Snowshoeing Donner Camp Historic Site

Today we went snowshoeing with the group from Sierra Canyon. There were only six of us. We had a lot of fun and it was a beautiful day. 

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There was about two feet of new snow and as we finished up it started snowing again. Duke brought some of the home made cookies he made Saturday to share.

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We parked at the Donner Camp State Historic site which is just 2.9 miles north of interstate 80 on highway 89. This is where part of the Donner party camped and died.

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We were on established trails about half the time and we were breaking trail in deep new snow the rest of the time. About a half a mile from the road it started snowing lightly. It was like a picture postcard of winter. If you would like to see all of my pictures from today they are available on Flickr here.

Snowshoeing at Donner Summit

Duke and I went snowshoeing with the Sierra Canyon hiking and snowshoeing group today. We parked at the snow-park at Donner pass off of Interstate 80 and hiked along the Pacific Crest Trail over towards highway 40.  It was a beautiful cold day. Most of the snow around here in Reno has melted but up at Donner Summit where we were snowshoeing there was still lots of snow. There were 14 people in the group so we got to see a lot of friends and meet a few new people. It was so good to be out. I am including a few of my pictures below. You can see the rest on Flickr here.
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Below is a picture of me on the lake where we stopped for lunch.

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Here you can see the whole group crossing a lake on the way back.

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First Snowshoeing of the season

Duke and I went out with the Sierra Canyon Hiking Group today for our first snowshoeing trip of the season. We went to Tahoe Meadows. It was sunny and warm and we had a wonderful time. There was only about 8 inches of snow but the ground was well covered. The views of Lake Tahoe and the mountains were breathtaking. The lake looked like it was frozen there were swirls of fog that looked like blowing snow on ice but Lake Tahoe never freezes. I don't know when we will get to snowshoe again. the weather is supposed to be quite warm for the next several days and there is no more snow predicted. If you would like to see all of my pictures of the hike you can see them on Flickr here.
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Lola Montez Lake to Upper Lola Montez Lake to Lily Pond to Buzzards Point with the Sierra Canyon Hiking Group

Thursday six of us fro the Sierra Canyon Hiking Group did an 11 mile hike. We exited interstate 80 at the Soda Springs/Norden exit and parked on the road just north at the Lola Montez trail head.
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The trail to Lower Lola Montez Lake is relatively easy and about three miles long. From there we climbed to Upper Lola Montez Lake. There isn't a trail but someone has put rock cairns along the route and climbing up through the boulders to the lake wasn't too hard.
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From Upper Lola Montez Lake we followed a jeep road and did a bit of cross country to get to Lily Pond. Half the group sat and enjoyed Lily Pond while Duke, Walt and I bushwhacked our way to the top of Buzzards Point. It was a tough slog but the view from the top was phenomenal. By the time we got back down to Lily Pond my pants were covered in thorns.
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If you would like to see all of my pictures from the hike you can see them on Flickr here.

Bear Lake Loop Hike with Sierra Canyon Hiking Group

Duke and I haven't hiked with the Sierra canyon Hiking Group since August 14 before our road  trip. Today we did a great short hikewith the group. The Bear Lake Loop is in the Gold Lakes Basin which is north of Truckee. The hike goes past Big Bear Lake, Little Bear Lake, Cub Lake, Long Lake, Round Lake and Silver Lake. The weather was cold enough for gloves but the sun was shining and I was thrilled be outside enjoying the trees, the mountains, the lakes and the trail.

If you would like to see all the pictures from the hike you can see them on Flickr here.

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Three More Tahoe Rim Trail Hikes

As I've mentioned before some of us from the Sierra Canyon Hiking Group are hiking the Tahoe Rim Trail this summer. Duke and I have missed many of the hikes and we have made up a couple on our own. The trail is 165 miles long and we are hiking it in 8 segments. Duke and I have now done five of the segments and we have three to do. I've blogged about the first two segments that we hiked.

I have not been keeping up with my blogging. There are three more segment hikes that we have now completed so I need to add to the blog.


