Thursday, April 20, 2017

Lake Clementine Trail to the Dam Hike

Lake Clementine Trail to the Dam Hike
It's been more than a couple of weeks since we hiked the Lake Clementine Trail to the Dam. This post is long overdue and I didn't want to skip it because it was such a beautiful day and the pics I took are definitely worth sharing.

Hubby found this hike in the 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles of Sacramento book that we checked out at the library. The hike is in Auburn and about 50 minutes from where we live. There is a fee to park. It is $10 and you pay at a booth where there is a ranger and then you put the ticket receipt on your car dash after paying.
The hike is very popular. The parking area where the ranger booth was located was full so we had to park on the other side of the street.
Lake Clementine Trail Parking area
For the Lake Clementine trailhead we walked across a bridge and the start of the trail is marked by a gate labeled trail 139.
Lake Clementine Trail Trailhead
After about a .5 mile, we came across our first sighting of the Foresthill Bridge. It is the tallest bridge in California at 731 feet above the riverbed!
Hiking Lake Clementine Trail
 The kiddos enjoyed the puddles on the way.
Hiking Lake Clementine Trail
There is some single track trail and you do need to watch out for mountain bikers. We saw a couple on the trail as we hiked.
Hiking Lake Clementine Trail
The gravel trail ends once we come to this gate. Follow the paved road to the left.
gate on Lake Clementine trail
At about 1.85 miles is this sign with only .4 left to the dam.
sign to Lake Clementine
 The dam is really neat to see and I love the rainbows you get with the water there.
North Fork Dam via Lake Clementine Trail
You can walk down closer to the bottom as there is a trail to go down. Just be careful heading down because it's a little steep at the start of the trail going down. Also be mindful of wet rocks since they can be slippery when you get closer to the bottom. My 7 year old didn't have much trouble.
Rainbow at the North Fork Dam
Here's the top of the dam with Lake Clementine.
Lake Clementine
 Family pic by the dam.
The trail is an out and back trail, so after having lunch and hanging out for a bit and taking in the falls of the dam, we headed back. Here's another shot of the Foresthill Bridge on the way back to the trailhead.
Hiking Lake Clementine Trail w/ Foresthill Bridge
According to my Garmin, the hike was 4.8 miles roundtrip with 799 feet of elevation gain. There is a good climb both ways, so I wouldn't say it's a breeze. I'd say it's a moderate hike but great for kids. 
Hiking Lake Clementine Trail route and elevation
Overall, I was pleased with this hike. It was neat to see the Foresthill Bridge and hanging out at the dam was really nice. I read that there is also a water hole, "Clark's hole" where people swim, but for some reason we missed it. Seems like it would be a great thing for those that hike the trail in the summer. I would definitely recommend this hike to others especially since it isn't too far. The dam and seeing a rainbow makes for great picture taking opportunities. :)

Happy Hiking!

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