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Fishing: California > Tahoe National Forest > Downieville Ranger District

Quick Facts

Third Divide Trail

Beginning Elevation: 3,480 Feet (1084.8 Meters)
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation Gain: 960 Feet (299.3 Meters)
Ending Elevation: 4,440 Feet (1384.0 Meters)
Length, Round Trip: 7 Miles (11.67 Kilometers) Second and Third Divide Trails.




Satellite and Topo Map




General Description

Third Divide Trail is a moderately difficult trail at an elevation of 3,400 feet. A few hundred yards after the beginning trailhead at Third Divide, the trail crosses Lavezzola Creek and climbs moderates for 2 miles through a beautifully wooded area until it reaches the ridge top. Another 0.2 miles brings you to the junction with the Second Divide Trail and Butcher Ranch Trails. The Second Divide Trail follows Pauley Creek down the canyon.

This area has a wide variety of birds, wildlife and flowers. Pauley Creek falls rapidly and the short spur trails leading to the creek are well worth exploring for picnicking, fishing and sightseeing.

There are several possibilities to explore in this area. Backpackers may choose to follow Second or Third Divide Trails to the junction of the Butcher Ranch and Pauley Creek Trails. The Butcher Ranch Trail offers beautiful displays of spring flowers. The scenic Pauley Creek Trail accesses Gold Valley.

Day hikers who can arrange transportation may wish to be dropped off at the Third Divide Trailhead and hike the loop to their vehicles at Second Divide.

Directions from Downieville: Travel on Upper Main Street. Approximately 0.5 miles east of the town Post Office, cross the Downie River Bridge. Continue on the dirt road 2.7 miles to the Second Divide trailhead on the right. To access the Third Divide Trail, continue another 1.5 miles to a well-defined road fork. Take the right branch, entering Empire Ranch private land, and proceed 0.2 miles to the trailhead sign on the right. Please park your vehicle well off the road and respect the rights of private property owners.

Seasonal Information:
Normally Open: April through November (NOTE: During mild Winters this trail can be accessed year round.) .



Current Conditions & Trip Reports

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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Fishing Fishing is available on these trails.
Yes
ICON Hiking & Walking Third Divide Trail
Yes
ICON Horseback Riding Horseback riding is available on these trails.
Yes
ICON Bird Identification These trails have a wide variety of birds native to this area.
Yes
ICON Wildflower Identification Many forms of wildflowers can be viewed from these trails.
Yes
ICON Mountain Biking Mountain biking is available on these trails.
Yes
ICON Motorcycle Riding Motorcycle riding is available on these trails.
Yes
ICON Picnicking Picnicking is available on these trails.
Yes
ICON Viewing Wildlife Many forms of wildlife can be viewed from these trails.
Yes



Related Activities
Butcher Ranch Trail - Butcher Ranch Trail is a difficult 4 mile trail at an elevation of 6,200 feet. This trail follows the contour of Butcher Ranch Creek for 1.5 miles to the confluence of Butcher Ranch and Pauley Creeks.

Pauley Creek Trail - Pauley Creek Trail is a difficult 3.5 mile trail at an elevation of 6,200 feet. This trail heads north toward Gold Valley. The trail along Pauley Creek is a steady climb, offering views of a series of beautiful, deep pools.

Second Divide Trail - Second Divide Trails is a moderately difficult trail at an elevation of 3,480 feet. This trail offer several possibilities to explore in this area. The Second Divide Trail follows Pauley Creek down the canyon.



More Information

Visitor Information:

Downieville Ranger District, 15924 Highway 49 , Camptonville, CA, 95922, Phone: 530-288-3231, TTY: 530-288-3656

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