15.3 mile trek to Echo Summit. Optional side trip to Echo Lake (c'mon, you're almost there, just another 2 miles). Duration: Overnight.

Between Big Meadow and Echo Summit, the trail wanders from meadows to lakes to creeks, and through dense stands of pine, fir and aspen. The trail heads south from Big Meadow trailhead across a gently rolling landscape of grassy meadows and fragrant conifer stands. The shaded shores of Round Lake is nestled beneath high cliffs. Further on, the TRT merges with the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail (PCT) and swings north through flower filled Meiss Meadows and alongside the cool head waters of the Upper Truckee River. The trail then climbs past granite lined shores of Showers Lake and through a rocky bowl where seasonal creeks tumble down steep ridges into lush meadows. Further north the landscape becomes more rugged and much drier, and opens into occasional views of Lake Tahoe. The trail drops over a granite ridge in a long steep downhill traverse before leveling off. A small stream outlined with ferns and flowers provides a refreshing respite before the short ascent to the Echo Summit Trailhead. Source

Key Points:
  • Water - is available from Round Lake, the Upper Truckee River and Showers Lake. All water found on the trail must be treated before drinking.
  • Caution – Be prepared for sudden weather changes, strong winds, and high altitudes. Please carry a map, as many unmarked trails and fire roads cross the TRT.
  • Signage - The trail is marked at intervals with light blue, triangular TRT logo signs
  • Leave-No-Trace—The TRTA supports and encourages LNT practices while on the trail. (see map for details).
  • Camping – is allowed within 300’ of the trail and 200’ away from a water source.
  • Fire – Fire danger can be extreme, and fires, camp stoves, and smoking may be prohibited. Check trailhead kiosks or call the USFS (530-543-2600) for current regulations.
  • Shuttle car - you'll want to park one near the Echo Summit trailhead if you're only planning to go the 15.3 miles to the summit

Pack List

  • Hiking boots
  • Tent
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • Food
  • Fire Permit (if making a campfire or using a gas stove)
  • Trekking poles (Optional)
Show More
Activities Camping, Backpacking, Hiking
Skill Level Intermediate
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Features
Dog Friendly
Lake
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating:  Rate this Adventure

pack light, tread lighter


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

Nearby Adventures

More Nearby Adventures

Hike to Round Lake through Big Meadow

6 Saves

Hike from Big Meadow to Round Lake

23 Saves

Backpack Showers Lake

13 Saves