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Hole in the Ground Loop

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.0 (3) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

Amazing views and alpine lakes.


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Map Key

16.3

Miles

26.3

KM

94%

Runnable

8,051' 2,454 m

High

6,459' 1,969 m

Low

1,939' 591 m

Up

1,942' 592 m

Down

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

24%

Max Grade (14°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Lake · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Overview

The views begin early on and continue throughout this High Sierra classic. The trail varies from smooth dirt among pines to decomposed granite amongst boulders above treeline. There are options to visit beautiful alpine lakes by taking short connector trails.

Runner Notes

This loop contains a 5 mile section of road, which can be avoided by using two cars. There are plans to construct a trail connecting the bottom of this trail to make a complete singletrack loop.

Description

Hole In The Ground begins at a trailhead approximately 1/4 mile north of the I-80 Boreal Ski Resort exit. There is a large sign and map at the trailhead for your reference. The trail begins climbing switchbacks on smooth dirt through a pine forest. You'll ascend above treeline while traversing Andestite Ridge until coming to a high point with a lookout across Castle Valley to Castle Peak.

The trail then descends among large granite features. At the 5.2 mile point from the trailhead, there is an option to take the end of the Sand Ridge Lake Trail on the left to Sand Ridge Lake, a 1/4 mile connector well worth the view.

After continuing on Hole In The Ground, you'll cross a forest service road and at the 10 mile mark, there is another connector to the right providing access to Lower Lola Montez Lake which is 1/10 of a mile off the trail.

After this, the trail quickly descends on loose, rocky terrain with large step-downs built from railroad ties. At the bottom of this section make a left on a gravel road and follow it for approximately 1 mile to another short section of trail leading to Sheritt lane, a paved road.

In order to return to your starting point, you'll have to travel just under 5 miles on road. Take a right on Sheritt, you'll end up at a fire station where you have the option to park and shuttle or continue to Donner Pass road to return 5 miles to Boreal Ski Resort.

Contacts

Shared By:

Jco25 Colby

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 3 votes

#2

in Royal Gorge

#3277

Overall
  4.0 from 3 votes
5 Star
33%
4 Star
33%
3 Star
33%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#2

in Royal Gorge

#497

in California

#3,277

Overall
23 Views Last Month
4,268 Since Apr 6, 2015
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
67%
0%
33%
0%

Photos

Castle Peak
Aug 27, 2018 near Truckee, CA
Castle Peak from Andesite ridge
Mar 31, 2015 near Truckee, CA
Lower Lola Montez lake
Mar 31, 2015 near Truckee, CA
Perfect path (on Hole In The Ground Trail) that makes you feel like you're in the backcountry
Apr 9, 2015 near Truckee, CA
Castle Peak through the trees on Castle Valley Road.
May 19, 2019 near Truckee, CA
Castle Peak across the open meadows surrounding Castle Valley Road.
May 19, 2019 near Truckee, CA

Weather


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Check-Ins

Aug 25, 2018
Chad V
https://www.strava.com/activities/1797531178 15.8mi — 4h 02m