Island Lake, Tyler Lake loop

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 38.88470°N / 120.1873°W
Additional Information Route Type: Hike and scramble
Additional Information Time Required: Most of a day
Additional Information Difficulty: Class 2 or easy 3
Sign the Climber's Log


From the Wrights lake trail head on the rights side of the lake, follow the signs to Twin and Island Lakes. Go straight at the junction of the Grouse, Hemlock and Smith Lake trail. When you reach Twin Lakes cross the dam or find another way to cross if the water is too high and continue on the trail to the left of Island Lakes. If you lose the trail due to snow just keep going. You are heading towards the area with yellow colored rocks on your left. Little Pyramid is clearly visible.

Route Description

After you reach Island Lakes at some point you will decide that it looks like the right time to start ascending the slope toward the peak. As mentioned you can find a class 2 route but I prefer to climb the solid rock up to a saddle. From this point you can now look down into the Tyler lake drainage. You can go either right or left to get to the top of a flat spot. From here it is easy to just go for the top. It is no more than class 1 from here. At some point you will hit the steep gravely slope to the top. There are many use trails to follow. The top is flat and has some nice crystals if you look for them.

The loop trip back down is class 1 for the most part. Follow the drainage down to Tyler lake where a swim is delightful from the gently sloping granite shoreline.

After your swim follow the weak trail down to Gertrude Lake and then follow the Tyler lake trail down, passing the Rockbound trail junction until you see the sign for Grouse Lake trail. Take this trail back to your starting point.

Essential Gear


Miscellaneous Info

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DaveWillmott - Sep 19, 2004 4:45 pm - Hasn't voted

Route Comment

After you pass Gertrude Lake there is a point on the trail where it climbs again. Look to your right for a weak trail and look for Tyler's grave a 100 yards or so away. A white headstone can be found with the inscription "4th inf CO B" commemorating a cattleman who died in an 1882 November snow storm.

Another option occurs when you reach an overlook and you can hear and see water flowing over rocks. This is the start of the enchanted pools. Head for it down the granite slopes. Follow the creek until you can cross on a log and view more pools. After the last one climb back up to the granite plateau and follow it with the black cliffs to your left and the creek to your right. Eventually you will see ducks or trails that will take you back to the Twin Lakes Trail

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