After spending the night in Elko and after having spent the previous day hiking and running, I needed something to keep the trip entertaining on the way back. I had last hiked to Smith Lake from Angel Lake in 2015 and found it entirely enjoyable.
The action starts at the top of the Angel Lake exit off of the west exit on I-80 in Wells, Nevada. When the road is serviceable (basically summer through fall), you take it about 11 miles up and park near at the non-pay / non-camping section of Angel Lake (the first right hand parking lot). In the back of the lot is a trail that you take, open a gate and travel about 1.25 miles to get to the lake.
The trail is very easy to follow. However, it is a bit of workout, as it involves about 750 feet of climbing over the course of a mile. The views of the Wells valley are incredible.
The lake itself was tranquil and appeared like a miniature version of Angel Lake. It was quiet there and I only ran into two sets of people on the trail (and they were coming back). It seems popular with people who want to fish there and I saw plenty of fingerling fish breaking the top of the water.
Smith Lake is an ideal place for a quiet picnic and there were plenty of spots to sit back and relax.
The trail does end at the lake, but you can poke around around the lake or do a bit of trailblazing further to the west.
I should also point out that the smell was just intoxicating as well, particularly near the lake. I got the familiar "Juicy Fruit Gum" smell that I just love, despite there not being any wildflowers in bloom (this trail is awesome in July when the flowers are abundant).
Enjoy the photos: