Walk the Rainbow Trail

Rate this Adventure Lake Tahoe Taylor Creek Visitor Center

Added by Annelise Del Rio

Easy walks through diverse forest habitat and to the Lake Tahoe beach. See beautiful fall foliage, as well as salmon, trout, and waterfowl.

The Taylor Creek Visitor Center, located about 3 miles down HWY 89, is a good place to start when exploring Lake Tahoe. Take the Lake of the Sky Trail 3/4 of a mile to the shore of Lake Tahoe. Along the way you will pass through a pine forest, a marsh, and groves of colorful aspen on your way to the beach at the shoreline. There are also good views of Mt Tallac when it's not too foggy. The beach is nice and sandy so many people bring towels and chairs to hang out by the lake.

Starting back at the visitor center, take the Rainbow Trail and walk along the 1/2 mile paved path through the forest with many aspens and evergreen trees. There is a stream with colorful bushes on the banks. Be sure to walk to the stream and look for bright red Kokanee salmon that are spawning in the fall. For a better look at the salmon and trout, there is a stream profile chamber where you can get an underwater view of the fish.

This is an especially scenic place to visit in the fall when the trees and bushes along the shore and in the marsh have their most colorful foliage. Autumn is also the best time to see the salmon. Try to visit during early to mid October for the best foliage. Stop by the visitor center for maps, information, or souvenirs.

Pack List

  • Dress for the weather
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Camera
  • Snacks
  • Beach towels or chairs (if you'd like to spend time by the shore)
Read More

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

Share

Activities:

Hiking

Skill Level:

Beginner

Season:

Spring, Summer, Autumn

Trail Type:

Loop

Distance:

1 Miles

Features:

Bathrooms
Beach
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Lake
Picnic Area

Are we missing something?

Suggest an edit

How to Get There

Have you done this adventure? Have something to add? You could be the first to leave a review!

Added by Annelise Del Rio

An Ohio native now living in California and traveling everywhere in between. I'm a grad student and spend most of my free time exploring outdoors.

More Adventures Nearby

Hike to Hollow Falls

Lake Tahoe / Hollow Falls Trailhead

The first step of this fun little hike is to park at the handy parking lot located at 2488 Cherokee Rd., Oroville, CA up on Table Mountain.

Backpack Seven Lake Loop in Lassen Volcanic NP

Lake Tahoe / South Summit Lake Campground

This hike is one of my favorites for when I only have a weekend to get my nature fix.

Hike the Lam Watah Trail

Lake Tahoe / Lam Watah Trailhead

Lam Watah Trail is a 2.2 mile out and back hike, that will take you through Lam Watah meadows and ends at Nevada Beach.

Anca Apostoaei
2 Saves