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Hiking & Walking: California > Tahoe National Forest > Nevada City Ranger District

Quick Facts

Humbug Trail

Difficulty: More Difficult
Elevation: Varies
Length, One-way: 2.7 Miles (4.5 Kilometers)
USGS Maps: North Bloomfield 7.5' & Washington 7.5'

Satellite and Topo Map

General Description

Humbug Trail is a very difficult 2.7 mile trail. The trail begins in Malakoff Diggins State Park, generally following Humbug Creek. This trail is step and difficult, and is closed to mountain bikes. It joins the South Yuba trail just west of Humbug Creek, about 10 miles west of Poorman Creek and 4.5 miles east of the South Yuba Campground.

Directions from Washington: Travel north for less than one mile, bear left, continuing on Washington Road. After a short distance, turn left on Relief Hill Road (RD #36.) The pavement end 0.4 miles west. Continue on the gravel road crossing Poorman Creek. The trailhead is 0.1 miles beyond the creek (2 miles west of the South Yuba River bridge.)

Directions from Nevada City: Travel west on Hwy. #49 and turn right onto North Bloomfield Road. Travel north to Edwards Crossing. Drive north on e mile to the South Yuba Campground.

Seasonal Information:
Normally Open: Year-round .

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

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Filed By: Marcia Wright (Cobb, CA)
Time of Day: all day
Length of Time: 6 + hrs
Difficulty: Hard
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: We began Humbug Trail at the junction with the S. Yuba Trail and it is very steep for the first 300 feet. Then it eases up a bit with some sections being steep again. The trail is at times very narrow -I would NOT recommend mountain bikes or horses on this baby. At one spot, you have to climb up a rock ledge and work your way around to a wooden bridge. Albeit this is where you view the waterfalls- but one mistep and you are no more. There is a short spur trail to the lower falls that can be a nice picnic area with flat rock and quiet pools.
Conditions: Narrow,steep,rocky, all of the above. It is shady on 90% which helps. Great views of the waterfalls at the top. I got poison oak on both elbows so be cautious. At the end of the trail(or beginning depending on your start) We saw the Malakoff Diggins sign annoucing this trail and that dogs are NOT ALLOWED. OOPS too late. We went on to explore the Diggins area,tunnels, etc.
Water Availability: I would take extra water even though you have access to Humbug Creek about halfway.
Recommended Clothing: Light, cool clothing that gives ease of movement to hike the rough parts.
Suggested Accessories: camera/repellent

Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Hiking & Walking Humbug Trail
ICON Horseback Riding Horseback riding is available on this trail.
ICON Mountain Biking Mountain biking is available on this trail.

Related Activities
Missouri Bar Trail - The Missouri Bar Trail is a very difficult 1.4 mile trail. This trail is one mile east of North Bloomsfield and 8 miles west of Washington. The trail descends through a forest of Douglas-fir and hardwoods to the river.

South Yuba Trail - The South Yuba Trail is a very difficult 9 mile trail that provides a varying and enjoyable hike along the South Yuba River. In some areas, the route is high above the cliffs, providing spectacular views of the canyon below.

More Information

Visitor Information:

Nevada City Ranger District, 631 Coyote St , Nevada City, CA, 95959, Phone: 530-265-4531, TTY: 530-478-6118


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