Back to index Penner, Crooked and Carr Lakes Hike
Trip Date:  02/20/2015

: 12.9 Miles

Vertical Gain: 1390'

Group Size: 2

Hike Rating:  Easy   Moderate    Hard    Strenuous
Penner Lake Loop Route
Download GPX GPX for this trip
Penner Lake Loop Elevation Profile
Start Coordinates:   N 39 24.751, W 120 39.855     End Coordinates:   Same as starting coordinates
Car Shuttle Req'd:   No Parking Directions:   Take Highway 80 to the Highway 20 turnoff a couple exits west of Cisco Grove.   Follow the road back under the freeway and continue on Highway 20 until you get to Highway 18, also known as Bowman Lake Road.   Stay on this road for a little over 8 miles until you get to the parking coordinates indicated where the road becomes dirt and there is a small open clearing on the left side of the road. 
Hazards of Note:   Some of the Rock Lake Trail after Loney Meadow is a little faint but there are trail markers along the way.  The rest of the trails are well marked. Crowd Factor:   Limited to busy.  The Rock Lake trail is not heavily utilized, but the second section along the Crooked Lakes trail leads to popular Penner Lake and the Round Lake Trail back to Feeley and Carr Lakes is very popular in the spring and summertime.
General Notes:
From the parking at the Loney Meadows trailhead, start your walk up a dirt jeep trail across the road.  On the side of the trail you will find an old abandoned cabin that has two loft rooms upstairs but is filled with rat droppings and you should be wary of exploring too closely.  Continue on the dirt trail as it bends north, and a junction on your right will be the way you come back at the end of the hike.  Less than a mile ahead is a signed area for Loney Meadows, which offers a 1 mile loop around the meadow with information signs providing details of some of the history and wildlife of the meadow.  Turn right at this first sign, and walk along the southern edge of the meadow until you cross the river and parallel the river for most of the rest of this trail.   There is elevation gain here in sections, especially once you pass Bull Pen Lake on your right.  Stay to your left at a junction which will lead to Lindsey Lake, and then a mile past Bull Pen you will reach Lower Rock Lake, with a scenic setting nestled against a rocky south shore.  Just past this is Upper Rock Lake, and past this lake you will find the junction with the Crooked Lakes trail.  Turn south, and follow this trail for the next three miles, wandering along the east shore of Penner Lake after a mile.  The trail then begins a gradual descent for the rest of the way, skirting past a number of the Crooked Lakes on your left as you continue south.  Island Lake soon appears after about 2 1/2 miles on this trail, and this has good spots on the southwest shore overlooking the lake back to the north.
Just past this lake you will intersect with the Round Lake trail, where you will turn right and head past a small lake on the left, then larger Feeley Lake on the right and finally Carr Lake on the left again.  Follow the dirt roads out of Carr Lake back to your parking area, another 2 miles away.

The sign at the trailhead near Loney Meadows. Trailhead sign
The old abandoned cabin near the south end of Loney Meadow, as well as the view from the upper floor out the rectangular window. Abandoned cabin Cabin view
The view of Loney Meadow looking east of this very idyllic location. Loney Meadow 
One of the reassuring signs that we really were still on the right path as we headed past Loney Meadow. Sign
Another meadow past Loney Meadow that was filled with Aspen.  This would be a blaze of color in the fall. Aspen Meadow 
Lots of signs on the way, but some of them were pretty old. More trail signs
Mark making his way up the section that has some pretty significant elevation gain all in a short time. Starting the elevation gain
Junction with the Lindsey Lakes Trail from the south.   Trail junction
We were excited at the first snowfield sighting we made along the way, but by the end we were pretty tired of the stuff. First snow sighting
A look at Lower Rock lake early in the morning and a little bit into the sun.  Nice setting and nobody around. Lower Rock Lake     
Upper Rock Lake, with just a little bit of frozen water on the south end of the lake. Upper Rock Lake
The sign at the trail junction where we turned south onto the Crooked Lakes trail.  This poor sign has seen some tough winters in the past. Trail junction with Crooked Lakes trail
From this point on we had a lot of snow on the trail, making finding our way slightly more difficult at times. More snow now for the rest of the trip
To the east were some nice views of Haystack Mountain north of Grouse Ridge area. great views
Penner Lake is about 1 1/2 miles south from the trail junction on the Crooked Lakes trail, and is a jewel in the middle of this location. Penner Lake
Very scenic views around the lake, and a lot of campsites as well, indicating a pretty popular destination. More Penner
Looking northeast from the trail toward the Crooked Lakes valley area. Crooked Lakes area
A first look at the frozen over Island Lake, with the Grouse Ridge Lookout Tower in the distance. Island Lake
A closer look at the Grouse Ridge Lookout Tower, which is reservable as an overnight destination during the summers. Closer look at the lookout
The view from our lunch spot looking north across Island Lake. Island Lunch
The last of the three trails we would take today, just past Island Lake.  We picked up the Round Lake trail and headed west past Carr Lake area. Round Lake Trail jct
Much of this section of trail was along the frozen over south side of Feeley Lake, making some of the footing a bit treacherous. Feeley Lake
Having a car parked here would cut about 2 1/2 miles off the loop, but you would need to shuttle between the two locations. How you can shorten the trip
GPX image of the hike. GPS track of hike