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A route paralleling Hwy-89, for dirt commuters to Truckee from Sagehen Creek Field Station or the Prosser communities.

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6,419' 1,957 m


5,750' 1,753 m


653' 199 m


1,154' 352 m



Avg Grade (1°)


Max Grade (9°)

Dogs Unknown

E-Bikes Unknown

The singletrack sections typically lose the last of their snow by mid-May. Don't trench the trail by riding it wet!


From time to time, you see bicyclists grinding along CA Hwy-89 north of I-80. Poor suckers! It's a terrible ride: plenty of traffic and sun, no shoulders, hay and log trucks, stinky roadkill, and tough little climbs over and over and over again. Those bikers really should be riding this route instead, but it would be hard to figure it out by yourself, since it links together stretches of dirt road, fisherman's trail, singletrack, paved bike path, and some quiet road segments.

Not too demanding for a mountain bike, but way too much for a road bike, you could probably make it work with a gravel or cross bike if you have a sense of humor (which is kind of required for that, anyway).

Plenty of people live along this stretch of highway, and this route provides a slick way to bicycle commute to town. If you are in Prosser Village it won't be a big ride, but if you are coming from Sagehen you'd better be reasonably strong to make it to town and back again.

Need to Know

Ride either direction and jump in wherever you like, but this map assumes you are starting at the field station. It's a downhill trend to town, but you'll pay for that on the return!


Starting at the Sagehen front gate, immediately turn right and follow the OHV road. Enjoy the long downhill! Pass through a (usually) open gate, and turn right into a rough forest work camp. In a couple hundred meters, go left and over a meter-high dirt water-bar onto a developing singletrack that should immediately become more obvious. Follow it back to Hwy-89, then use the highway bridge to cross over Prosser Creek. On the other shore, cross the road and duck behind the end of the guardrail; backtrack a bit on the Emigrant Trail singletrack that appears and follow it to Donner Camp, ignoring the various dirt and paved roads you cross along the way.

Cross the Donner Camp parking lot and pick up the trail again, bypassing the historic site interpretive trail. After noodling along beside the highway for a bit, you'll cross Alder Creek. There's a new plank bridge unless it's been taken by a flood, in which case it might be ad hoc and sportier. Continue on the main trail as it bends left to contour around the base of the steep hillside. Ignore the spurs that climb the hill on your right. Ignore the singletracks that continue left as you bend around right and join into a dirt road. Go left on the dirt road and climb up, contouring around the subdivision on the right and ignoring the left spurs. Follow the dirt road until it terminates at a paved cul-de-sac. Follow the paved road, sneak around the privacy gate, and turn left at the T. At the next T, go left again, but hop on the parallel bike path and follow it when it bends right. Curve around the golf course and bear left when you see you can cross under I-80.

On the other side of the freeway, immediately go right on a dirt trail. Follow it past a right spur. Turn at the second left and climb quickly up into the Oly Heights subdivision past a gate. Turn right and follow the road downhill left then right until you reach Glenshire Drive. Go right, toward town, and climb a short way up to the top of the hill where the guardrail on the other side breaks. Cross the road and slip through the gap to gain a parallel singletrack dropping to the railroad track. Cross the tracks and head for the pedestrian bridge that crosses the river.

Once across, go right on the bike path to head directly to town or left as mapped to reach Sierra Meadows subdivision, the airport, or a couple of nice lunch options.

Note: for a quicker way to Old Town Truckee, go right at the second T intersection and follow the paved bike path across Hwy-89 and into town through the Pioneer Commerce Center.

Shared By:

F Felix

Trail Ratings

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  4.0 from 2 votes
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in California


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1,981 Since Aug 21, 2019
Intermediate Intermediate




Current Trail Conditions

All Clear 54 days ago
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Jun 12, 2020
Nate Sonnenthal

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