Swim at Long Lake near Truckee

Palisade Creek Trail Parking

Solitude and pristine blue waters surrounded by glaciated Sierra Nevada granite beneath the shadow of Devil's Peak, Long Lake and its rope swings await.

The story goes that twenty or so years ago, long before the advent of the Royal Gorge Cross-Country Ski Area, some local Truckee boys decided to put a couple rope swings up on Long Lake near Soda Springs, CA, and they remain there to this day.

Long Lake sits amongst a cluster of both man-made and glaciated lakes on a ridge between the Yuba and American River canyons. To get there, take the I-80 exit for Soda Springs i.e. Donner Pass Road. Go right on Soda Springs Road and then right again on Pahatsi road, which turns into Kidd Lakes Road.

You will see signs for both Camp Winthers and that you are entering the Royal Gorge Cross Country Ski Resort. Keep going on Kidd Road until it dead ends. 

From the parking area take the Palisade Creek Trail down, across the damn, and stay left until you reach Long Lake. You can't miss the rope swing on the north side of the lake and there is a second on the large pine tree on the south side that you can swim too.

The lake sits at an elevation of 6,700', so even late in the summer the waters can be chilly. Early in the year mosquitos can be a nuisance.

Pack List

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RT Distance 1.5 Miles
Elevation Gain 100 Feet
Activities Chillin, Camping, Photography, Swimming, Hiking
Skill Level Beginner
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Beach
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Groups
Lake
Romantic
Scenic
Wildflowers
Cliff Jumping
Swimming Hole

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Awesome spot! Little cars don't like Kidd Rd, but can make it.

This place was awesome! There were a few moments that I thought my little car was going to get stuck on Kidd road though (especially after it started to torrential downpour). I drive a mazda 3. We made it out, and I now have more respect for my car! We went yesterday (mid september), and it was pretty cold and rained, but even though we didn't swim, it was still an awesome place to hang the hammocks and chill. We also parked at the warming hut.

Fun Little Get Away

Beautiful little spot! We got there early enough in the day that there wasn't that many people. A lot of people had floaters and were out on the lake paddle boarding because it's not too far of a hike in. WARNING!!! While you can drive all the way to the dead end of the road and park there, there is a massive bumpy road to get to the end. It is really really hard to get up and down if you don't have the proper car. I would recommend parking at the parking lot right before the hill, next to the "warming hut" and just hike down the hill, it only adds like a quarter mile (maybe) but it's a lot easier that trying to navigate that hill.


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Nearby Adventures

More Nearby Adventures

Backpack the Palisades Creek Trail

After driving out to Kidd Lakes and parking at the trailhead, you take off through some easy forest hiking past Cascade Lakes and Long Lake.

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Backpacking to Loch Leven Lakes

To get to this trail go west on I-80 from Truckee, Ca. After 17 miles take the Big Bend exit and turn left at the stop sign at the bottom of the exit ramp.

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Hike to the Top of Andesite Peak

From the trail map sign, follow the dirt path straight, following signs for the cross-country skiing route, not snowmobiling. Continue until you see a trail marker.

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