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Home - Hiking - Mount Tallac

Mount Tallac

The Vitals

Elevation - 9,735', Rock - Granite and metamorphised sedimentary
- Winter - Park off Highway 89 near Spring Creek Tract Road. This is also a  chain up area so leave room for cars to chain up or risk a ticket. There are numerous summer options.

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Locals Tips

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Recommended Gear

Climbing Skins
GPS Device
Backcountry Touring Pack
Hydration Pack

Blue Granite Climbing Gym

Tallac is the tallest mountain rising from the shore of Lake Tahoe and is one of the most popular day hikes in the basin. The Spring Creek Trailhead primarily serves as a winter entrance, allowing access via a thoroughfare up the NE Ridge (in the summer, there is no maintained trail here).
The views from the top are amazing. Below you are Gilmore Lake, Fallen Leaf Lake, Cascade Lake, Emerald Bay, Lake Aloha, Lake of the Woods, and of course the Big Blue herself.

Tallac in the Winter (or spring)
In the winter Tallac is one of the finest backcountry ski tours in the Tahoe area. There are a number of ways both up and down and it is located right off Highway 89. The skin up the NE Ridge is a steady incline which gives you a break by getting easier towards the top. The ski takes you back to the car with no uphill or skating necessary. The entire tour comprises of about 3,100 feet of vertical but can be done in less than four hours. Access is best through the Spring Creek Road which is marked well off of Hwy 89 (the road is gated and you must not block the gate by parking there).

Fallen Leaf Lake Skinning up Mount Tallac Skinning up Tallac Skiing Mt. Tallac
Mount Tallac and Lake Tahoe Skier, dog, and Fallen Leaf Lake. Ski lines on Mount Tallac Looking across at Angora Peak in the foreground, Echo Peak in the Middle, and Moon Couloir off Round Top in the background
Skier and dog on Tallac Skier on Tallac with Tahoe in the background Snowboarder dropping down to the Cross Skier dropping into the Cross of Mount Tallac
Skier dropping into the Cross of Mount Tallac Skier exiting the Cross of Mount Tallac Rider slashes under the Cross of Mount Tallac Skier on Tallac
Skier on Tallac Skier on Tallac Skier and dog on Mount Tallac Traditional winter route up Tallac

Tallac in the Summer (or fall)
There are many different ways to access Mount Tallac during the summer. The trail from the Glen Alpine Trailhead takes you up the western flank past Gilmore Lake or there is a long traverse that starts behind the bathrooms above the parking area. While the peak lies within Desolation Wilderness, it is anything but desolate. You're likely to see many people no matter what time of year you make the trip. Personally, I prefer the trip past Gilmore Lake as it presents more opportunities for swimming, fishing, etc. Keep in mind thoiugh the flats around Gilmore Lake can be very buggy. The actual Mt. Tallac trailhead takes one past Floating Island Lake and Cathedral Lake. To access the trailhead turn off Highway 89 opposite Baldwin Beach about 4 miles from the 'Y'. Trails also start from both sides of Fallen Leaf Lake (actually they are both on the west side). All the trails meet for the final ascent to the summit.

Floating Island Lake Cathedral Lake and Mount Tallac hiking Tallac hiking Mt. Tallac
Mount Tallac trail hiking Wildflowers on Mount Tallac Views from Mount tallac
School children on Tallac Tallac views Lake Tahoe towel on Mount Tallac Handstand on the summit of Tallac

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