Hike Round Top Summit and Winnemucca Lake Loop

Alpine County, California



6.6 miles

Elevation Gain

1272 ft

Route Type



Added by Lindsay Cameron

A beautiful, challenging hike featuring woods, streams, wildflowers galore, alpine lakes and mountain summits. What more could you want?

This hike begins near the Woods Lake campground. Start off by hiking towards Winnemucca Lake. You will begin your journey going through the forest beside a crystal-clear stream. Soon the trail opens up to become more open, full of all colours of wild flowers. You follow this breathtaking trail up through meadows to the blue-green waters of Winnemucca Lake (~1.5miles). Take a well-deserved break at the lake, have a picnic, eat a snack and enjoy a dip in the cool waters. 

When you're ready to keep going, you will have passed a small path intersection right in front of the lake.  Head West (if your back is at the lake, turn left) towards Round Top Lake. There will be signs. You will cross the stream and hike upwards. After ~1mile, Round Top Lake will be just over the next ridge. 

Round Top Lake is another beautiful place to have a rest. From here, you will be able to see The Sisters, Mount Round Top and Fourth of July Peak. 

On the eastern part of the lake (the part closest to where you arrive), there will be a path that heads up to Mount Round Top (the purple line on the map I uploaded). This is a TOUGH trail, very steep and full of switchbacks. The Summit is at 10,380ft and gives you a breathtaking bird's eye view of Carson Pass. This ridge is thin and falls away steeply on both sides and is not recommended for children or inexperienced hikers. This is a there-and-back type trail, so once you reach the end of the trail at the ridge, you can turn around and head back to Round Top Lake. If you do not feel like exploring the Summit, skip this paragraph and continue with the trail. 

From Round Top Lake, you can follow the X-intersection by turning right and taking Lot Cabin Mine Trail for 2miles back through meadows and then forest to Woods Lake Campground. 

Parking: You can park at the Woods Lake Campground. Its $8 to park (you just fill out the envelope and leave the top part in your windshield). 

Accessibility: Family-friendly, dog-friendly, even horse-friendly I think!  No biking though, and no wheelchair access, etc.

Camping: There are campsites available near the trailhead if you'd like to make it a full weekend adventure. Check out Woods Lake Campground. I think you can also free camp, but you would likely need a wilderness permit (free from various information stations or online)

Things to bring:

  • water! maybe a snack
  • sunscreen (a decent amount of this trail is unshaded)
  • camera :) 
  • a bathing suit + towel (if you'd like to swim in the lakes)
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Dog Friendly
Family Friendly
Swimming Hole

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