Monday, June 23, 2014

Echo Lake in the Sierras

Water Taxi to Upper Echo Lake
While in South Shore Lake Tahoe we drove back up into the Sierras to explore the beautiful alpine Echo Lake. There’s actually 2 Echo Lakes, a Lower large Echo Lake and an upper small Echo Lake which is reachable by a 10 minute water taxi that is quite a fun and fast experience. Except for the channel, that's slow speed movement. The water is clear and cold.

The Channel That Connects the Lakes
We took the water taxi up to the trailhead and took the part of the Pacific Crest Trail back to the lower lake where the car is and is a nice 3 mile hike along the lake. The trail is beautiful and provides photo ops at every turn.

Wharf in Upper Echo Lake
The Pacific Coast Trail is 2,663 mi (4,286 km) long and runs from the Mexican Border to the Canadian Border. It’s quite a trail and our little 3 miles of it was fun.

On the Trail

More Trail
This is a popular trail, winter and summer. Parking can fill up early at the little Echo Lakes Marina area but there is overflow parking about 1/2 miles back up the road.
Snow Line
Leash-free dogs are welcome but be sure your dog has good trail manners and be prepared to leash him to pass other hikers if they ask you. All the dogs we saw were friendly and having a good time.

Homes at the Lake
Few More Homes at the Lake
There are homes at Echo Lake but the owners can only get there by boat in the summer and skis or snowmobiles in the winter. No roads, no cars. There's actually not many homes there. They're old and have passed down through generations of owners.

Fisherman Catches Trout 
The Trout that are being caught in the lower lake near the marina is a non-native species that is taking over lower Echo Lake. The National Park Forest Rangers want to protect the lake and bring it back to its original condition.

View of Tahoe Basin From the Top
All Sierra waterways are prone to giardia so be prepared to carry your own water or bring a good purifier. Also remember to dress in layers as it can be quite cold in the shade &/or wind, even in mid-summer.

Echo Lake is a beautiful place to see and hike in.

Highly recommended!

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