Difficulty: Moderate 10.6 miles with 750 ft. elevation change. of Also notice that there's a valley between our position approaching the West shore of Winnemucca Lake and the climb up to Round Top Lake. Woods Lake is located below us and the the Left, the West, while Carson Pass is located in the distant Right of the image, at the head of the forest running up the mountain from Left to Right that we can see below the Carson Gap. If the rivers have begun to surge under the weight of a full Spring Thaw, we should wait until the waters recede. A Relaxing Peace In retrospect, we should have returned after looking down the valley towards Woods lake (about 7 Km) and returning the way we came. We will not enjoy any extensive or thick tree cover again until we hike into the forest filling the floor of Summit City Canyon. Ground Stations, Carson Pass Scott overlooking Winnemucca Lake on a pause while climbing to Round Top Lake. Contact Us to This is the Southbound Backpacker's In Summit City Canyon we begin the 9.52 mile unmaintained section of the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail down to Camp Irene. You can also park at the south lot. Trail junction at West end of Winnemucca Lake with terrain West up to Round Top Lake in the background. Nov 5, 2018 - This Pin was discovered by Kelly. I'm pointing towards Carson Pass in the distance, which is the low point in the Sierra Crestline under the South flank of Red Lake Peak and to the North of the terrain rising towards Elephant Back. Radar, North California reporting station, Silver Lake But, I do understand why they only have three campsites here: It's way too close to a busy trailhead in a busy Management Area. Forgot account? Backpacking closer to cross over the low ridge protecting Winnemucca Lake. National Forest Genetic Electrophoresis Laboratory 2480 Carson Road Placerville CA 95667 Phone 530-622-1225 California Relay: 711 Hours: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm Schedule: Monday - Friday, year-round. Ground Stations, Schneiders I've never intentionally set Winnemucca Lake as the destination of a backpacking trip. Woods lake is located on Highway 88 just west of Carson Pass. to, Carson Pass Carson Pass is a very accessible and popular area for hiking, peakbagging and skiing. Our next move is from Round Top Lake to Fourth of July Lake on our way down to enter the unmaintained section of Tahoe to Yosemite Trail along Summit City Creek. Turning Right, to the Southwest on the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail route at the Winnemucca Lake trail junction opens up views across the Carson Pass Management Area revealing the terrain our two other potential routes between Carson Gap and Round Top Lake cross. I recollect only one time camping here, and that was during a Winter trip in the late '90s that was not working out as expected. Let's hike a bit West of Winnemucca Lake's trail junction, a bit up in elevation towards Round Top Lake, to get longer and unimpeded views of the terrain around Winnemucca Lake. Pacific Crest Trail from Carson Pass to the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail via Winnemucca Lake, Winnemucca Lake trail junction Weather: Sunny and 68 degrees. 1.04 miles, Winnemucca Lake or. Round Top Lake, Round Top Lake Trail Junction, NWS Man, you just gotta take your time and carefully kick good steps into it. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until October. Unlike many sandy areas where multiple trails are formed as hikers attempt to stay on firm ground, the ground here is hard, meaning there is no real reason to hike out of the established trailbed. Distance: 9 miles. Winnemucca Lake Aaron Hussmann Wildflowers in the Carson Pass region are marked not only by their abundance but also by their stunning backdrop framed by the looming arc of Round Top’s 10,000-foot ridgeline. Hiking West approaching the Top of the Ridge Ground Reporting Stations, Lake Tahoe Note that the low gap in the far-distant Right is the Carson Gap. South Looking South while hiking South out of the trees on the footbridge route. The Snow lip on the NW face of Mount Reba. I say "typically" because over the past 40 years we have very clearly seen a gradual change in the characters of the seasons, their durations, and the timing of their transitions. Carson Pass PCT TRAIL JUNCTION Just 30 miles south of Lake Tahoe, Highway 88’s Carson Pass region combines some of the Sierra’s loveliest scenery with some of its most flower-filled hiking trails. Take Highway 88 to the parking area at the Carson Pass ranger station on the west side of the road. Post pointing the way for Southbound PCT hikers around the Northeast flank of Elephant Back. Down to the final gap overlooking Round Top Lake. Mokelumne Wilderness. Description. On the other side of the brush is a low rounded rise of granite before the granite terrain drops down to backdrop the South shore of Woods Lake, and wrap like rocky arms around its Eastern and Western shores. Round Top Lake can be reached via the Woods Lake Trailhead. Highway 88 crosses the pass. This is where our trail passes South to Round Top Lake. Now we have one. Trail head: Carson Pass north parking lot at the Meiss Lake trail head; PCT. We've left those Western and Central route options behind. You’ll need a Sno-Park permit ($5/day, $25/season). There is overflow parking just before this point on the left. June 8, 2009. High Sierra Check Dam A Relaxing Piece Today, CA Route 88 crosses the pass. Pointing Out our Trail Location to Red Lake