“A great day run to a gorgeous and serene mountain lake or pop up a tent for an overnighter!
— Katie Bryant
Fall Colors · Lake · River/Creek · Spring · Swimming · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife
None that I am aware of. Definitely check road closures before you venture to the trailhead, but if memory serves me right, getting to the trailhead was a breeze.
Only saw one trail runner. Pack a lifestraw or simple water filter so you can refill near the lake. There are streams/springs around the lake to restock before you run back down. There are a few narrow spots along the trail, mind the ankles!
This trail is relatively easy if you just keep moving forward. The run in will take you through varied terrain with plenty of places to rest and enjoy the woods, foliage and wildlife along the way. The incline is gradual with the last little burst up to the lake being the most "difficult" piece of the run, but it is still a gentle trail on the knees both in and out.
Definitely take the time to run around the lake once you reach your destination. There are plenty of little treasures, great views, and places to jump in if the weather is cooperating. Not far from the lake there is also a waterfall. My husband and I discovered it as we could hear it. Follow the sound of the water off to the right side of the lake as you approach it and you'll find it about a quarter mile away. It was a great place to take a refreshing "shower" the next morning.
I highly recommend this as an overnight trip because sunrise over Royal Basin is breathtaking. Lace up and enjoy!
Flora & Fauna
So many mosquitoes during the peak of summer. While we try to avoid the deet, it definitely will keep you sane around the lake. Oh yes, and lots of deer that are obviously not shy around people. Please do not feed the wildlife!