Horses and stock are allowed on all sections of the TRT, with the exception of the Tahoe Meadows Interpretive Trail and a section of the Mt. Rose Trail. Heading west from the Mt. Rose Trailhead, equestrians and mountain bikers must take the dirt road route to Relay Peak. A roughly parallel single-track TRT route is open to hikers only, and passes Galena Waterfall before ascending to Relay Peak. There, the trail merges for equestrian and hikers, but is closed to Mt. Bikers due to vehicle access restrictions in the Mt. Rose Wilderness.

Equestrian

FURTHER RESOURCES: "Trailhead Parking for Horse Trailers", "Sharing the TRT with Horses"
"TRT Segments by Terrain Difficulty", "Leave No Trace for Equestrians", "TRTA General Equestrian Presentation",
and "Equestrian Camping along the TRT"

 Before embarking on a hike with your livestock, it is important to consider the following:

  • Experience level needed for each segment
  • Safety precautions with your livestock
  • Location of water sources
  • Feeding options for livestock (weed free)
  • How to leave a minimum impact on the trail

Although the Tahoe Rim Trail was constructed for hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians, it is imperative that all equestrians and their livestock have adequate experience to use the trail.

Restrictions on Livestock:

  • Do not hitch, tether, or hobble a horse or other saddle or pack animal within 200 feet of a water source or within 100 feet of a campsite.
  • In Desolation Wilderness (Echo Lake to Barker Pass) livestock is limited to two per person, or 12 livestock in one group.

Common Horse Sense

Be aware... as the name implies, all segments of the Tahoe Rim Trail feature high elevation riding along mountain ridges. None of the TRT segments should be considered beginner or novice riders. We base trail difficulty for equestrian users on terrain, not distance. Distances range from 12.2 miles (Spooner Summit South to Kingsbury Grade North) to 32.5 miles (Echo Lakes to Barker Pass). With the exception of an approximately 50-mile stretch of the trail where the Pacific Crest Trail and the TRT overlap, mountain bikes are allowed, and on some segments, can be quite numerous. Make sure your horse has a calm and steady disposition to be able to handle this type of integrated use. The TRT is not the place for a spooky or green broke horse or novice rider. Equestrian use of the TRT is quite small compared to the number of hiker and bikers (some surveys showing only 2% of the total use). Nevertheless, the TRT is a beautiful place to ride, despite some segments being challenging.

To ride an entire segment involves either having two trailers or leaving a car at the end of the segment to drive back and get your trailer. Hardy riders on horses in good shape typically ride an entire segment in a single day, with the exception of the 32.5 mile stretch from Echo Lakes to Barker Pass (which normally requires an overnight camp. Additionally, segments can be ridden part way by either going back the way you came or by connecting to other trails that intersect the TRT. Maps showing these trails are available at most outdoor stores or thorough the TRTA. Also, for specific information on each trail segment and descriptions of where to park your horse trailer, we recommend purchasing the official guide to the TRT.

For more information, please call (775) 298-4485 or email info@tahoerimtrail.org.