Outbound Collective logo

Placer County, California

Placer County, California is a top destination for outdoor adventures. The best trails and outdoor activities are plentiful here. One must-visit is the Stevens Trail, a scenic 9-mile round trip hike that offers stunning views of the American River Canyon. The trail is moderately difficult with steep inclines and rocky terrain, but the sight of the river, waterfalls, and wildflowers make it worth the effort. For those interested in rock formations, the Donner Summit Canyon trail is a great choice. It features intriguing granite formations and views of Donner Lake. If you're up for a challenge, the 6.9-mile round trip hike to Shirley Canyon is a must. You'll pass by rushing streams, waterfalls, and have a panoramic view of Squaw Valley. Remember to pack a picnic to enjoy by the lake! These are just a few of the best outdoor activities in Placer County, California.

Top Spots in and near Placer County

  • Twin Bridges, California

    Ropi Lake via Pyramid Creek

    4.7
    4.87 mi / 1581 ft gain
    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 to park in the trailhead parking lot. The hike i...
    Read more
  • Nevada City, California

    Backpack to Lower Rock Lake

    3 mi / 713 ft gain
    This adventure begins at the Lindsey Lake Campground parking lot (6,200 feet) where you leave your vehicle, takes you three miles up a trail rife with amazing photo opportunities and seasonal wildlife, and ends on the shore of Lower Rock Lake. Here you will find a dispersed camping site owned by ...
    Read more
  • Truckee, California

    Mt. Judah Loop Trail

    5.0
    5.5 mi / 1700 ft gain
    A wonderful hike in Lake Tahoe is the Mt. Judah Loop Trail that offers sweeping views of Donner Lake and the surrounding Sierra Nevada mountains on the North Shore. As a resident on the North Shore, many of my recreational activities favor this side of the Lake but there are marvelous hikes in ...
    Read more
  • Truckee, California

    Cross-Country Ski to Drifter Hut

    3.0
    9.6 mi / 980 ft gain
    Set out from the Tahoe Donner Cross Country center in Truckee at 6,650 feet elevation. Day passes range from $12 to $34, depending on time of day and skier age, and provide access to over 100 kilometers of groomed trails. Leaving the day lodge, there are multiple options for skiing up to Drifter ...
    Read more
  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Hike the Fallen Leaf Lake Trail

    5.0
    8.1 mi / 859 ft gain
    The Fallen Leaf Lake Trail is located in South Lake Tahoe, California. It is important to note that there is no trail on the east side of the lake. The trail turns into a paved road when you reach the marina after passing the campground. Additionally, lots of small trails jut out from the main tr...
    Read more
  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Winter Paddle From Camp Richardson to Kiva Beach

    Starting at Camp Rich you might get some weird looks at the start, but it is all worth it! As you look out at the lake all you see is the beautiful crystal clear water reflecting the gorgeous snow covered mountains. As you throw your board in the water you begin your paddle along the shoreline. T...
    Read more
  • Truckee, California

    Ski and Snowboard Northstar

    3.5
    Northstar California, previously known as Northstar-at-Tahoe, is located near the north shore of Lake Tahoe and is home to over 3,000 acres of skiable terrain. The resort is known for its laid back atmosphere coupled with high-end luxury accommodations, shopping and dining.The resort is home to i...
    Read more
  • Carnelian Bay, California

    Explore Carnelian Bay

    5.0
    Located on the northwest side of Lake Tahoe, Carnelian Bay is a fun place to spend the afternoon. However, there is no sand at Carnelian Bay as the ground is all large rocks. It's a great place to go swimming or SUPing in the summer, and it has a pier that you can jump off.  It is usually less cr...
    Read more
  • Twin Bridges, California

    Hiking to Ralston Peak

    4.0
    7 mi / 2375 ft gain
    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...
    Read more
  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Cliff Jumping Paradise

    4.5
    If you choose to go cliff jumping, be safe and know your limits ahead of time. Don't feel like the big jump is your only option, there are lower jumps, especially across from the beach (only about 15ft. high). Angora Lake in Lake Tahoe is a easy 1mi hike up, but well worth it at the top. It's a b...
    Read more
  • South Lake Tahoe, California

    Capture the Sunset at the Angora Ridge Fire Lookout

    The Angora Ridge Fire lookout sits above the serene Fallen Leaf Lake with incredible views of Mt. Tallac and Desolation Wilderness. You can hike, bike or drive to the lookout. This is a great spot to photograph the sunset, as the sky will reflect off both Fallen Leaf Lake and Lake Tahoe. Bring a ...
    Read more
  • Twin Bridges, California

    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, work with a guide once or twice to make sure you...
    Read more
  • Placerville, California

    Rock Climb the Cosumnes River Gorge

    5.0
    Consumes River Gorge is a good climbing spot that is relativity close to Sacramento, California. it is located just outside of Placerville, California, making it a must-stop climbing spot for any Sacramento or Eldorado county local. The climbing spot boasts granite climbing areas with over a hund...
    Read more
  • Truckee, California

    Ride the Truckee Bike Park

    5.0
    1 mi / 50 ft gain
    Truckee bike park is a great destination for all ages of bike riders. There are several different features including a pump track, dual slalom course, dirt jumps, strider track and more! This park is kid friendly but be sure to pack a helmet and pads especially for first-timers. More experienced ...
    Read more
  • Auburn, California

    Hike to the North Fork Dam of Lake Clementine

    5.0
    4 mi
    Located only roughly 40 minutes from Sacramento. This trail will allow you to view and walk under the 5th largest bridge in the US as well as enjoy the waterfall spectacle of a top releasing Dam. Once reaching Old Foresthill Road from the town of Auburn, drive over the smaller bridge spanning the...
    Read more
  • Auburn, California

    Rock Climb at the Quarry

    5.0
    2.6 mi / 800 ft gain
    Many thanks to the Climbing Resource Advocates for Greater Sacramento (CRAGS) and the Access Fund for their hard work in re-opening this location to make it climbing-legal. Where to Park:Put in "Parking lot for the Quarry Trail, California 193, Auburn, CA 95603"This is the designated parking lot ...
    Read more