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Trip log:

  • 07:02am - Start out
  • 07:59am - Breakfast break (stayed longer than actually needed because of the lovely lake view)
  • 08:48am - Move on
  • 10:20am - Summit Mt. Tallac
  • 12:21pm - Hike down
  • 02:45pm - Back to the parking

Mt. Tallac is known as one of the most popular trails in the Tahoe region and since it was busy summer weekend, we started the hike early in the morning with the goal of avoiding big crowd. To our surprise, we soon encountered a group of young people who were already ready to go back home. They had started between 4am-ish to catch the sunrise!

The lake quickly unfolded in front of us like a scrolling painting. We stop to have breakfast while enjoying the view … for almost an hour!

Snow patches are visible at the upper part of the mountain.

View of a corner of Desolation Wilderness.

This trail involves a lot of scrambling, which turns out to be even more challenging with the constant increase of the altitude. We felt cheered up by these flourishing yellow and purple flowers.

From the top of Mt. Tallac, one can not only see Lake Tahoe, Cascade Lake and Fallen Leaf Lake, but also several other alpine lakes located in the Desolation Wilderness.

Emerald Bay and Cascade Lake right at our feet

Chipmunks on the summit are not shy at all. They seem to have a good life on the chilly mountain top.

By the time we start walking back, legions of people were ascending even though the sun was hiding and it was starting to rain.

The return trip was much easier, but we felt reluctant to say goodbye to this lake view. We’ll be back soon …