Summer is a great time to experience the amazing hiking opportunities that we have so close to Placerville! There are so many options, it can be hard to choose. Here are five of what we think are the best hikes near Placerville. Are any of these your favorites?
Located near Colfax, California, Stevens Trail is a beautiful hike that leads down to the river. In the summer, it can get quite hot, so just make sure to hike early and bring plenty of water. Then, cool off with a dip in the river!
This scenic trail is also rich in history and is on the National Register of Historic places. Originally, it was built by Truman Allen Stevens as a toll road for miners that needed to get from the mining town of Iowa Hill to the railroad town of Colfax.
The trail is dog-friendly and accessible year round, just watch out for poison ivy as there have been numerous reports of it along the trail.
Eagle Falls Trailhead
If you’re looking for a short, but beautiful trail, this is the one. Eagle Falls Trailhead is located near South Lake Tahoe, just a short 1.8 mile out and back with views over sparkling Emerald Bay in the distance. The falls are beautiful, and many people like to picnic and swim once they reach the Eagle Lake. Or, if you’re feeling up for more hiking, you can continue on to Velmas, Dicks, and Fontanillis lakes.
The trail can get crowded and parking is limited, to it’s best to plan to start this hike early – before 8am preferably.
Another hike near South Lake Tahoe, Horsetail Falls is a 3 mile hike with around 600 feet in elevation gain. You’ll have two options: the Wilderness Boundary Trail (challenging) which leads you to the base of the waterfall, or the Pyramid Creek Trail, which is a shorter trail that is perfect for families and beginner hikers. Either way you’ll get stunning views of the falls!
Most of the hike follows Pyramid Creek, which is lovely and refreshing on a hot day.
Sly Park Jenkinson Lake Loop Trail
Pack your swimsuit for this one! Located near Pollock Pines, Sly Park Jenkinson Lake Loop Trail is a 9 mile hike thatruns along Jenkinson Lake and offers lots of shade and opportunities for a dip in the lake.
This hike is easy, well-marked, and a perfect, scenic family hike. You can follow an offshoot to view the Park Creek Waterfall, which is also worth the extra effort.
The trailhead for Cascade Falls is located in the Bayview Campgrounds across from Inspiration Point in South Lake Tahoe. It’s a short, 2 mile loop that offers spectacular views of Cascade Lake, Lake Tahoe, and the falls.
The majority of the hike is shaded, and provides gorgeous views along the way. Once you reach the falls, you can explore several shallow pools or just sit back and relax on a nice rock and soak in the amazing views.