Escape the crowds and enjoy remote nature on these Tahoe trails.

By Paul Andrew

Emerald Bay - Tahoe Trails
Emerald Bay – Tahoe Trails (Jeramie Lu Photography)


Whether you are adventuring in the Lake Tahoe area or you’re a local, one advantage to this region is the ability to escape crowds, if you know where to go on these extraordinary Tahoe trails.

Whether biking, hiking, or paddleboarding, there are opportunities to find that secluded spot to enjoy nature, breathe the crisp mountain air, and get lost in your thoughts. In these crazy, fast-paced times, it is so valuable to find much-needed serenity whenever possible.

With the popularity of the High Sierras has achieved in recent years, seclusion gets harder and harder to find. Especially during busy weekends, some spots can resemble the traffic on an L.A. freeway.

Taking a hike in a pine forest is a majestic experience. For advanced hikers, the Tahoe Rim Trail provides spectacular scenery, a variety of terrain, and challenging trails.

Tahoe Rim Trail - Tahoe Trails
Tahoe Rim Trail – Tahoe Trails (Brian Walker Photography)

With 162 total miles surrounding Lake Tahoe, there are many different access points to the trail, depending on the distance one wants to travel.

Taking a hike in a pine forest is a majestic experience.

For those who don’t want anything as daunting, several lower elevation trails are easy to manage. A wooded path just north of Zephyr Cove Resort, with spectacular views of the shoreline and secluded beaches, meanders through the woods, over a creek to the community of Skyland a few miles away.

At the return of your walk, enjoy a meal at the Zephyr Cove Restaurant, or take a scenic cruise to Emerald Bay on the M.S. Dixie.

Also on the Nevada side of South Shore is a paved multi-use hiking and biking trail between Kingsbury Grade off Cottonwood Drive, meandering through the trees to Round Hill Shopping Center.

Crossing the highway down Elks Point Road, the path continues to Round Hill Pines, where one can sample a cocktail at their beach bar, or rent any of a variety of watercraft

Tahoe Pyramid Trail, Fleish Bridge - Tahoe Trails
Tahoe Pyramid Trail, Fleish Bridge – Tahoe Trails

There’s a waterfall in Carson City? When visiting the historic Nevada State capital, a beautiful spot to take a hike is the Kings Canyon Waterfall.

This 25 foot, cascading waterfall is only about five minutes west of downtown and accessible off a 1.9-mile loop trail, with additional hiking options in the vicinity.

The Tahoe Pyramid Trail, also enjoyed by hikers and bikers, when completed will extend 113 miles along the Truckee River from Pyramid Lake, through Reno, to Tahoe City.

Much of the trail is paved, with other portions dirt roads only. The elevation gain for the entire trail is over 2,000 feet. Though still a “work in progress,” much of this unique trail can currently be enjoyed.

For paddleboarders, there is nothing in the world that matches the scenic beauty and serenity of the 72 mile Lake Tahoe Water Trail.

This breathtaking journey, which circumnavigates the lake, provides numerous launch and landing sites, and is divided into seven-day trip segments.

Whether your desire is hiking, biking, paddle boarding, or lying on the beach, there are unlimited opportunities to “get away from it all,” and enjoy the seclusion and peace that the High Sierra has to offer.

Exploring the numerous trails, beaches and wooded areas can provide peace of mind and tranquility.

All we ask is that those enjoying our beautiful area “leave no trace,” and respect this unique area that we have the honor to experience.

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Disclaimer: Getaway Reno/Tahoe supports social distancing and safe practices promoting the health of our community. Due to the COVID-19 health crisis, digital and print content is updated to the best of our knowledge. Please keep in mind, many photos featured in our publication and online platform were taken before the pandemic and may not reflect current conditions. As you navigate your Reno/Tahoe adventure, be sure to visit the corresponding event URL or business page to check cancellations, closings, or postponements. Stay safe, stay healthy. Thank you.