rim Trail (TRT) as it follows the ridges and mountaintops that circle Lake Tahoe. Winding for 150 miles through national forest, wilderness, and state park lands, the trail crosses thick conifer forests and wildflower-filled meadows, meanders alongside aspen-bordered creeks, and skirts the shores of crystalline lakes. The TRT was built to accommodate hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians, and to showcase breathtaking views of Lake Tahoe, California’s High Sierra, and the Great Basin of western Nevada.
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Dave Moore Nature Area

The Dave Moore Nature Area is located approximately two miles west of the Marshall Gold Discovery State Park in Coloma on Highway 49.  The loop trail is about a mile long, half of that is constructed to be fully accessible to people with wheelchairs, walkers, and strollers and leads to the South Fork of the American River.  Remnants from nearly 150 years ago when Chinese laborers channeled creek water by hand with pick and shovel for gold mining.
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El Dorado Trail

El Dorado Trail

The El Dorado Trail offers both Class 1 and natural trails for hikers, bikers, and equestrians.

The newest trail system to El Dorado County will eventually extend from the western county line to the Lake Tahoe Basin. Currently you can access the trail from the western end of the County through Placerville into Camino. Most of the El Dorado Trail is unimproved and remains with the rails left abandoned. Over twenty-three miles of this natural trail weave through the foothills, all open for nature walks, horseback riding, or mountain biking.
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