  • The hiking group didn't hike on the July 4th weekend so on July 3rd Dave, Duke and I hiked the segment from Brockway to Tahoe City. It was a nice day and a very long hike. Unfortunately about five miles form the end we missed a turn and got off the Tahoe Rim Trail. We ended the hike about 100 yards down the road form the end of the Tahoe Rim Trail  but I guess technically we need to go back and make up the part of the trail that we missed. When the group hiked the trail the following week while we were on vacation they said that last part that we missed was the hardest part. The pictures from the hike are on Flickr here.


  • On August 7 after we got back from Iowa Duke and I were back hiking with the group again. We did the 22.8 mile segment from Kingsbury to Big Meadow. The combination of not having hiked in 4 weeks, the distance, lots elevation gain and the heat made this a killer hike. We left home at 5:30 am and got back home at 10 pm. Duke drove so with shuttling the cars he drove 4.5 hours and hiked 10 hours. The best part of this hike was soaking my feet in Star Lake at lunch. Here are my pictures on Flickr from the hike.


  • Last Thursday August 14th we hiked the segment from Big Meadow to Echo Lake. It was 17.5 miles and a lot easier than the hike the week before. I didn't take many pictures but the ones I did take are on Flickr here.

Sierra Canyon Hiking Group Monday Hike at Donner Lakes

The Sierra Canyon Hiking Group hiked from Interstate 80 at Donner Pass through the Donner Pass Lakes to Old Highway 40 and back. The air was very smoky from wild fires burning in other parts of California but it was still a beautiful day.

Here we are in the parking lot getting ready to start out.
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We snowshoed on this trail last winter, across this lake. Look at the difference.
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The view from our lunch stop was stupendous in spite of the haze.

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If you would like to see or download other pictures from the hike they are available on Flickr here.

Hiking the Tahoe Rim Trail from Spooner Summit to Kingsbury Grade with the Sierra Canyon Hiking Group

A group of us who live in the Del Webb Sierra Canyon Development in Reno have decided to hike the Tahoe Rim Trail this summer.  As the name suggests the Tahoe Rim Trail is a trail on the mountain crests around Lake Tahoe. The trail is 165 miles long and we are planning to do it in 8 segments. Thursday we did our first segment from Spooner Summit on Highway 50 south to Kingsbury Grade.  It is the shortest segment (only 12.2 miles.) Fifteen of us completed it with no problem. It is an easy to walk on trail. It was a warm glorious day and there were stunning views.

Below are a few pictures from the hike. If you would like to see the rest of the pictures you can see them on Flickr here. There was a little snow beside the trail in a few places but most of the snow is gone.

One of the most surprising things on the hike were the beautiful red flower we found growing up out of dead wood in a few places. Since getting home I discovered on the Tahoe Country .com web site that the flower is the snowplant.

"A fairly common site in the Tahoe
landscape as the snow melts is the Snowplant (Sarcodes snaguinea), a member
of the Wintergreen family. This
strange asparagus-like plant does not photo-synthesize, but receives its nourishment
from parasitizing the roots of neighboring plants and other decaying organic
matter. It is protected by California law and there are heavy fines for tampering
with the Snowplant due to its extreme beauty and rarity (it is found only
in the Yellow Pine and Red Fir forests of California and southern Oregon)."



The Humbug Trail at Malakoff Diggins State Historic paek – The Sierra Canyon Hiking Group Thursday Hike

Last Thursday seven of us from the Sierra Canyon Hiking Group went to Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park in California and hiked the humbug trial down Humbug Creek to the Yuba River.  It took us about two hours to get to the park from Reno.

From the park brochure I learned that Malakoff Diggins was the largest
and richest hydraulic gold mine in the world. Gold was discovered there
in 1851 and hydraulic mining began in 1853. Millions of dollars worth
of gold were recovered and 41 million cubic yards of earth were
excavated leaving an open pit over a mile long and up to 600 feet deep.

The hike was beautiful. We went down about 1000 feet and 2.5 miles to the Yuba River, had lunch by the river, and then climbed back up again. Afterward we stopped for a few minutes at the park headquarters where they have rebuilt the old gold mining town of North Bloomfield.

Marion at Yuba River 5-29-08 
Yuba river 5-29-08