Crag Lake is a popular destination in Desolation Wilderness that is reputed to hold Rainbow, Brook, and Brown Trout.
To reach Crag Lake, park at the
Meeks Bay Trailhead.
Meeks Bay is located on the southwestern shore of Lake Tahoe, California.
The trail to Crag Lake leads to a pater noster string of lakes including
Lake Genevieve, Hidden Lake, Shadow Lake, Cliff Lake and Stony Ridge Lake.
This is a very popular trail and destination to say the least. While there are parts of Desolation Wilderness where you will not
see another human for days, this is not one of them. Because this trip report is about 20 years old, I cannot remember if this took
place on a weekend or not. I think it was a weekend trip which made the overcrowding issue worse. The trail to Crag Lake starts on a
dirt road and stays flat for the first 1.6 miles. There is ample shade for the majority of this hike. There are only two steep climbs and
before you know it, you will be at Lake Genevieve. You may find yourself alone at Lake Genevieve as Crag Lake makes a much better
camping experience if you can find a good place to camp before it fills up with backpackers.
Very popular Crag Lake can better be appreciated for its' scenery rather than a great fishing
lake even though you can do well with bait. Crag Lake contains Rainbows, Brookies, and Brown trout.
The majority of the fish you will see will be Brookies in the 12-13 inch range. Fly fishing was very
slow, even trolling from the raft. This is
another lake where a float tube or rubber raft comes in really handy if your willing to pack it in.
However, if you are looking for the solitude associated with most mountain excursions, just keep moving my
friend. It might be painful to pass up such a visually pleasing lake with it's little islands and perfect
little campsites, but it is likely that you will end up camping a hair too close to your neighbor and you
may feel a bit crowded in.
Better camping areas can be found at Hidden, Cliff, or Stony Ridge Lakes. And, Stony Ridge Lake has
Lake Trout lurking near the bottom so you might tie into a monster there.