Ralston Peak

 8 votes

5.8 Miles 9.3 Kilometers


100%

Singletrack

2,617' 798 m

Ascent

-2,616' -797 m

Descent

9,149' 2,789 m

High

6,532' 1,991 m

Low

17%

Avg Grade (10°)

39%

Max Grade (21°)

All Clear

4 hours agoUpdate

It's hard to beat the ratio of distance to views on this trail even though the climb is quite tough.

Mike Ahnemann

Overview

With less than 3 miles to travel to the top of Ralston Peak, it would be hard to find a better bang for your buck than this trail. The climb is steep, and rises 2,600 feet, but the views are outstanding. It's a route definitely worth checking out if you just have time for one great hike.
Features: River/Creek — Views

Description

There's a small trailhead parking lot on the north side of Rte. 50, right across from the Sacramento campground. Follow the dirt road to the obvious parking, or if that's full, you can park along Rte. 50.

The trail starts climbing right from the trailhead, mellows out a bit at about .75 miles in, and then really kicks up at about 1.5 miles in. You'll start out making your way through a dense forest of fir trees, with plenty of shade. You'll get close to Tamarack Creek for a bit - enjoy the lush vegetation and wildflowers there, but before long, you'll start working to gain the ridge, navigating switchbacks through more open, drier forest.

Around 2.3 miles, look for a junction, with a less-worn trail heading off to the right (northeast) to Ralston Peak. Take this small branch, and finish out the climb through beautiful wildflowers, and then continue over a rocky section. You’ll be rewarded with epic views of the Desolation Wilderness and a far away glimpse of Lake Tahoe.

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4.5 from 8 votes


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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Oct 17, 2017
Mark Walker
Out and back. Wonderful vista.Peaceful for a Tahoe trail during the week.Only saw 1 runner But The Manitou Incline has it beat has far as the climb. 6.5mi — 4h 00m
Sep 9, 2017
Dylan Taylor
Hiked to Ralston Peak summit down to Lake Aloha/Lake of the Woods. Returned via Ralston Trail. 12mi — 6h 00m
Aug 26, 2017
Caroline Li
Jul 21, 2017
Jamie Perkins
Jul 2, 2017
Azar Nelson
Jun 18, 2017
David Nash
Jun 2, 2014
M. Morley
Apr 3, 2014
Jeff Issenberg

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 8 votes

#1169

Overall
  4.5 from 8 votes
5 Star
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Rankings

#158

in California

#1,169

Overall
231 Views Last Month
1,174 Since Aug 9, 2016
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

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Conditions


All Clear 4 hours ago
Dry: On 10-17-17, it was windy and cold but clear. There was just a storm in the last 2 days so there should snow now.
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