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Placerville, California

Placerville, California is a top destination for outdoor adventures. One of the best trails and outdoor activities in the area is the El Dorado Trail. This multi-purpose trail stretches for 35 miles, offering scenic views of rolling hills, and passing through historic mining towns. The trail is a mix of paved and dirt paths, making it suitable for a variety of fitness levels. For a unique outdoor attraction, visit the Gold Bug Park and Mine. Here, you can explore a real gold mine and learn about the area's rich history. For water activities, the South Fork American River offers rafting and kayaking opportunities. These are must-visit outdoor activities when in Placerville.

Top Spots in and near Placerville

  • Truckee, California

    Backpack the Palisades Creek Trail

    4.0
    15 mi / 2200 ft gain
    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. Pay attention to the cairns marking the trail as you traverse across a large granite section with Devils Peak to your West. The trail is easy to follow and ...
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  • Olympic Valley, California

    Hike the Shirley Canyon Cascades Trail

    3.6 mi / 2109 ft gain
    This trail has lots of elevation over a short distance, be warned! The Shirley Canyon Cascades Trail is close to Olympic Valley in the North Lake Tahoe region. Dogs are allowed on this trail if kept on leash. 
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  • Olympic Valley, California

    Hike the Thunder Mountain Trail

    5.0
    3.2 mi / 2000 ft gain
    The Thunder Mountain Trail is the perfect hike to explore the Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows. Squaw may be famed for its mountain ski runs in the winter, but when the snow melts in the summer, beautiful alpine meadows line the mountain and the ski runs turn into hiking trails! The Thunder Mountain T...
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  • Penn Valley, California

    Visit the Bridgeport Covered Bridge

    4.0
    The famed and picturesque Bridgeport Covered Bridge, spanning the width of the Yuba River, was originally built in 1862. It was an integral passage for a freight hauling route from San Fransisco to Nevada. This historic site is now protected and is no longer able to be walked or driven through as...
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  • Truckee, California

    Swim at Long Lake near Truckee

    3.7
    1.5 mi / 100 ft gain
    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 ...
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  • Nevada City, California

    Hike the Diggins Loop Trail

    5.0
    2.7 mi
    Check in and pay for your parking or present California State Parks Pass at the museum building in North Bloomfield.  After paying for parking there are several different options to get onto the Diggins Loop trail.  Access to the Diggins Loop trail can be found by the Park Headcounters by jumping...
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  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Catch a Sunset at Keys Beach

    Owned by the State of California, Keys Beach sits at the end of a peninsula bordered by the Tahoe Keys marina inlet to the west and the Upper Truckee River to the east. This relative isolation along with its only access being by water or a single trail keeps the beach remarkably quiet relative to...
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  • Arnold, California

    Snow Camp at Bull Run Lake

    15 mi / 2400 ft gain
    This is a long, beautiful snowshoe to a lake that is very accessible in the summer but almost untouched in the winter! There are a couple of ways to access the lake during the winter, but this is the most interesting: Starting at the easternmost sno-park along Highway 4 going east of Bear Valley,...
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  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Bike to Star Lake

    5.0
    21 mi / 2300 ft gain
    Start out at the top of Corral Loop, in South Lake Tahoe, and begin the climb up Armstrong Pass. After the 4 mile ride up, you reach the split to either Mr. Toads or Star Lake. Continue another 2.5 miles up the steep and sandy climb to the saddle just below Freel Peak, the tallest peak in the bas...
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  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Bike around Lake Tahoe

    5.0
    72.2 mi / 4308 ft gain
    You'll want to wake up early for this adventure. Be sure to have breakfast and hydrate before you start.  I suggest going clockwise around the lake. The elevation hit me. I also went with a group of friends, and what's nice about going in a group though is that you can stop every so often to make...
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  • Tahoe City, California

    Paddle Commons Beach

    5.0
    Commons Beach is a small beach and park on the northwest side of the lake. It is located very close to the CA-89 exit, so is ideal for road trip stops. There is a park for kids, and a grassy area near the beach. The beach itself is on the smaller side, but is relatively uncrowded. This area of th...
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  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Stand Up Paddle Board Yoga at Lakeview Commons

    Stand up paddle board yoga is some of the most difficult and rewarding yoga there is and you would be hard-pressed to find a more beautiful place to do so than on the south shore of Lake Tahoe.  Lakeview Commons is a city park that provide direct lake access for the public, including boats, along...
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  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Hike to Freel Peak

    5.0
    7.3 mi / 2474 ft gain
    Mt. Tallac may be one of the Lake Tahoe Basin's most famous peaks to hike because of its fantastic views of Lake Tahoe, but my personal favorite view in Tahoe is from the top of Freel Peak or Jobs Sister. Freel Peak is the tallest peak in the Lake Tahoe Basin at 10,881 feet.From the top of Freel...
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  • Markleeville, California

    Backpack to Grouse Lake

    4.7
    11.43 mi / 2283 ft gain
    It is a 6 mile hike to Grouse Lake. You begin at the trailhead which is right by Damsite Campground at Upper Blue Lake. Park in the dirt parking area and then cross the metal footbridge, and you will see the trailhead marker on your left. The trail takes you into the Mokelumne Wilderness. Follow...
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  • Arnold, California

    Backpack To Wheeler Lake

    5.0
    7.8 mi / 1000 ft gain
    The trail to Wheeler Lake begins at the Woodchuck Basin Trailhead. This trailhead is located a little over a mile east of Lake Alpine on Highway 4. The trail starts off relatively flat and winds through forests and meadows, taking you into the Mokelumne Wilderness. Time it right and you'll be met...
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  • Galt, California

    Hike the Cosumnes River Walk Trail

    3.1 mi / 16 ft gain
    This trail is a short, easy, accessible and beautiful trail for a nice afternoon walk (or photoshoot).   I recommend the River Walk Trail (~3 miles).  It is flat and easy to walk.  There are multiple loops so you can turn back at any time. There are small bridges, access to the water, meadows, e...
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