Sacramento: Pinecrest Lake Loop

Giant stands of ponderosa pine alternate with patches of wildflowers along the rugged shorelines of Pinecrest and Catfish lakes on this isolated 5.9-mile loop.
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Giant stands of ponderosa pine alternate with patches of wildflowers along the rugged shorelines of Pinecrest and Catfish lakes on this isolated 5.9-mile loop.

Trail Facts

  • Distance: 8.1

Waypoints

PCL001

Location: 38.1938133239746, -119.993392944336

Trail follows W bank of Pinecrest Lake

PCL002

Location: 38.1940498352051, -119.992958068848

Pass dock and cabins on R; continue under tall ponderosas

PCL003

Location: 38.1961212158203, -119.987380981445

Trail leads to giant granite outcrop; wildflowers litter treeless sections

PCL005

Location: 38.2001495361328, -119.982032775879

Bear L @ Y onto less-traveled trail; listen for the tap-a-tap of woodpeckers drilling for lunch

PCL006

Location: 38.2077827453613, -119.978050231934

Old-growth forests frame lower Catfish Lake; head N to second lake

PCL007

Location: 38.2090606689453, -119.977401733398

Upper Catfish Lake; return to main Pinecrest Lake trail

PCL008

Location: 38.2009201049805, -119.971168518066

Cross South Fork Stanislaus River; rocky outcrop ahead

PCL009

Location: 38.1945724487305, -119.977119445801

Good location for a quiet picnic lunch

PCL010

Location: 38.1901359558106, -119.987167358398

Trail turns into pavement; trek .6 mile through Pinecrest Campground back to car

PCL004

Location: 38.199577331543, -119.989311218262

Fine views across picturesque blue waters