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Fallen Leaf Lake, California

(4.3/5 based on 110+ reviews on the web)
Fallen Leaf Lake is about one mile south of the much larger Lake Tahoe, near the California-Nevada state border. It is approximately aligned north-to-south and oval in shape, measuring approximately 2.9 miles (4.6 km) on the long axis and 0.9 miles (1.4 km) on the short axis. The lake was created by at least two glaciers that traveled northward down the Glen Alpine Valley. If the glacier had continued instead of stopping, Fallen Leaf Lake would be a bay similar to nearby Emerald Bay. A terminal moraine is visible at the north end of the lake on the northeast edge.Surrounding landFallen Leaf Lake is located within the National Forest System lands managed by the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, adjacent to El Dorado County. The land surrounding the lake is privately owned, leased from the U.S. Forest Service, and part of the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit. Like some areas where the Forest Service has leased land intermingled with private land, the two land types appear in a mosaic or checkerboard pattern.AccessFallen Leaf Road is approximately 5 miles (8 km) long, and begins at State Route 89, which runs along the south shore of Lake Tahoe. The road intersects the highway approximately half a mile (800 m) west of Camp Richardson, a resort and campground on the southern shore of Lake Tahoe. The road runs generally to the south, is one lane wide and paved, and has turnouts to allow cars to pass each other. The road passes the Fallen Leaf Lake Campground, operated by the Forest Service, and then past privately owned meadows. Two miles south of Highway 89, Angora Road provides access to Angora Lookout, a Forest Service fire lookout on the east side of the lake and approximately 1,000 feet (300 m) above the lake's surface, and to Angora Lakes Resort. It also connects to US 50/SR 89 via Sawmill Road.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Seriously? I do not know how anyone can complain about this lake. Clear water, beautiful views. We chose to visit the waterfall which requires zero hiking. If you have a problem with the one lane road...  more »
  • We traveled the Oregon and California coasts, Yosemite and last stop on our trip was South Lake Tahoe. Saw MANY lakes on our trip, but this was our favorite. Rented bikes from Anderson Bike Rental and...  more »
  • We love Fallen Leaf Lake and hike and camp there on a regular basis. There are a number of reviews that talk about the narrow road along the lake and find it to be a difficult drive. While the store/c...  more »