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Buck Meadows, Lumsden Bridge and the Toulumne River

 4.5 (4)
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17.5 Miles 28.2 Kilometers



2,810' 856 m


-2,811' -857 m



Avg Grade (3°)


Max Grade (12°)

3,399' 1,036 m


1,425' 434 m


Shared By Tom Wilson



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An epic long distance loop ride dropping into the Tuolumne Canyon with great views of the river.

Tom Wilson

Dogs Unknown

Features -none-

Closed to motor vehicles during winter.


This ride will bring you along the Tuolumne Canyon Ridge, which will give you great views into Yosemite. Then it will drop you into the Tuolumne Canyon right next to the Tuolumne River. There's a great downhill section behind Buck Meadows with a relatively low grade 5 mile uphill climb out. You'll get amazing views into an awesome area that many people don't get to see.

Need to Know

Watch out for cars on Lumsden road during the summer. Poison oak is in the area but trails are wide enough for you to avoid it easily. The uphill can be strenuous at the top. Bring lots of water.


Start at the Stanislaus US Forest Service parking lot. You can either go down Lumsden road and back up, or you can make it into a loop. Ride by the Pines campground sign and then take your first left onto dirt forest service roads off of Highway 120. This forest service dirt road will bring you along the ridge of the Tuolumne canyon which will give you great views into Yosemite!

Continue on the forest service road until you get to the back of the Buck Meadows Restaurant (stop for a beer and lunch if you're hungry :)) From here, you'll start heading down into the canyon on semi-rocky doubletrack trails. The downhill lasts for 3-4 miles and will put you at the bottom of the canyon next to the river and the Lumsden campground.

You can ride another 3 miles to get to the Lumsden bridge and see a great view of the waterfall (shown on this gpx track) or you can head up the 5 mile Lumsden road to get back to the Lumsden trailhead. From here, get back on Feretti road for 20 feet and take the forest service dirt road that will bring you back to the US Forest Service Office. You'll be required to ride on Highway 120 for a quarter mile.

History & Background

Lumsden road is a forest service road that is heavily used by rafting guide companies around the Groveland, CA area. It provides access to put into the Tuolumne river. There is camping down at the bottom of the canyon that is right next to the river.


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Your Check-Ins


Aug 27, 2018
Mike Kalua
Park at Ferretti Road and take 120 Bypass to cut out Pines Campground trails. It's passable, but easy to get lost, poor condition and HAB at points. — 3h 00m
Oct 1, 2016
david coe
Monster climb out. Great swimming hole at the end

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Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 4 votes


in Buck Meadows


  4.5 from 4 votes
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Chad Lawver
Yosemite Village, CA
Chad Lawver   Yosemite Village, CA
Great thanks Tom! I look forward to riding it here soon. Every hit up the trails around Bass Lake? I'm surprised to see those aren't on here yet. Jul 15, 2013
Dan Oakland
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA
Dan Oakland   Rancho Santa Margarita, CA
When heading down from Buck Meadows, be sure to stay on the Fireroad down and not cross the wash-out at about 5.7 miles. What looks like a trail there would be unsafe for hiking even without a bike in tow. Nov 13, 2015
Mike Kalua
Merced, CA
Mike Kalua   Merced, CA
One of my favorite rides in the area! Fun, challenging (endurance-wise), and full of beauty. I like to park at the Lumsden Road Trailhead off of Ferretti Rd and take the 120 bypass trails to the descent. The black diamond DH from the Pines Campground is fun, but requires a lot of effort to trudge through overgrowth and is being reclaimed by the forest for much of it. I usually avoid it. Here's a video from the Buck Meadows Trail down to the River! Aug 31, 2018

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