Granite Lake


10.0 miles 2000' elevation gain

best season: 

2:55 drive

dogs welcome

The hike starts along the rugged canyon of Swift Creek, past a waterfall, and up to a impressive footbridge over Swift Creek.  You then head up forested Granite Creek past springs and flowery meadows.  There are campsites scattered along this climb, and they may present attractive alternatives to camping at the lake.  The lake has big craggy mountains around.

The lake is beautiful.  There is an alder thicket between the main trail and the lake.  But if you persevere you can access the lakeshore.

The start of the hike can be quite warm.  If weather prediction is for hot weather, it is recommended to arrive in early evening and hike in a short ways to one of the first campsites. And get an early start the next day to do the bulk of the climb in the cool of the morning.

This is a popular hiking area so avoid holiday weekends. If the parking lot is less than filled, there should be good campsites available.

The trail is well built. However, from the bridge up to the lake it has inexplicably been allowed to overgrow; bring your loppers.

Bears may be present and may like to eat your food.  May want to bring a bear-proof canister.

Wilderness Permits required, and can be picked up at self-service kiosks at Forest Service stations in Weaverville or Mule Creek Fire Station. A California Campfire Permit is required for campfires or gas stoves and can be obtained here.

This hike is in Shasta-Trinity National Forest; owned by the public, managed by Shasta-Trinity National Forest. Backpacking welcomed; campfires welcomed except during campfire restriction periods.

current weather forecast:
at trailhead
at lake


Maps  (July 2022 edition)

Avenza version

Adobe PDF version

Gaia GPS-compatible MBtiles

KML track of hike