Hike Mount Tallac

South Lake Tahoe, California

4.9/5
based on 11 reviews

Details

Distance

9.5 miles

Elevation Gain

3255 ft

Route Type

Out-and-Back

Description

Added by John Smith

One of the more scenic and challenging hikes in the South Tahoe area with incredible views of the Desolation Wilderness and Lake Tahoe itself. Shorter but more intense than the Glen Alpine Trail/ Gilmore Lake. Tallac/ Rubicon is probably one of the best day hikes you can do.

The classic 9½ mile out-and-back day hike to Mount Tallac begins at the trailhead on the southwestern side of Lake Tahoe, between Emerald Bay and Camp Richardson. When driving to the trailhead, make a turn inland at Mt. Tallac Road and follow the well-signed route to the reasonably sized parking lot. Be sure to register your day hike in the Desolation Wilderness area. Free permits are available at the trail sign, which must be filled out in full before proceeding on the trail. The route begins through light forest before heading up to a ridgeline which follows alongside the shores of Fallen Leaf Lake and provides some great views.

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Features

Photography
Hiking
Scenic

Hike Mount Tallac Reviews

I've done this hike twice now and still love it. It is pretty challenging but never gets old. Nice mellow trail past Fallen Leaf then steep up the switch backs to the first view of desolation wilderness! After that you'll have a few false peaks until you scramble a tiny bit up to the real one! Then you get a gorgeous view of fallen leaf and all of Lake Tahoe. Very fun day hike!

Beautiful hike with a lot of variety in terrain and scenery. A definite highlight in the South Lake Tahoe area. However, pay close attention to signs and do your homework ahead of time. As you approach the last couple miles the signage and path seem to disappear. Depending on what route you take there's some pretty steep scrambling and the route to the summit isn't initially clear once you reach the top of the scrambling. Completely worth the confusion though, and the view is accessible even before you get to the peak.

Definitely one of the best hikes in the Tahoe Basin. You get sweeping views of both Tahoe and Desolation Wilderness. This is a very popular hike, but that has never stopped me from doing. In my opinion, one of the best ways to do this hike is to get there for sunrise. You have to leave at about 3AM, but it is totally worth it.

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Nearby

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Swim at Fallen Leaf Lake

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Hike the Fallen Leaf Lake Trail