Snowshoe Donner Peak

Destination: Donner Peak
Mileage: 3.2 round trip
Trailhead: Plowed area near intersection of Sugar Bowl Rd and Lake Mary Rd
Elevation:  7,053 up to 8,008 feet

My powder hound was in need of a snowy adventure; I searched Outdoor Project’s Best Snowshoe Trails in Tahoe’s Backcountry and decided on Donner Peak. After parking in the small plowed parking area we packed extra warm layers, summit beers, and some snacks then strapped on our snowshoes and hiked along the snow-covered road to the buried trailhead.

Click for larger map.

Click for larger map.

For the entire hike we were surrounded by snow-covered peaks!

The view toward Donner Ski Ranch.

The view toward Donner Ski Ranch.

The beauty of snowshoeing is there are no official routes so you can choose your own adventure.

Fun with snow and shadows.

Fun with a powder hound, snow, and shadows.

We found our way to a high point that looked toward Donner Peak to have a quick snack before climbing through the trees to the ridge.

Looking toward Donner Peak.

Looking toward Donner Peak. Well, Aspen’s isn’t, but the camera is…

The top of Donner Peak is a rock cathedral with ice forming on the walls.

The final climb to the rock amphitheater at the peak.

The final climb to the rock amphitheater at the peak.

We scrambled up a snowbank to the top of the amphitheater to take in the full 360-view.

Scrambling to the very top from within the rock amphitheater.

Scrambling to the very top from within the rock amphitheater.

The view from the top - looking toward Donner Lake and Truckee.

The view from the top – looking toward Donner Lake and Truckee.

The view from the top - looking toward Donner Ski Ranch.

The view from the top – looking toward Donner Ski Ranch.

The sun was nearing the mountains on our hike back down, but we made it back to the car in plenty of sunlight.

Racing the sun back to the car.

Racing the sun back to the car.

Harper Fawn at the parking area.

Harper Fawn at the parking area.

Snowy,
Trails

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