I'm revising the blog! Stay tuned for a whole new look and lots of new content!


Eagle Lake Hike (West Shore, Lake Tahoe)

Eagle Lake hike ~ one of my top picks for family adventures at Tahoe!

Eagle Lake is a pristine body of water located just above the southwest “corner” of Lake Tahoe, almost due west of Emerald Bay. The hike up to the lake is only about a mile, but the operative word is “up.” Nearly every inch of the trek features an elevation gain, generally moderate but sometimes steep (in places, steep enough that they have steps cut into the granite). There are some spots where you’re scrambling over rocks, and others where you’re walking on sandy granite — no real “climbing” required, but some agility and good shoes are definitely called for.

My almost 5 year-old, who is a seasoned hiker, did fine, but I didn’t see any kids younger than her making it all the way to the lake.

I remember doing this hike with my parents as a child, so I was excited to bring my kids last week. They LOVED it! While I think we would’ve heard complaints on another trail with this much elevation gain, the terrain kept them interested and the promise of a snack at the lake gave them motivation.

The trail is very popular, and parking can be a nightmare (the trailhead shares parking with the uber popular Emerald Bay). If you want to visit, plan to arrive EARLY and anticipate a potential walk along Highway 89 from whatever spot you can grab.

If you’re not up for the full lake trek, Eagle Falls is a short walk from the trailhead, and there are pools above it where people splash in the water. (I personally wouldn’t feel comfortable with the proximity to the falls, but 🤷‍♀️.)

If you DO decide to go all the way to the lake, plan to stay a while. Some people swim, others just wet their feet, but all take a break to soak in the pristine mountain scene. If you’re willing to adventure off around the shore, you can find quiet little coves for a picnic. It’s heavenly.

There are restrooms/picnic tables at the trailhead. Dogs on leash are welcome. Right now there’s no fee for day hikers, but usually it’s $5/car.

If you have an outdoorsy family and kids 4+ who like to hike, definitely check out this gem!