Tahoe Arts and Mountain Culture
Tahoe Arts and Mountain Culture

Tahoe Rim Trail Snowshoe Hikes

Posted on February 20, 2016
Filed Under Mountaineering

The Tahoe Rim Trail Association is offering free guided snowshoe treks along the famous trail that winds 165 miles around Lake Tahoe. From enchanting forests to mesmerizing vistas and towering peaks, it’s no wonder everyone loves this trail.  These snowshoe hikes are great for all abilities (shorter hikes are appropriate for kids). Discover this fun and easy way to exercise and socialize during the winter months in Lake Tahoe.

NOTE: Some of the hikes listed are for members only. So please contact the TRT if you’re interested in joining, or just go hike on your own in Tahoe because that’s free.

January 9 – Snowshoe Fun to Lower Echo Lake

(4  miles; Moderate) This will be a leisurely snowshoe from the parking lot to Lower Echo Lake (however, it could be more challenging if snow levels are deep). We will lunch at the old lodge, so please remember to bring lunch and snacks. Our destination provides great photo opportunities of Lower Echo Lake and the surrounding mountains of glacial moraine carved out millennia ago. Meeting Spot/Time: Lower Echo Lake, 10:00am  Although the hike is FREE, participants will be expected to purchase a $5 parking permit. More information upon registration.

January 23 – Snowshoe to Meiss Lake, 8am to 4pm

(7.5 miles; difficult) On this longer, challenging hike, snowshoers will be treated to the impressive scenery of the surrounding mountainsides and forests. We will travel through the gentle basin of the Upper Truckee River Meadows to Meiss Lake, which is mostly level. The most challenging part of our travels will be on the return trip, where we will climb a significant slope before descending to our starting point. Please be sure that you can travel up to 8 miles on snowshoe with a 10 – 15 lb day pack before registering for this hike. Although the hike is FREE, participants will be expected to purchase a $5 parking permit. More information upon registration. Meeting Spot/Time: Carson Pass North Trailhead, 8am – 3pm

Jan. 23- Full Moon Snowshoe Trek to Brockway Vista – 4 pm to 6:30 pm

The 3-mile snowshoe trek will begin at the Brockway Summit East Trailhead (7,000′ elevation) just near sunset. Participants will be lead by TRTA guides from the trailhead through thick forest offering occassional views of Tahoe as we ascend 300′ to a scenic viewpoint to watch the full moon rise. At the viewpoint participants will be offered a 360 degree view of Lake Tahoe and the Sierra crest including Castle Peak and Sierra Buttes in the distance.

February 13 – Sweetheart Sunset Snowshoe – TRTA Members Only

(2 miles; Moderate) Invite your sweetheart on this short and scenic hike taking you to viewpoints within the Tahoe Meadows and along the Tahoe Basin ridgeline. There will be plenty of great photo opportunities to capture Lake Tahoe and the distant mountains of Mt. Rose Wilderness along the way and at the top. Please be sure to bring a camera! We will enjoy some wine and other goodies before ending a memorable Valentine’s Day back at the trailhead. Meeting Spot/Time: Tahoe Meadows South, 4pm to 6:30pm

March 5  – Martis Peak Snowshoe Trek

(8 miles; Difficult) This challenging hike climbs significantly for the first 4 miles, gaining over 1000 feet in elevation before topping out at the Martis Peak Lookout. The rewards are spectacular views of Truckee and Donner Pass, the Sierra Buttes and Lake Tahoe to the south. You will enjoy lunch at the top, so don’t forget to bring one! Please be certain that you can hike 8 miles in snowshoes, with significant elevation gain, before attempting this hike.  Meeting Spot/Time: Martis Peak Road, 9:30am to 4pm

The Tahoe Rim Trail is one of the world’s premier trails. It passes through two states (California and Nevada), six counties, one state park, three National Forests, and three Wilderness areas. This spectacular trail is 165 miles of single-track multiuse trail, winding peak to peak around Lake Tahoe. It is a trail that offers something for everyone! Hiking and horseback riding are allowed on all portions of the trail, while mountain biking is allowed on the trail with the exception of the wilderness areas, the section that is in the Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park, and on the sections of trail that overlap with the Pacific Crest Trail.

Gear to Bring

1. Snowshoes
2. Snow Boots (recommend gators to keep snow out of boots)
3. Trekking poles with snow basket (ski poles are fine)
4. Water – 2 quarts minimum per person
5. Lunch and snacks
6. Warm clothes (synthetics blends, such as fleece, polypropylene, & wool. Cotton and jeans are not acceptable clothes for the backcountry in winter, this includes cotton socks!) Water and wind resistant pants and jacket are essential.
7. Gloves
8. Ski hat
9. Lip balm
10. Sunscreen, SPF 30 or greater
11. Sunglasses and/or goggles for blowing snow
12. Map and compass (if you have them)

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