Alpine Lake

Trinity Alps Wilderness

Trinity Alps + Marble Mountain Wilderness, California

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Alpine Lake


  • Welcome to the wilderness.- Alpine Lake
  • Hiking along the trail.- Alpine Lake
  • A snake along the trail.- Alpine Lake
  • A section of the scramble to the lake.- Alpine Lake
  • The trail leading to the lake shore.- Alpine Lake
  • The first view of the lake along the trail.- Alpine Lake
  • One of the granite walls that surrounds the lake.- Alpine Lake
  • Dusk reflections.- Alpine Lake
  • A perfect spot to camp and have a meal.- Alpine Lake
  • Late morning light illuminates the lake.- Alpine Lake
  • A view of the lake from a surrounding mountain side.- Alpine Lake
  • Early in the summer the flow from the lake creates a meadow.- Alpine Lake
  • Traveling down the scramble.- Alpine Lake
  • - Alpine Lake
Overview + Weather
Great views. Many swimming opportunities. Abundant wildlife.
Steep rocky scramble. Exposed trail. Exposed camp sites.
Trinity Alps + Marble Mountain Wilderness, CA
Pets allowed: 
Net Elevation Gain: 
3,200.00 ft (975.36 m)
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Summer, Fall
Suitable for:
Hiking, Horseback
Total Distance: 
17.00 mi (27.36 km)
Trail type: 
Trailhead Elevation: 
3,000.00 ft (914.40 m)
Current Local Weather:
Hike Description

Hike Description


Alpine Lake is nestled against 2,000-foot granite ridges in the southwestern section of the Trinity Alps Wilderness. From the ridge to the southwest rises 8,031-foot Little Granite Peak. The outflow of Alpine Lake cascades through granite boulders until it combines with Stuart Fork Creek and eventually Trinity Lake.

The Trinity Alps Wilderness Area was designated a national wilderness area in 1984 and stretches over half a million acres, one of California's largest wilderness areas. In addition to being one of the most diverse conifer areas in the world, many large mammal species also call this place home: black bears, mountains lions, black-tailed deer, and bobcat are a few of the more noteworthy. Large predatory birds are also common, especially the osprey.

Osprey are a very common sight fishing in the lakes at dawn and dusk. These predatory birds rest on nearby trees and watch for fish swimming in the lakes as much as 130 feet away. When a fish is sighted the osprey will dive feet first at the water creating a slapping sound. The sound of an osprey fishing is distinct in the Trinity Alps and usually means a good show is underway. Another way to guess an osprey is nearby and hopefully fishing is by their cry. This call is an irritated cheep cheep and is commonly heard when the bird is disturbed. 

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(16 within a 30 mile radius)

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