Area: Tahoe
Distance: 9½ miles
Type: Out-and-back
Difficulty: Hard
Elevation gain: 3,500ft (from 6,400 - 9,735ft)

The jewel in the crown of mountains which ring Lake Tahoe, Mt. Tallac promises unparalleled views from its summit 9,735ft above sea level.

Our trail map takes you to the top via the most direct summer route; through lush forest, along scenic ridgelines, past small alpine lakes and across blazingly colorful wildflower strewn high-altitude meadows. Sure the 3,500ft elevation gain is greater than you might experience on most day hikes, but both the journey and the destination are worth every single thigh-burning step.

June to October is the best time to hike Tallac and although some snow may prevail at higher elevations until late July, it's unlikely to cause problems for hikers. Summer thunderstorms are common from mid afternoon, so we recommend an early start to avoid being exposed at high elevations at these times.

Remember to register for your Desolation Wilderness permit at the Mount Tallac trailhead, which is thankfully free to day hikers. Backpackers are required to arrange their paid permit in advance.

- Trailspotting Images: Mt. Tallac on Flickr