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The Unmarred, Unknown Trails of Carson Valley, Nevada
Wednesday June 13, 2018   |

©Visit Carson Valley

CARSON VALLEY, NV – Carson Valley sits on the eastern slope of the Sierra Nevada, a bona fide basecamp to over 50 miles and growing of multi-use singletrack. Many of these trails are still unknown, unmarred and fresh for the taking. While nearby and more crowded high-altitude trails sit under snowpack well into the late spring, the Carson Valley trails are rideable most, if not all, of the year.

The Carson Range, rising between Carson Valley and Lake Tahoe, tempts riders with the likes of more than 3,800 feet of nearly continuous high-speed singletrack descent from the top of the Tahoe Rim Trail to the valley below.

For those seeking a solid pedal or just a casual route, singletrack out-and-backs and loops span the region. Be it high speed or high endurance, rides in Carson Valley often start among sage and bitterbrush in the high desert. Push on a little further and trails up their technical challenge but reward with creek crossings, shaded pine forests and spectacular valley views to the east and Lake Tahoe views over the summit to the west, each serving up an average of 300 days per year of bluebird skies. Rides finish just pedals away from a classic blend of authentic and down home services for refreshing and laid-back recovery, be it historic thirst parlors, satisfying sandwiches or hot spring soaks.


The development and maintenance of Carson Valley’s trails is due in large part to the efforts of many volunteers working with the Carson Valley Trails Association (CVTA). Clear Creek Trail and Sierra Canyon Trail are the jewels of the CVTA’s collaborative accomplishments. Several thousand volunteer hours have been invested in trail building, but CVTA and partners aren’t finished. Trail work continues with a focus on extending Clear Creek Trail with a connector to Spooner Summit South. CVTA’s tireless dedication is evident in the maintenance of the trails.

Sierra Canyon is the pinnacle of Carson Valley’s recent trail developments. The Sierra Canyon trailhead intersects the Tahoe Rim Trail and sits at an elevation of nearly 8,500 feet. The views from this vantage are spectacular with the entire Lake Tahoe basin to the west, the span of Carson Valley to the east and Jobs Peak and Jobs Sister peeking from the southeast. Dropping in here initiates a long ride to Genoa, Nevada with substantial elevation loss and terrain diversity. Ten miles of singletrack, 3,500 feet of descent, moderate difficulty, countless switchbacks and careful trail maintenance amount to a killer ride. Enjoy the descent via self-shuttle dropping you near the starting point or earn-your-turns by riding Sierra Canyon as an out-and-back. Sierra Canyon can also be enjoyed as part of a bigger ride, such as a climb up Kingsbury Stinger, north on Tahoe Rim Trail and ending down Sierra Canyon. No matter the ambition, all rides on Sierra Canyon end with a mandatory stop at Genoa Bar, Nevada’s oldest thirst parlor. 

Image©Visit Carson Valley

Carson Valley, home to Nevada’s first settlement, beckons you to check-out after a full day of dropping-in. The four communities of Carson Valley are a sweet balance of convenience (just 45 minutes south of Reno International Airport) and unhampered. There’s no attitude here, just a welcoming dose of character and love for the landscape.  

For additional details on mountain biking in Carson Valley, visit visitcarsonvalley.org/top-mountain-biking-trails-carson-valley. For more information on Visit Carson Valley, visit online. For photos of mountain biking in Carson Valley, visit here.

About Carson Valley:
Nestled at the base of the Sierra, Carson Valley begs visitors to not just drive through it, but to it. Located 45 miles south of Reno-Tahoe International Airport and 12 miles east of South Lake Tahoe, the region’s natural beauty is legendary: wide-open farms, ranches, bands of wild horses and birds of prey dot the landscape. Outdoor recreation enthusiasts follow all points of the compass with more than 50+ miles of hiking, mountain biking or walking trails along with world class road biking. The valley’s museums, arts, antiquing, Basque dining, historic watering holes and more add to the destination's authentic culture. The region includes the communities of Minden, Gardnerville, Topaz Lake and Genoa, Nevada’s first settlement dating back to 1851. Explore the land of everyday legends at VisitCarsonValley.org.

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