Back to index Shriner Lake Hike
Trip Date:  06/09/2018

: 4.5 Miles

Vertical Gain: 400'

Group Size: 10
Hike Rating:  Easy   Moderate    Hard   Strenuous
Shriner Lake Hike Route
Download GPXGPX for this trip
Shriner Lake Elevation Profile (Note: This elevation profile is only from the lake back to the trailhead)
Start Coordinates:   N 38 31.408
W 120 10.414
    End Coordinates:   Same as Start Coordinates
Car Shuttle Req'd:   No Parking Directions:   Take Highway 88 to the Bear River Reservoir exit and head downhill and cross over the dam.  Continue on this paved road, passing the South Shore and Pardoes Point campgrounds.  After 4.25 miles on this road, take the first left turn at Forest Service Road 8N14, which is still on paved surface.  Follow the signs to the Cole Creek Campground.  Stay on this road for another 5.7 miles.  You will start to see signs for Tanglefoot Trailhead.  Following these signs, turn left and cross two bridges over Cole Creek.  After this point a dirt road continues 3.8 miles to the trailhead.  On this road ignore various spur trails to the left and right.  About 1/3 mile before the trailhead there is a fork in the road.  Stay to the left to reach the trail, passing along a tight squeeze between shrubbery which might want to have its way with your vehicle's paint.
Hazards of Note:   Getting to the trailhead is one of the hardest parts of this hike.   Footing on the granite section of trail down into the canyon can be tricky, and is probably one of the reasons this trail is called "Tanglefoot."  

Crowd Factor:   Minimal.  The trailhead is not easy to get to, and the trail heads into a pretty remote part of the Mokelumne Wilderness.  Shriner Lake has a little more traffic than the longer Tanglefoot Canyon into the heart of the wilderness area.
General Notes:
From the parking area, the trailhead is at the sign immediately to the north of the vehices the imposing sight of Mokelumne Peak about 7 or 8 miles to the east.  About a mile and a half into the hike is the junction for the short 1/2 mile trail to Shriner Lake.  Take this fork to the left, or you will end up heading down into Tanglefoot Canyon over the next mile with a long climb back out.
The trail to Shriner Lake

Part of the trail crew waiting at the trailhead for everyone to arrive. Work Crew at the Trailhead
There were many trees down on the trail (12 that we cleared,) including this double fall which also crossed the trail in two spots at a switchback. Trees down
Before cutting the tree away from the trail we first have to trim off all the branches to get to the trunk.  Mark is here figuring out which one to lop off first on the upper section of the double treefall. First step clipping branches
Once the top was cleared from the trail, we then had to deal with this significant block along the lower part of the switchback. Lower half
With lots of help and some freshly sharpened tools, we were able to get the branches cleared away within just about 15 minutes. Almost cleared
Fate was with us on this day as we were able to make just one cut on the upper tree, which had a diameter of more than a foot and a half. Halfway there
Just about 10 minutes later we were able to get the last cut made and the log rolled away to offer a freshly cleared trail. Both cleared
Not even 100' past the double cut we ran into a very scenic pond on the east side of the trail. Pond on the way
Just a couple hundred yards past the pond the lake came into view, a rewarding destination after a lot of work in the couple miles to this spot. Shriner Lake
The group enjoying some lunch at the lake before heading off to clear a couple more sections of trail before the end of the day. Lunch at the lake
Someone had gotten irritated with the campsite and firepit at some point, so after finishing lunch we were able to clean this up and get it back into order. Damaged Campsite
One last look from the campsite to the south and across the western end of Shriner Lake. Last look
GPS Track of the full hike.  The fork to the right was to clear a few last trees off the Tanglefoot Canyon trail. GPS Track of Hike