Mountain biking at Lake Tahoe
is not a just a sport, it's a lifestyle! Bike paths,
dirt roads, single tracks and bike parks abound around
the lake. There are many scenic and mellow rides and
plenty of steep, rocky precipices in the mountains.
Some ski resorts have bike parks where you can buy a
lift ticket, "ride" effortlessly
to the summit and then careen your way down dusty ski
trails. There are even companies that offer guided backcountry
tours ranging from hours to days.
LAKE TAHOE BASIN
MOUNTAIN BIKING TRAILS
Many fine bike shops around the lake offer rentals, demos
and sales. These shops are great resources for expert
tips, local lore, trail maps, guide books, accessories
Keep in mind that weather conditions can change rapidly
in Tahoe. Be prepared with the proper clothing, wear sunscreen
and bring lots of water. For safety, always wear a helmet.
Be advised that bikes are not allowed in wilderness areas,
on the Pacific Crest Trail, on parts of the Tahoe Rim
Trail, nor on the self-guided nature trails at the Lake
Tahoe Visitor Center. Most other trails and logging roads
are open to mountain biking. If in doubt, call the USDA
Forest Service in South Lake Tahoe at 530-573-2600.
While riding, please help protect the Basin's high Alpine
environment, an extremely fragile resource, by staying
out of meadows and wet areas. Please do not cut switchbacks
or make new trails. National Forests belong to a variety
of users. Trails are shared by hikers, horses and mountain
bikes. Please use caution and courtesy when encountering
Enjoy your ride!
Listed in order of difficulty.
This area has several mountain biking opportunities, from
paved roads to more difficult trails. Note! Mountain bikes
are not allowed past the gate at the end of Fountain Place
Road nor the High Meadows area (private property). From
U.S. HWY 50 take Pioneer Trail one mile to Oneidas Road.
Follow Oneidas to the end and park at the staging area.
Easy / Moderate
Elevation 6320' / 8400'
2 to 10 miles
Enjoy a moderate ride with spectacular views of Fallen
Leaf Lake and Mt. Tallac. Take Fallen Leaf Lake Road from
SR 89. Park past the campground on the right. Ride along
Fallen Leaf Lake Road, take the first left, continue one-half
mile and turn right on Angora Ridge Road 12N14.
Elevation 6360' / 7440'
2 miles to Angora Lookout
4 miles to Angora Lakes
Perfect for the biker with limited time, this short steep
ride to the top of a mountain peak has great views of
Lake Tahoe. Open for public use from
9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. daily. Access is off of Lake Tahoe
Boulevard approximately two miles from the intersection
of U.S. HWY 50 and SR 89. Caution! This area is a very
popular off-highway vehicle area.
Moderate / Strenuous
Elevation 6400' / 7010'
1 to 2 miles
Rising abruptly from SR 89 for the first half-mile, this
trail levels off as it reaches Big Meadows. Trails leading
to Round, Scotts and Dardanelles lakes provide access
into Meiss Country with views of aspen-covered hills from
lodgepole-cloaked forests. Note! This trail eventually
intersects the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) where mountain
bikes are not allowed. Take SR 89 south from Meyers to
the Big Meadows parking lot. Follow the trail at the southern
end of the parking lot which leads across the highway
to the trailhead.
Moderate / Strenuous
Elevation 7280' / 8400'
Experience breathtaking scenery with exceptional views of Lake Tahoe.
Take the Rim Trail past Freel Peak, the highest peak in the basin (10,881').
Take SR 89 south from Meyers to the Big Meadows parking lot. The trail starts
at the north end of the parking area. A longer trip is possible by taking two
cars and parking one car at the Heavenly Ski Resort's Stagecoach parking lot.
The trailhead begins one-eighth mile up Stagecoach Run. Note! Mountain bikes
are not allowed on the trail from Armstrong Pass north to Fountain Place, nor
from Star Lake north to High Meadows (private property).
Moderate / Strenuous
Elevation 7280' / 9600'
Mr. Toad's Wild
A technical ride for the experienced
mountain biker, this trail drops from 9,000' to 6,800'
feet in three miles! Take the Rim Trail from the Big Meadows
parking lot two and one-half miles to Tucker Flat. Turn
left and follow the drainage of Saxon Creek. In two miles
the trail forks again. The right fork leads to Oneidas
Street off of Pioneer Trail. The left fork leads to SR
89, south of the SR 89 & U.S.
HWY 50 junction. Watch for hikers and equestrian riders
on the trail and pass with caution and courtesy.
Mr. Toad's Wild Ride
Technical / Strenuous
Elevation 6800' / 9000'
Enjoy a moderate ride along a ridgeline with scenic views
of the Lake Tahoe Basin to the west and the Carson Valley
to the east. Several spurs off the main road access peaks
with Genoa Peak being the highest (9,150'). An excellent
ten-mile loop off the main ridge is possible. Note! Mountain
bikes are not allowed on the Rim Trail, from SR 207 to
Spooner Summit. From South Lake Tahoe, take Kingsbury
Grade (SR 207) and turn left on North Benjamin Road, which
turns into Andria Drive. Continue to the end of the pavement
and park. Take Genoa Peak Road 14N32. A longer trip is
possible if you take two cars. Park the second vehicle
off of U.S. HWY 50 behind the Nevada Department of Transportation
Station, one-fourth mile south of the SR 28 and U.S. HWY
Elevation 7720' / 8680'
8 to 12 miles
to Martis Peak
The Martis Peak Road is a short five-mile climb well worth
the effort. Drive north on SR 267 from Kings Beach to
Brockway Summit. Park one-half mile past the summit on
Forest Service Road 18N02.
Brockway Summit to Martis Peak
Moderate / Strenuous
Elevation 7120' / 8660'
McKinney - Rubicon
This world-class off-highway vehicle road offers a variety
of biking opportunities from loop rides to difficult peak
climbs. From SR 89 north of Tahoma, turn west onto McKinney-Rubicon
Springs Road. Turn left on Bellevue, right on McKinney
Road, bear left onto McKinney-Rubicon Springs Road, continue
to the dirt road and park. A longer ride is possible by
taking two cars and parking one car at Blackwood Canyon.
McKinney / Rubicon Road
Moderate / Strenuous
Elevation 6400' / 7200'
6 to 15 miles
Lake / Flume Trail
Located in Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park, this popular
trail is often crowded in the summer. Challenging even
the expert rider, the trail begins east of the picnic
area near Spooner Lake. Turn left on the dirt road that
heads toward the meadow and follow a sandy road for five
miles to Marlette Lake. Turn left across the dam. With
magnificent views of Lake Tahoe, this single-track trail
lies 1,500 feet above the lake. Remember to wear your
safety helmet. Caution! Do not attempt this route if you
are afraid of heights or unfamiliar with your bike. The
trail ends at Tunnel Creek Road. To make a loop, turn
right and ride to the top of the ridge. You will reach
Twin Lakes in one-half mile. Seven-tenths of a mile past
the lake sign, turn right or continue to the next main
road and turn right. Turn right again on Forest Service
Road 504, climb the ridge and where the road forks, continue
straight to Marlette Lake. Take SR 28 to the Spooner Lake
parking lot at Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park. A parking
fee is charged. If you take two cars, be advised that
limited parking is available at Tunnel Creek Road by the
Marlette Lake & The Flume Trail
Elevation 7000' / 8300'
5 miles to Marlette Lake
23-mile loop Flume Trail
For additional information about mountain biking in the
Lake Tahoe Basin, call, write or visit:
USDA -Forest Service
Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit
35 College Drive
South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150
BACKCOUNTRY & SKI
Mountain Bike Adventures
This company has been conducting guided backcountry tours
since 1985. They focus on professional guiding, instruction
and support of small intimate groups of riders over some
of the best terrain on the planet. Altitude is everything!
Located on Lake Tahoe's beautiful West Shore, CyclePaths
offers day tours, weekenders and three and five-day fat
tire adventure camps. For those wishing to tour on their
own, the company operates a backcountry shuttle service
and sells a great selection of trail maps and guide books
for the area.
And don't worry about the hassle of bringing your own
bike. Take the opportunity to test drive state-of-the-art
bikes! CyclePaths' diverse fleet of bikes offers something
for everyone, from cruisers to tandems, front and full-suspension
rigs, kids bikes and trailers. They have a full-service
bike shop offering sales, service, repairs and accessories.
The vast wilderness of the northern Sierra offers tour
possibilities for all levels of ability and is a great
testing ground to judge your fitness and riding capabilities.
Call for information about this company's wide range of
CyclePaths Mountain Bike Adventures
1785 West Lake Blvd.
From guided mountain biking, hiking, rock climbing and
kayak tours - Tahoe Adventure Company has something for
everyone. Imagine kayaking around the shoreline under
a full moon - this creative company can make it happen!
Whether planning for a large group or just a family excursion,
let Tahoe Adventure Company assist you with your plans.
Tahoe Adventure Company
P.O. Box 8536
Tahoe City, CA 96145
Tahoe Trips and Trails offers first class active vacations
for Hiking, Biking/Mountain Biking, and Multi-Sport. Tours
are offered throughout the Lake Tahoe Basin.
Tahoe Trips and Trails
PO Box 6952
Tahoe City CA 96145
Bike Park at Kirkwood
Kirkwood is one of the few mountain bike parks in the
High Sierra. Two chairlifts provide many options with
easy access to the top of the park. A network of dirt
roads, trails and single tracks bring you back to the
bottom, with a ride that is as mellow or as thrilling
as you choose. Along the way, enjoy some of the most dazzling
mountain scenery anywhere as you wind your way through
the wildflowers exploring Kirkwood's flora and fauna.
Guided tours are available with advance reservations.
For the more adventurous mountain bike enthusiasts, stop
by the Adventure Center and pick up a map of trails accessible
from the Carson Pass and Hope Valley areas.
Lift operation hours are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Saturday,
Sunday and Holidays only. Bike and helmet rentals and
accessories are available in the Adventure Center.
Kirkwood Ski & Summer Resort
SR 88 between Silver Lake and Caples Lake
Mountain Bike Park Information:
Kirkwood Adventure Center
June through October
November through May
Visit the RECREATION menu
tab for information about other Kirkwood activities:
Bike Riding, Day Care, Hiking, Horseback Riding, Rock
Climbing, Skiing, Snowboarding, Cross-Country Skiing,
Snowshoeing, Sleigh Rides, Tennis.
Biking at Northstar-at-Tahoe
Mountain bikers can take it to the top at Northstar. The
back roads and forested trails on Mt. Pluto and Lookout
Mountain offer some of the best rides in the area with
spectacular views of Lake Tahoe and Martis Valley. We're
talking mountain biking on more than 100 miles to marked
trails where you can grunt, groan and stir up some dirt.
Northstar's Mountain Bike Park is serviced by chairlifts
equipped with racks to take you and your bike from the
Village elevation of 6,330 feet to the midmountain elevation
of 7,040 feet and higher!
Trail maps will assist mountain bikers in exploring Northstar's
back roads and forested trails with spectacular views
of Lake Tahoe and the surrounding Sierra Nevada. New single-track
trails are continually being added to the park's extensive
trail system. A wide range of skill levels is available,
from the technical training course and slalom course to
the gentle terrain of Northstar's cross-country ski trail
Bike rentals feature state-of-the-art shifting and shock
suspension and helmets are included. For trail access,
lift tickets, guided tours, lessons, bike rentals, biking
accessories and minor bike repairs, visit the Mountain
Adventure Shop located in Northstar's Village.
SR 267 at Northstar Drive
Mountain Adventure Shop
Visit the RECREATION menu
tab for information about other Northstar-at-Tahoe
activities: Climbing Wall and Ropes, Day Care, Golf, Hiking, Horseback Riding,
Skiing, Snowboarding, Cross-Country Skiing, Snowshoeing, Snowmobiling Tours,