Shealor Stunner

Hiking and camping at Tahoe's Shealor Lake near Kirkwood

Hike and Camp at Shealor Lake near Kirkwood

Robust mountains, striking slabs of granite, and deep green pine reflections make Shealor Lake near Kirkwood resort a jewel of the El Dorado National Forest. Reach this alpine oasis on a 2.6-mile (round-trip) out-and-back hike (or overnight backpacking and camping trip). The trail starts with a moderate climb through the forest, but at the tree line it quickly opens up to a rocky plateau.

Gallery image 1 of 3
Gallery image 2 of 3
Gallery image 3 of 3

From the top of the ridge Shealor Lake can be spotted in the distance, its glistening water beckoning as you make your way down some switchbacks and follow large granite plates for a short scramble to the shoreline. The trail is pretty easy to discern, but a myriad of cairns left by fellow hikers clearly mark the path to the lake, which is enclosed by a ring of granite. Take a swim and use giant granite slabs to sit on (or stargaze—there are several campsites to choose from around the lake).

BONUS CAMP: Shealor Lake has disperse camping. You will need a permit for gas stoves. In the summer/fall of 2020 campfires are not allowed.

The trailhead is easily accessible off Hwy. 88 and has a large parking area, but no restrooms. NO campfires for summer/fall 2020. Dog-friendly!

Trending Stories Northern CA

View all Stories
  1. Image that represents the story
    Sponsored

    Hidden Stairways of SF: Urban Hike

    This guided hike sold out fast, but new dates have been added! Get outdoors and explore the hidden stairways and gardens of San Francisco anew. Small group and socially distanced.

    View
  2. Image that represents the story

    Lookout for This View!

    Sierra Buttes Lookout, at a lofty 8,591 feet, is a memory maker for its pucker-worthy stairway to the tower’s balcony. It's a 5-mile (round-trip) hike to reach it. And the reward? Epic!

    View
  3. Image that represents the story

    Ah, Good Point

    Ready for a rewarding view? Head to to one of the Peninsula’s favorite promontories: Mori Point. Climb your way up the Bootlegger’s Steps to the Mori Point headland for awesome vantages of the San Mateo Coast.

    View
  4. Image that represents the story

    Sleeper Hit

    It's all about the water, and the camping, at Utica Reservoir in Stanislaus National Forest, a High Sierra reservoir perfect for kayak explorations and pitching your tent lakeside..

    View

Trending Stories SoCal

View all Stories
  1. Image that represents the story

    Duck, Duck, Goose!

    Try to get a first-come, first-served campsite at one of the Lakes Basin’s lakeside campgrounds. We love Goose Lake Campground, where there are just 14 sites and no motorized boats.

    View
  2. Image that represents the story

    Shealor Stunner

    Robust mountains, striking slabs of granite, and deep green pine reflections make Shealor Lake near Kirkwood resort a jewel of the El Dorado National Forest. Reach this alpine oasis on a 1.3-mile hike.

    View
  3. Image that represents the story
    Sponsored

    National Parks Road Trip: Circle of Discovery!

    Love national parks? Love road trips? Combine the two on one fabulous Circle of Discovery route in Northern California and Southern Oregon! This itinerary features 7 national parks with wondrous features.

    View
  4. Image that represents the story

    Peak-a-View!

    Crater Lake is the deepest lake in the entire country and the seventh deepest in the world. For one of the very best perspectives of this shining blue beauty, hike up to Garfield Peak.

    View