Explore the best trails near South Lake Tahoe with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
dogs on leash
In the winter you must park at the snow park and hike in. This added 1.2 miles each direction.
Heavy avalanche control bombing was going on and the Lake was frozen over. It was very cool to see frozen!
We decided not to brave the PCT trail due to the fresh snow and possible risk of avalanche.
Pretty moderate trail. The beginning and the end have some climbs but a beautiful scenery the entire trail. We went later in the summer, but I've been told that Spring time is the best with all the spring flowers. The lake itself is more of a "mushy" lake so you might get a little muddy if you go in, but there's lots of camping spots around the lake if you walk a little. We went during a non burning month, but one of our neighbors felt like they didn't have to follow the rules so our camp was encompassed in smoke for the night. There's a beautiful view looking down to Tahoe.
We intended to do the 12 mile Burnside Lake rd but showed up late then got stuck in the snow for an hour. We decided to hike Hope Valley. Upon arrival I was disappointed that this was a groomed trail. Who wants to snowshoe on hard pack? Not me. Anyway, we headed up the road and split off to the Hope Valley trail. Lucky for us no one had cut the trail yet so we had fresh powder most of the way.
We hit our GPS destination and was a little confused about the why the trail ended where it did. No Valley to be seen from the end point.
Some stream crossings you need to watch out for. It was a good day with very few people. Low traffic all though they have shoe and ski available for rent at the parking area.
Breathtaking views, worth the uphill battle! At the top you can see lakes left and right. The hike was strenuous, but there were plenty of places to rest and take a lunch break. We started our hike later in the day (not on purpose) around noon, and got back to the car right as the sunset. I would suggest starting earlier in the day so you're not running downhill to catch the rest of daylight!