Lake Tahoe Waterfall Hikes – Upper Eagle Falls

Travel over the waterfall and through the woods, all the way to Eagle Lake if you’re adventurous.


Upper Eagle Falls (height – approximately 20ft.) is a short hike up from the roadside at the Eagle Falls picnic area. It is congested and very difficult to get a parking spot here during the day, so it is recommended to arrive early. At this location, you can also cross the road and you’ll be right on top of Lower Eagle Falls, Vikingsholm and Emerald Bay. Upper Eagle Falls is much smaller than the lower falls, but is still nice to see when you visit Lake Tahoe. The view over Lake Tahoe is truly picturesque.

Upper Eagle Falls is the first noteworthy feature on your hike into the Desolation Wilderness. The trail head begins from the parking lot and restrooms. You will need a wilderness permit if you are going past the falls. Eagle Lake is about 30 minutes in and following Eagle Lake, you can hike to the three Velmas, Dicks, and Fontanillis Lakes.

Eagle Lake
Eagle Lake

Directions: Along Hwy #89, 8.5 miles northwest of the Hwy #50 junction, at South Lake Tahoe. Park at the Eagle Falls picnic area on top of Emerald Bay. There is a parking fee.

eagle falls mp

Location: Highway 89, South Lake Tahoe, CA

Height: -20ft.

Access: people and leashed animals

Distance: 0.4 miles’ round trip

Elevation: 6650 ft.

Season; Apr-Jul

Difficulty: Easy

Lat/Long: 38.94999N; 120.11618W

See also: Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority