Trips & Pictures Tahoe Rim Trail, February 2004

Snowshoeing on the Tahoe Rim Trail, Big Meadows -> Round Lake

I found this route while flipping through a tahoe snowsohe trails book at REI - I was expecting it to be pretty crowded and was concerned about the weather conditions, but it turned out to be a great day!

Hong, Chen-Nee, and I were somewhat dubious about the snow conditions based on what we saw from highway 89 - the snow by the roadside was minimal, and a nasty dirty brownish color. There were no other cars in sight (all of the traffic seemed intent on getting to Kirkwood) - we were the only car parked in the area. But, we decided that we might as well check it out while we were there.

From the road, the route went up fairly steadily for the first 1/4 mile, and the snow became more and more beautiful! The trees quickly masked out any traces of road noise behind us, and after the brief climb, we emerged from the woods to find big meadows, and lots of soft fluffy snow :) We only saw one other small group of people the entire day (behind us, right after we reached the meadows), and while it snowed on and off all day, it was never heavy enough to cause concern, and mostly added to the beauty of the area. I'd highly recommend this route for beginners - there isn't much climbing (relatively), route-finding is *extremely* straight-forward (mostly heading straight south/north, with easily distinguishable features), and very little avalanche danger that I could see.

Road directions & description

Photoshopped-together-version of the two maps from the above site:

Big Meadows:

Walking backwards in snowshoes can sometimes be tricky :)

A slight detour to climb a side-peak:

Snow-angel break:

A quick lunch at (very windy!) Round Lake:

A pretty sudden increase in snowfall (doesn't show up that well in pics, though):

A triumphant return to the meadow: Trips & Pictures Tahoe Rim Trail, February 2004