Wildflower Waterfall Viewing
Wildflower and Waterfall Self-guided Tours in Plumas County, Northern California
Lakes Basin Recreation Area offers
renowned wildflower viewing in late June and
July, depending on snowmelt. There are
dozens of trails that interlink and lead to
This trail intersects with the Long Lake Trail to Gray Eagle Lodge, which offers a worthy side trip to Halsey Falls. Harnach also recommends the Bear Lake Loop trail as well as the trails to Fern Falls and Frazier Falls.
Long Lake Trail- This trail takes off from either the road leading past Lakes Basin Campground or the road to Gray Eagle Lodge, both located off Gold Lake Road south of Graeagle. The Lakes Basin Campground is off is off Gold Lake Road about 6.5 miles from Hwy. 89, with a paved road leading to the trailheads. Head straight ahead (avoid the side trails) on the easy, but well worn pathway. The Gray Eagle Lodge turnoff is about 5 miles up Gold Lake Rd. from HWY 89; turn right and continue a bit over a quarter mile to the signed trailhead turnoff just west of Gray Eagle Creek. The trail climbs gradually nearly 3 miles past the Lily Lake Trail and Grassy Lake Trail intersection and Long Lake to the Mount Elwell and Mud Lake Trails. There are several loops and alternative paths along the way, each taking you to cool mountain lakes and eventually to the Pacific Crest Trail.
For more waterfall locations see Waterfalls West- this site is a great waterfall resource.
Frazier Falls- (Pictured left) A gentle paved trail into a scenic fenced overlook of the 250-foot falls. The trail-head is located on Old Gold Lake Road, about 6 miles from HWY 89/Gold Lake Rd. intersection. About 1 3/4 miles up the present Gold Lake Rd, take the signed, narrow paved access road on the left for about four miles to the trailhead. This is a great picnic site with restrooms. This hike takes about half an hour roundtrip.
Halsey Falls- (Pictured right) 1 mile south of Graeagle. Turn left (west) on Gold Lake Hwy (Road 24), signed for Gold Lake. Drive 5 miles south to the sign for Gray Eagle Lodge. Turn right and drive to the trailhead on the right for Smith Lake and Gray Eagle Creek (before the lodge, turn right on a short side road leading to the trailhead). The trail to Halsey Falls starts on the left side of the parking lot.