Peak rises to the North of Carson Pass, above the East side of our exit from the Tahoe Basin through the Carson Gap. Folsom, CA. I’ve talked about the Carson Pass to Lake Winnemucca trail, and the Meiss Lake trail, this time we’ll take a loop from Woods Lake to Lake Winnemucca and then to Round Top Lake and back. Below the edge of the slope we can see the little valley turning North (Left) and down towards Woods Lake. To the north on Carson Pass are other day hikes. They hiked the unmaintained section of the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail from Carson Pass to Lake Alpine. I'm pointing through our Carson Gap exit from the Tahoe Basin at Dicks Pass far to the North. The next and last stage of our hike up to Round Top Lake is the .88 of a mile West length of trail from Winnemucca Lake up the mountain flank to Round Top Lake. There are six sites at Round Top Lake. The North side of the road holds peaks like Red Lake and Stevens Peak. The best views, in our opinion, are had within the first 1.5 miles from Carson Pass. Log In. Woods Lake is 3-miles west of the Information Station on Highway 88. The Eastern route turns East from Carson Gap, the low gap in the center-Left of the image, to the Right, East, over to Carson Pass before the trail turns Southeast to Elephant Back where we encounter the trail junction with our trail to the South-Southwest towards Winnemucca Lake. Potential Solutions The backcountry skiing is incredible, especially if you enjoy hard wind slab. The Eastern Timing Spring Out Notice that we can still see the low point in the ridgeline off of Round Top where the terrain ascends on the far Right side of the image. Short flat/downhill to next gap in terrain, this one above and East of Round Top Lake. Terrain the trail from Winnemucca Lake follows West up to Round Top Lake. Check out All the Tahoe to Whitney .org It is approximately 1 mile to Frog Lake and another 1.3 mile to Winnemucca Lake. Winnemucca Lake. This is our Easternmost and the Southbound Backpacker's last chance to cross over onto the Southbound Tahoe to Yosemite Trail. Round Top Lake, Soft and Hard Frozen up to Looking North across the valley the trail up from Woods Lake follows up to Winnemucca Lake while pointing to the location of Carson Pass. The second route is the Central route up to Winnemucca Lake from the footbridge over Woods Creek below Woods Lake. between A summer wildflower explosion of color lines the trail from Carson Pass to Winnemucca Lake with Round Top Mountain the background. When we arrive at Winnemucca Lake we pass the trail junction where the "middle" route, the trail coming up from Woods Lake arrives at Winnemucca Lake. Scott, his pal Rich and Melika the trail dog were starting an early 2014 season section-hike. In the distance across that valley we can see the Northwest flank of Elephant Back. (Picture gallery and video at end of post). Point Forecast, NWS Trail head: Carson Pass north parking lot at the Meiss Lake trail head; PCT. Carson Pass Region Map CPMA 15 min Backpacking Map. The Hike The hike to Round Top Lake is a short (2.45 mi) but relentlessly uphill hike. Our campsite #2 was wonderful as it looked over Caples Lake and the distant mountain range. If car camping is more your speed, the closest to Carson Pass is Woods Lake campground. & Carson Pass in the Summer The Carson Pass area offers one of the most beautiful and scenic areas in the High Sierra. My Late Spring trips through this section tell me there are two things to seriously worry about: Going this direction, Hope Valley is another 7 miles down the road to the east of Carson Pass on Hwy. Well, I always camp "rough," in that I don't make a fire or fire ring, and never make furniture. The central route proceeds a bit to the Left of the center of the Carson Gap on its way to split into two routes up to Round Top Lake. During LATE Spring the mountains on either end are typically covered with snow, the valleys in-between are typically melted out. The rich volcanic soil feeds blankets of alpine blooms. Last Gap in Terrain Canine: (5) Rocky, Jacques, Lily, Stella, Zack. I did not find campsite one, but I am always passing by Winnemucca Lake on the way to more distant points, if not just up to Round Top Lake. High Sierra Trail Dogs Northeast view of Elephant Back across the top of the valley down to Woods Creek footbridge. We're looking East at the top of Elephant Back to the Left of the image, and the low V-gap on the Right is the gap behind the East shore of Winnemucca Lake. last chance to turn West to hike up Small flat between Winnemucca and Round Top Lakes. These miles are not unnecessary if we started our trip out of the Carson Pass Trailhead, though they are unnecessary, if we've exited the Tahoe Basin along the TYT route. Round Top. You can also locate Carson Pass by traveling 55 miles east of Jackson on Hwy. Marc Soares' 100 Classic Hikes in Northern California includes guides to a number of the hikes shown here on Up and Over Carson Pass: Granite Lake, Winnemucca Lake, Round Top, Emigrant Lake, and Lake Margaret. Winnemucca Lake. View East of Winnemucca Lake after hiking past it West towards Round Top Lake on the Southbound Tahoe to Yosemite Trail. Carson Pass region topo map. The Old Emigrant Road was a long loop around the Silver Lake basin, starting from Caples Lake and reaching an elevation of 9,640 feet (2,938 m) at one place. or. For current road conditions click on this Caltrans link. Round Top Lake. This is the most lengthy route between these two points. We're hiking down to the West shore of Winnemucca Lake, where its trail junction lay. Restricting camp sites was the only way this transition was going to happen. 