Friday, September 23, 2016

Hike to Loch Leven Lakes 9/4/16

Hike to Loch Leven Lakes
We wanted to get another outdoor adventure in before soccer consumed our weekends. With both boys doing soccer and their games scheduled for Saturdays and one of their practices on Sundays we knew this would be our last chance to do a trip until soccer was over. We were actually thinking about taking it as a last backpacking trip but changed it to a hike since Hubby's shoulder was bothering him. I actually did the research for this trip as I saw Loch Leven lakes as a neat place for backpacking online. Hubby took a look at it and figured this could be a good day hike and it actually worked out nicely.

The usual route to Loch Leven lakes starts near the Big Bend exit off of I-80. However, Hubby found the "back way" into the lakes in a hiking book at the library. Unfortunately we have already returned the book and we can't remember the title but this route avoids a lot of the steep climb in and is supposedly less busy, and you do get to see more lakes. The route we took starts at the Salmon Lake trailhead. It is about an hour and a half drive from Davis. You get there by taking the Yuba Gap exit off of I-80. The only drawback of going this way is the long dirt road to get to the trail head. It was about 5 miles of bumpy road, however our Toyota Camry did fine. From the book it was supposedly a less crowded trail but when we got to the parking lot, there were already many cars. It was a Sunday and Labor Day weekend, so maybe that was why it was so busy. We luckily found a spot that fit our car but as you can see from the pic below, not a huge lot. Also there is no bathroom.
Parking at Salmon Lake trail head
The trail starts out fairly easy and flat. 
Hike to Loch Leven Lakes
There was some cool moss on the trees in some of the forest.
Hike to Loch Leven Lakes
We reached this small pond at about .85 mile according to my Garmin.
pond on trail to Loch Leven Lakes
Some cool rocks we stopped at for a lunch break and got a good view of Salmon Lake below.
Salmon lake below
After lunch we headed back on the trail to Loch Leven lakes. The trail is not all flat as there were some ups and downs and some rocky parts.
Hike to Loch Leven Lakes
Below is Lower Loch Leven lake. 
Lower Loch Leven Lake
Middle Loch Leven lake.
Middle Loch Leven Lake
High Loch Leven lake.
High Loch Leven Lake
Family shot at High Loch Leven.
Hubby wanted to check out a high point.
Got some nice views while also taking a snack break.
High Loch Leven Lake
We even came across a geocache at this high point. 
A look back at Hubby.
We then headed back. Here's a look at Middle Loch Leven again. Middle Loch Leven is the biggest of the three lakes. All are beautiful!
This was another great family outing. I love that the boys enjoy it. It is always cute when we see them holding hands like this. :)
Total mileage including the visit to the high point at High Loch Leven lake is about 6.82 miles and 935 feet of elevation gain. It's a great hike with beautiful lakes to see. Sitting on the rocks at the high point was something that I'm glad we included too. It was great to see the High lake from above. 
Definitely a fun time and a place we would consider going back for a backpacking trip since there were lots of neat camp sites at the lakes.

Have a great weekend!

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