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Forest Service Ridge Trail

Intermediate

Trail

1.3 mile 2.0 kilometer point to point
87% Runnable
Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 285' 87 m
Descent: -134' -41 m
High: 7,321' 2,231 m
Low: 7,035' 2,144 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 6% (4°)
Max Grade: 29% (16°)

Dogs

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Trail shared by George Lamson

A trail along a volcanic ridge that borders the scenic Donner Summit Valley and Serene Lakes watershed.

George Lamson

Features Birding · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Description

This trail traverses the prominent volcanic ridge that separates the scenic Donner Summit Valley and the Serene Lakes basin watershed. It is part of a network of connecting trails that access the Donner Summit open space area. While the trail can be done in either direction, it is easily accessed from the east end of Tamarack Way in Serene Lakes.

The trail intersects the Switchback Trail on the east side of the Serene Lakes community. The trail starts with a moderately steep climb up the west end of the ridge. In the dry summer months, the tread of the trail can be quite loose and slippery. Once at the top of the ridge, the trail follows the rocky ridge east through a sparse forest of Lodgepole, Fir and Western White Pine. In early summer, the ridge is covered with wild Pink Star Onion followed later by Mariposa Lilies and Sulphur Buckwheat. There are great views of the Donner Summit Valley and Sierra Crest to the north and the Serene Lakes basin to the south.

The trail ends at the east end of the ridge and connects up to the Claim Jumper Trail and Bogus Basin Trail. This trail is completely exposed with very little shade and can be quite warm in the summer months. It can also be quite windy.

Flora & Fauna

The trail cuts through a Lodgepole/Fir/Western White 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, coyotes, bears and the occasional mountain lion. There is a wide variety of Northern Sierra birdlife.

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Trail Ratings

  3.0 from 1 vote

#11

in Royal Gorge

#24040

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  3.0 from 1 vote
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Trail Rankings

#11

in Royal Gorge

#3,005

in California

#24,040

Overall
2 Views Last Month
68 Since Dec 31, 2016
Intermediate

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