“A trail along a spectacular volcanic ridge with scenic views of the Sierra Crest and majestic geological formations.”
— George Lamson
A valid trail pass is required from the Royal Gorge ski resort for winter skiing.
Features: Birding — Views — Wildflowers — Wildlife
The trail is rocky and loose is many places. Mountain bikes and dogs are allowed on this trail.
This trail is a mixture of multi-track and singletrack trail that traverses the top of a volcanic ridge with sheer cliffs and spectacular views of the Pacific Crest at Donner Summit. It is a ski trail in the winter and a popular running trail in the summer. The trail is part of a network of trails that provide access to the Royal Gorge open space area. It can be traversed in both directions and is open to hiking, running and mountain biking in the summer and skiing in the winter. During the snowy months, parts of it are usually groomed for both Nordic and skate skiing by the resort.
Access to the trail is via the connected Bogus Basin Trail
(see map). The closest trailhead is the Hoelter Hall trailhead at the southern end of Serene Lakes. The trail starts at the Bogus Basin ski warming hut and there is a moderate climb up a multi-track trail to get to the ridge line. Once at the ridge you can go west up to Rowton Peak to view the American River headwater basin. Follow the rocky singletrack trail east to traverse along the sheer cliffs of the undulating ridge line. Large "hoodoo" formations of remnants of volcanic lava flows and lahars line the south face of the cliffs. In early summer Pink Star Onion carpet the ridge line. The path back down to the Bogus Basin Trail
from the ridge is approximately 3/4 of a mile along the ridge line. You can go further out along the ridge line to an overlook marked by two large Western White Pine trees.
The trail along the ridge is completely exposed and can be quite warm and dry in the summer. Take plenty of water. The rocky trail demands good running footwear.
Flora & Fauna
The trail cuts through a Lodgepole/Fir/Jeffrey Pine forest and during the summer is populated by a large collection of Sierra wildflowers. The forest is the home to deer, ground squirrels, bobcat, martens, bears and the occasional mountain lion. The rocky ridge is also populated with many old Mountain Junipers.