1.26 miles, Round Top Lake The Left side of the ridge is back-dropped by The Sisters and her red-headed stepchild. The beginning of the hike is crowded – many people simply hike up to Winnemucca Lake (a worthy destination in itself) – but far fewer people reach the summit of Round Top. We can see almost the entirety of its route from Elephant Back to Winnemucca Lake above. All the Round Top Lake campsites (6) are in the stand of trees ahead on the West side of the upcoming junction with the trail up from Woods Lake via the Lost Cabin Mine Trail. It was something like 2002 that I was camped at Round Top Lake, and another backpacker asked me what I was doing. It is a much more pleasant way to get over the mountains than US 50 over Echo Summit or I-80 over Donner Summit. At 8,573 ft, is the highest pass crossing the Sierra that is open in the winter. The most popular hike starts at the Carson Pass Information Station and takes you through a series of wonderful wildflower gardens until you ge t to Winnemucca Lake. Photo: Wildflowers and Round Top Mountain looking south from the PCT. This would be a third route to Winnemucca Lake, via Round Top Lake by the Lost Cabin Mine trail up from Woods Lake. The page below covers the trail and terrain turning South through the Winnemucca Lake trail junction off the PCT to Round Top Lake via Winnemucca Lake. Carson Pass Station. Registered Members can post up stand alone post about the trail with text, images, maps and videos in the Trails Forum that supplements this section of the Trail Guide. and Directly ahead we see the sheer face of the hard rock ridge behind Winnemucca Lake. Terms of Service. Those two trails broke off from the main PCT-TYT route just a tiny bit South of the Carson Gap. to Here, snowdepths were lower, ranging from 4-8 inches with some bare spots. This hike begins at Carson Pass which is accessible from Highway 88. Location: Carson Pass Street: Hwy 88 City/Town: closest is Woodfords Website or Map: http://www.backpackthesierra.… Phone: 209-451-4937 Event Type: day, hike Parking for Cross-Country Skiing to Little Round Top. We will get bits of shade, but we'd have to stop to enjoy them. Looking through the Carson Gap and Jack and Dicks Peaks under a sweet crow of clouds far to our North in the Tahoe Basin. The directions the winds blow from each season has slowly changed, and is today different from the Fall, Winter, and Spring Winds of yesteryear. Thus the designated campsites, a la the heavily used area in Yosemite. CPMA 15 min Backpacking Map. The total distance of the Western Route from Carson Gap to Round Top Lake via the Lost Cabin Trail is 3.40 miles. Description of Area Hikes, By Susan Harris Hiking Trail Map Hike to Frog Lake and Winnemucca Lake: This popular hike for wildflowers and alpine scenery leaves from the Carson Pass parking lot. The easiest way to get directions is to just Google for a map of South Lake Tahoe to Carson Pass. Winnemucca Lake is another High Sierra Lake created by a historic check dam. Winnemucca Lake – Easy 2.3 miles one way Hiking, equestrian. Contact: Eldorado National Forest, Amador Ranger District - (209) 295-4251 GPS: 38º41'42.72"N, 119º59'22.50"W That about covers the three routes up to Round Top Lake from the Carson Gap. Winnemucca Lake, Top of the Climb to Carson Pass on CA 88 is one of our favorite passes. That valley is the South end of our Central route from Carson Gap to Winnemucca Lake up from the footbridge over Woods Creek. We've passed by the two trails breaking off the PCT leading South to Woods Lake, around which two of our potential routes up to Round Top Lake pass, being the Central footbridge and the Western Lost Cabin Mine routes. First, the Round Top Geologic Area, which has extinct volcanoes. The parking lot at Carson Pass (elevation 8,574 feet), about a 30-minute drive from South Lake Tahoe, fills up fast on July weekends—and for good reason.Savvy wildflower watchers know this popular route offers classic High Sierra scenery at its best, with leashed dogs welcome and a trail that’s easy enough for children. Climbing West up to Round Top Lake from Winnemucca Lake we find the Western route, the Lost Cabin Mine trail route, coming South up to the Round Top Lake trail junction via its route climbing around and above the West shore of Woods Lake. Carson Pass Region This parking lot is on the south side of Carson Pass. Our Southbound Tahoe to Yosemite Trail passes around the base of the descending mountain flank after passing West by the compass through the upcoming Round Top Lake trail junction. Radar, Big View There is now a Carson Pass Management Area for the area immediately around and including Round Top Peak and some new regulations. The Winter Route from the End of the Valley to Round Top Lake. This video covers the Eastern route from Carson Gap to Round Top Lake through Carson Pass and Winnemucca Lake. This last bit puts the total distance from Carson Gap to Round Top Lake at 4.57 miles, and also measures the distance the trail guide page below covers. of After enjoying the walk from Barker's Pass, our hosts suggested we try their favourite summer walk from Carson's Pass. Questions? Carson Pass is a well used and popular area year round. Trail North to Woods Lake. Begin at the top of Carson Pass and follow the ridgeline north for a little more than 1.5 miles. 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