Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike

Difficulty
This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Moderate
Duration
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
2.5-3.5h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
8.9 km
Elevation
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
365 m
User Ratings
These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
Be the first to add a review!
Directions to Trailhead

The Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike is an amazing adventure above South Lake Tahoe that boasts breathtaking scenery. Traverse the slopes of Mount Tallac to not one, but two charming alpine lakes that overlook the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range.

Guide-book quality info for over 8,000 trails

View Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike on Map

View Map

Subscribe to our newsletter

Get a weekly dose of discounts and inspiration for adventure lovers

Route Description for Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike

Immerse yourself in California’s high country along the Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike. Travel through meadowlands, mixed forests, and granite gardens along his trek. Offering views of several picturesque alpine lakes, this hike is a lake-lovers paradise! As this route travels to high altitudes, we suggest wearing layers as insurance against the chilly conditions. Additionally, we recommend checking the forecast prior to your hike to mitigate the chances of getting caught in an afternoon storm. Don’t forget to charge your camera, the beauty of this trail is unparalleled!

Embark on your excursion along the Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike from the trailhead off Mount Tallac Road. From here, venture southwest along the Floating Island/Mount Tallac Trail. This path will guide you along the ridgeline above the western shore of Fallen Leaf Lake. Enjoy the sights of adventurers enjoying the alpine waters below, as you climb towards Mount Tallac. Eventually, you will reach Floating Island Lake, which is named for the grassy island in the middle of the alpine pool.

Revel in the scenes of the grassy lake, then continue onwards to Cathedral Lake. From the shoreline, you will be granted sweeping views of Lake Tahoe, Fallen Leaf Lake, and the encompassing Sierra Nevada Mountains. After reveling in the panoramas, retrace your steps along the route back to the trailhead.

Getting to the Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike Trailhead

The Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike departs from the trailhead at the end of Mount Tallac Road.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    No

  • When to do

    Year-round

  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    Older Children only

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    High

  • Route Type

    Out and back

Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike Elevation Graph

Weather Forecast

Check Area Weather

Floating Island and Cathedral Lakes Hike Reviews

Add a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Nearby Trails

Nearby Regions

Subscribe to our newsletter

Get a weekly dose of discounts and inspiration for adventure lovers

Tours

Routes

Blogs