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Shirley Canyon Trail



5.8 mile 9.4 kilometer out and back
68% Runnable


Ascent: 1,899' 579 m
Descent: -1,898' -579 m
High: 8,130' 2,478 m
Low: 6,235' 1,900 m


Avg Grade: 12% (7°)
Max Grade: 57% (30°)


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Trail shared by Nick Wilder

Waterfalls, wildflowers, and huge granite boulders take you from the valley floor to High Camp.

Nick Wilder

Features Lake · River/Creek · Waterfall


This run is full of highlights - a big waterfall in the first half mile, tons of side streams and big boulders to explore, Shirley Lake, and finally the resort complex of High Camp. You can make this a one-way run by taking the tram (free in the down direction!).

Need to Know

You can make this run half as long - and much easier on the knees - by taking the tram down. It's free if you get yourself to the top!

Runner Notes

Quite a good run, though there is one steep section where, at this altitude, most people will need to walk about a quarter mile.


From the end of Squaw Village, follow Squaw Peak Road to it's very end, passing some nondescript ski-area mechanics to the well-signed trailhead. The trail starts here and is quite beautiful right off the bat. Follow blue paint marks on rocks and enjoy the creek, which you'll come quite close to several times before getting to your first waterfall at .3 miles.

Pass another nice waterfall at .8 miles. Many people turn around here, but the trail remains nice all the way to the tram (which you can take down for free!), so pressing on... pass a very steep section up rock slabs and emerge into more open country. The views open up and the flowers here can great in the right season. Enjoy Shirley Lake and then follow a short stretch of more singletrack up to High Camp.

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Sep 27, 2017
Garth Schulz
Rad trail with tricky footwork, lots of boulders and slabs 5.8mi
Sep 30, 2016
Candy Almquist
Third time but next time will make it to the top!!!! Wish the waterfall was flowing! 2mi

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 19 votes


in Squaw Valley


  4.5 from 19 votes
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in Squaw Valley


in California


24 Views Last Month
13,080 Since Aug 12, 2016



New sign installed to alert hikers to the challenge ahead.
Sep 1, 2018 near Sunnysi…, CA
The mountains
Dec 1, 2017 near Sunnysi…, CA
Hi High Camp!
Sep 1, 2018 near Sunnysi…, CA
Ski run in summertime - looking down Oregon Trail
Sep 1, 2018 near Sunnysi…, CA


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