Hike on the popular Loch Leven Lakes trail, ten miles west of Donner Pass. It’s a gorgeous set of alpine lakes set in glaciated granite terrain. There were other people at all the lakes, especially the lower ones, including backpackers camped and on the trail. Our attempt to circumnavigate High Loch Leven Lake was foiled by impassible cliffs, dense brush, and water (at least two of which would have had to be crossed to continue around the lake). We went swimming in the cool but not freezing lake, or rather one of us swam and the other voluntarily submerged with some coaxing.

Photo Album

Track and Profile


8.52 mi (3.72 mi uphill, 3.60 mi downhill, 1.14 mi flat)
1916 ft total ascent (1964 ft descent) – 14.7 % uphill grade, 17.9 % downhill grade
5:38:49 total time (4:32:55 moving, 1:05:54 stopped)
0:32:01 pace (1.9 mph average speed, 5.5 mph max speed)
16.810 difficulty, 29.679 effort