Twin Bridges, California

Hiking to Ralston Peak

7 Miles Total - 2375 ft gain - Out-and-Back Trail

Originally added by Xavier Salgado

Distance: 7.0 miles out and back. Duration: A few hours or overnight camping. Elevation gain: 2,735ft (from 6,500 - 9,235ft). Amazing views. Permit required.

Starting at the lower lot it's less than a mile to access the trail. The hike starts off in shade through a lot of red fir forest and continues at a steady upward route. Approximately 45 mins into the hike you'll come across a sign that says you are entering desolation wilderness. The forest will gradually recede as the trail takes you to higher elevation with views of Lovers Leap and Sierra-at-Tahoe Ski Resort. Once you have reached approximately two thirds of the way up, the evergreens clear up to rocky terrain and grasses. The trail becomes less visible at this point, but you should be able to see the summit of the mountain to keep you in route ( the trail is even less visible during the winter months where snow tends to blanket the trails towards higher elevation ).

The views from atop the summit of Mt. Ralston are astonishing and definitely worth the effort of the steep hike. Desolation Wilderness, Echo lake, Mount Tallac, and Lake Tahoe are all within eyesight. Make sure to prepare for this hike with the precaution of weather variables. Temperatures can switch substantially do to the elevation change. Permits are free for daily use but should be obtained before heading into Desolation Wilderness.

Once you are done, hop over to the Strawberry Lodge (Kyburz CA.) for a Tuscan Chicken sandwich (Grilled chicken with roasted Red Pepper, bacon, Romaine lettuce, and pesto aioli) and some house cut french fries or chips.

For the location of this hike google these coordinates: 38.803861,-120.117389

Read More

Tags

Camping
Photography
Backpacking
Hiking
Dog Friendly
Food Nearby
Forest
Groups
Scenic
Wildlife

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Great views and a nice workout

I've never done this in the winter, but it's on my to-do list for backcountry ski trips. However, it makes for a great summer hike to get in some good elevation gain. The views from the top let you see right into the heart of Desolation Wilderness, you can see south all the way to Ebbet's Pass and you can see parts of Lake Tahoe and Fallen Leaf Lake. Overall a great peak to summit in the Tahoe area.

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

Stay Nearby

Kyburz, California

Wrights Lake

Overview Wrights Lake Campground is situated in the timber belt, close to the lake shore, looking up at the majestic rocky peaks of the Sierra Nevadas and Desolation Wilderness. The area is well-kn...

Kyburz, California

Wrights Lake Equestrian Campground

Overview The Wrights Lake Equestrian Campground is available to visitors travelling with equestrian or packstock animals. The campground is situated near the Wrights Lake Campground in a grassy, o...

South Lake Tahoe, California

Outsite Heavenly

Coliving In Lake Tahoe, California Our mountain lodge features over 4,100 square feet of living/working space. The luxury home is located on the side of Tahoe Mountain in the popular Angora Heights...

From $63/night

Silver Fork Road

Harvey West Cabin

Overview The Harvey West Cabin is located on the Silver Fork of the American River. The cabin is easily access from Silver Fork Road. The cabin has beds for 12 and can accommodate an additional e...

Nearby Adventures

  • Climb Knapsack Crack & Deception at Lover's Leap

    If you're just getting into outdoor climbing, it can be pretty daunting. There are so many amazing routes and so much to be worried about. Plus, you need a partner you trust to put the work in with you. To start, read a book or two, and if you can...

  • Climbing Lover's Leap...

    The myriad rock features offer many different climbing options for each crux which can help or confuse. Sometimes it is easier to do an improbable face move to the side of a major feature. Some 5.8 moves, the crux on Haystack for example feel like...

  • Backpack to Ropi Lake

    The trailhead to begin this hike is located at: 38.8117 N, 120.1237 W. From Hwy 50 just south of Lake Tahoe, take Hwy 50 southwest for almost 11 miles, where you'll turn into the parking lot after crossing Pyramid Creek. There is a $5 day-use fee...

    5.6 miles 1900 ft gain

  • Hike Horsetail Falls

    Great views are waiting for you at the top of Horsetail Falls. Pyramid Creek flows down the steep, glacier carved granite faces of Desolation Wilderness to create this awesome waterfall that is estimated to be about 800 feet tall. You will follow ...

    2.8 miles 700 ft gain