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Tahoe Rim Trail: Spooner Summit - Heavenly

Difficult
 4.6 (13)

Miles and miles of amazing alpine singletrack, simply the best trail I've ridden.


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Map Key

17.7

Miles

28.4

KM

Singletrack

8,803' 2,683 m

High

7,027' 2,142 m

Low

2,990' 911 m

Up

2,373' 723 m

Down

6%

Avg Grade (3°)

28%

Max Grade (16°)

Dogs Off-leash

E-Bikes Unknown

Features -none-

Snowbound autumn-spring.

Description

There is plenty of parking a stone's throw past Spooner Pass on Highway 50. The climbing starts immediately from the trailhead at a grade that averages about 10% (Strava Cat 3). All of the loamy pine needle switchbacks are pretty easy to negotiate. There are a couple of places to catch a view of the lake through the pine trees, so take your time and enjoy the alpine environs.

The climbing slacks off after little more than a mile and the trail rolls up and down the ridge and past Duane Bliss Peak on the left. At about 3.5 miles in, the climbing kicks up again and averages about 9% grade for 1.5 miles (Strava Cat 3). However, the climbing feels harder because you'll encounter more and more loose rock and rock outcroppings that need to be negotiated. Hang in there! when you are about ready to give up and hike it, you'll pop out of the timber and finish at a rock promontory that is one of the best views of the entire Lake! Take a long break and have a snack, you are not yet 1/3 of the way.

It is all downhill from here! At least that is what the map says, however, it is NOT as easy as you would think. You'll blaze down the next 2 miles on super fun singletrack, in and out, and around open pine forest to the Junction with Sierra Canyon Trail, which is just past Genoa Peak.

From here, the riding gets progressively tougher with each passing mile. Don't get me wrong, it is still super fun! This trail just never lets up. I was constantly challenged with every possible obstacle. Up, down around and through, up and over; drops, steps, tight corners. This trail has it all. I felt like a kid putting every skill to use. There are not many places that give you a rest or even let you roll downhill for a spell. I felt like I had just done two hours of calisthenics, I think my arms were more tired than my legs.

As the trail drops down to Kingsbury grade, you'll encounter more and more trail intersections. For this ride, stay on the T.R.T. (Tahoe Rim Trail) which is clearly marked with blue & white triangle logo. Eventually, you'll hear the highway and pop-out on the Kingsbury grade on road 207. The T.R.T. continues across the road and starts climbing again. This portion of the trail climbs past an intersection with the Van Sickle Trail before terminating at the next portion of the trail: Tahoe Rim Trail - Heavenly Mountain to Big Meadow.

Contacts

Shared By:

Lance Buck

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 13 votes

#2

in Carson City

#658

Overall
  4.6 from 13 votes
5 Star
62%
4 Star
38%
3 Star
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2 Star
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1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#2

in Carson City

#10

in Nevada

#658

Overall
182 Views Last Month
6,568 Since Jul 14, 2015
Difficult

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Photos

Sunrise over Nevada.
Jul 14, 2015 near Indian…, NV
Miles of buff singletrack!
Jul 14, 2015 near Indian…, NV
At "The Bench," did you pack a beer?
Sep 1, 2015 near Kingsbury, NV
Cool, my bike matches the rocks.
Jul 14, 2015 near Kingsbury, NV
Short climbing section on the Tahoe Rim Trail.
Aug 3, 2017 near Kingsbury, NV
Tahoe Rim Trail between Kingsbury Grade Rd and Castle Rock
Jul 28, 2016 near Kingsbury, NV

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Check-Ins

Sep 22, 2019
Mark 4ster
Great ride. Elevation was a killer as I am from socal. Can't wait to ride again. 15.7mi — 3h 00m
Sep 13, 2019
Mark Slovak
Sep 24, 2017
Leah Brenner
Epic adventure
Sep 24, 2017
Cornelius Jefferson
Sep 9, 2017
Taylor Andersen
Aug 5, 2017
Brian Lopiccolo
Thin air
Jun 20, 2017
Jim Ridge
Great start
Apr 22, 2016
Zbird Steiner
Phenomenal, on a titanium hardtail