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General Information: This is a fun alternative to the South Shore Bike Trail that is easy enough for a competent 7 or 8 year old child yet includes beautiful scenery and finishes with an inspiring view of Mount Tallac across Fallen Leaf Lake. It includes two miles of single track trail and 3 miles of paved riding (one half mile on Fallen Leaf Lake Road and two and a half miles on the Bike Trail.)

Where To Start: From "The Y" (Raley's Center) in South Lake Tahoe, drive north on highway 89 towards Emeral Bay. Just after the double lane highway turns into a single lane and curves right (watch the speed trap here!) the South Shore Bike Trail begins off to the right. Park on the shoulder near the beginning of the bike trail. The ride starts across the street from the bike trail at the Forest Service gate.

Trail Description: The wide path quickly breaks into three single tracks as it continues to head away from the road. Take the smaller single track that veers right. The trail will "T" into another trail shortly. Turn right (north). Continue along this trail, making sure to always head north. The trail is mostly flat with a few short rises that a small child may need to walk. At 1.3 miles, the trail will split near a Forest Service gate off of the paved Fallen Leaf Lake Road. Pass the gate and ride directly across the paved road. The trail picks up here and continues to head north for another 0.7 miles. It parallels a campground road for a short bit then heads left and over a small rise. On the other side of the rise is Fallen Leaf Lake. This is a beautiful place to relax with stunning views across the lake of Mount Tallac. There's lots of rocks and sticks too for the kids to play with. Enjoy!

To get back, either retrace your steps, or to make a loop, head back to Fallen Leaf Lake Road, take a left and head down to Highway 89. Be very careful crossing this busy highway then turn right (south) on the South Shore Bike Trail which will dump you out onto Highway 89 two and a half miles later right next to your car!

Extension 1: Instead of crossing Fallen Leaf Lake Road, continue on the trail as it parallels Fallen Leaf Lake Road. This trail gets more difficult and eventually intersects Tahoe Mountain Road. Turn right onto the paved road, then right again onto Fallen Leaf Lake Rd. Ride this road back to the gate and pick up the trail to Fallen Leaf Lake.

A trail also continues along the shore of Fallen Leaf Lake, over the causeway (worth a look anyway) and then right (east) on a trail back to Highway 89. This adds a couple of miles to the round trip if you're feeling daring.

Environmental Concerns: Just the usual...if you brought it with you, take it when you leave.

Advisory: None.

 

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