Washoe Meadows State Park (north)

Copyright © 2016 by Jared Manninen

Washoe Meadows State Park is open year-round. Hike and mountain bike in the park during the warmer months and snowshoe and cross-country ski in the snowy ones. Angora Creek and the Upper Truckee River run through Washoe Meadows, so much of the park’s terrain is moist and home to many varieties of wildflowers throughout the spring and summer. The park offers sweeping views of Freel Peak, Mount Tallac, Angora Peak, and nearby Twin Peaks.

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View of Mount Tallac from Washoe Meadows State Park (north). Photo taken by Jared Manninen on May 16, 2016.

Trail Data (approximations):

  • Total Mileage: 3 miles
  • Total Elevation Gain: 100 feet
  • Highest Point: 6,388 feet
  • Trail: Hard-packed sand, meadow (portions submerged in wet months)

Parking:

Park at the Forest Service gate located on Lake Tahoe Blvd 2.5 miles west of the “Y” intersection of Highways 50 & 89. The gate is set back from the road in some trees just beyond Tahoe Mountain Rd and near the Lake Valley Fire District Station. An optional entry point to the park is on Mountain Meadow Dr (see map). To avoid submerged trails during wet months, use this access point and travel south.

Travel:

The trail crosses wooden bridges and travels along hard-packed sand walkways, often lined by granite rocks. Although this trip arbitrarily turns around at the derelict wooden structure located 1.5 miles from the trailhead (set back from the meadow in the trees), there are more miles for hiking to the south.

Copyright © 2017 Jared Manninen

View of Mount Tallac from Washoe Meadows State Park (north) taken by Jared Manninen on February 27, 2017.

Considerations:

  • Parking at the gate is OK, but don’t block the gate
  • Sections of the trail in the northern portion of Washoe Meadows State Park can be submerged in water during wet months
  • Dogs are not allowed in the park
  • Adhere to all Leave No Trace principles
  • There are few trail signs and markers on public lands in the Tahoe region, so unless there are tracks to follow, the correct route may be difficult to identify–when in doubt, turn back
  • Be prepared for inclement weather and carry plenty of warm clothes, food, and water
  • Leave an itinerary of your plans with someone who will call emergency services if you do not return by your prescribed time
Copyright © 2016 by Jared Manninen

Click on the above map to enlarge it for printing and better viewing. This map is only for reference. Always carry a traditional topographic map and compass when traveling in the backcountry.

Below is a Google Map to assist you in finding the parking area for accessing Washoe Meadows State Park. Remember, the hike featured on this post begins on the northern end of the park.