Recreation

red of indian paintbrush and purple lupines

The Tahoe National Forest is a year-round playground. So come for a visit, relax and rejuvenate with our mountain air!

With breathtaking mountain peaks, lush meadows filled with wildflowers, historic mining towns, destination vacation spots at Goodyears Bar, Downieville, Sierra City, Truckee, Yuba River, the Lakes Basin Area and the Jackson Meadows Region, the Tahoe National Forest is one of the most popular recreation forests in the US.

  • In winter, there are outstanding winter sports opportunities including world renowned downhill ski areas and extensive snowmobile and cross-country ski trails to experience.
  • In the summer, an extensive array of hiking trails (including a portion of the Pacific Crest Trail) , OHV, equestrian and mountain biking trails provide access to many lakes, rivers, and mountain tops.

Developed recreation sites including campgrounds, boat ramps, picnic areas, nature trails and even a fire lookout or two that can be rented for overnight occupancy.

Travel Corridors

The recreation information is primarily organized by travel corridor. The main travel corridors are: Interstate 80, Highway 49, Highway 20, Highway 89 (North and South), Foresthill Divide Road, Mosquito Ridge Road, Bowman Road, Marysville Road, and Gold Lakes Road. Activities such as camping and hiking will also have related links to boating, biking, trailheads, parking, and OHV riding in the same corridor.

Accessible Recreation Facilities

Our accessible recreation guide lists facilities and recreation opportunities by Ranger District with features that are accessible for people with disabilities. (Not all locations/facilities listed are 100% accessible.) Because we are continually adding new accessible sites, please call ahead to the Ranger District for more information. The facilities listed meet federal accessibility standards (32-inch minimum width for doorways, adequate room for turning etc).

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Recreation Conditions Report

 Area Name Status Area Conditions
Aspen Group Camp Closed to Visitor
Aspen Picnic Site Closed to Visitor
Bear Valley Campground Closed to Visitor Water not tested. Boil water before drinking.
Big Bend Group Campground   
Big Reservoir Campground Closed to Visitor
Bowman Road Closed to Visitor See Motor Vehicle Use Map for additional information.
Burlington Motorcycle Trail System    See Motor Vehicle Use Map for additional information. Please call the Yuba River Ranger District for Open/Closed Status dial (530) 478-6253 ext. 243.
Calpine Fire Lookout Open to Visitor Popular rental with reservations booked approximately 6 months in advance.
Canyon Creek Campground Closed to Visitor
Carlton Flat Campground Closed to Visitor Campground is open with all sites along the river now.
Carr Lake Campground Open to Visitor PG&E website - www.pge.com/recreation
Castle Valley Road Closed to Visitor Gate closed
Cold Creek Campground Closed to Visitor Spring re-opening for late April 2018 depending on conditions.
Cottonwood Creek Campground Closed to Visitor Spring re-opening for late April 2018 depending on conditions.
East Meadow Campground Closed to Visitor
Findley Campground Closed to Visitor
Fir Top Campground Closed to Visitor
Foresthill OHV Area Open to Visitor
Giant Gap Campground Closed to Visitor
Grouse Falls Overlook Trail Open to Visitor
Grouse Ridge Campground   
Hallelujah Trail Open to Visitor
Hampshire Rocks Campground   
Indian Springs Campground Closed to Visitor no water 5/25/16
Italian Bar Trail Open to Visitor Trail maintenance has not been done.
Jackson Meadow Reservoir Open to Visitor 4/01/2018:  Spring riding conditions with the warmer weather, watch for running water and wash-out sections of trails/groomed routes.  All Over-Snow Vehicles riding on public lands must have current registration.
Jackson Point Boat In Campground Closed to Visitor
Lake of the Woods Closed to Visitor
Lindsey Lake Campground Open to Visitor PG&E website - www.pge.com/recreation
Little Lasier Meadow Horse Camp Closed to Visitor Spring re-opening for late May 2018 depending on conditions.
Little Truckee Summit OHV/Snowmobile Staging Area Open to Visitor  This has been a mild winter with limited snowfall.  Trailhead location and snow conditions change rapidly.  Check the winter recreation tab for Sierraville snowmobile trails to see most current conditions and most recent grooming dates of snowmobile routes.  The Yuba Pass SnoPark on Hwy 49 has generally offered better snow conditions for 2018.
Loch Leven Trail Open to Visitor
Lower Little Truckee Campground Closed to Visitor Spring re-opening for late April 2018 depending on conditions.
Manzanita Day Use, Swim Area Picnic Site Open to Visitor
Meadow Knolls Group Camp Closed to Visitor
Meadow Lake Campground Closed to Visitor
Meadow Lake Shoreline Campground Closed to Visitor
Parker Flat Staging Area Open to Visitor
Pass Creek Campground Closed to Visitor
Pioneer Trail Open to Visitor
Ralston Picnic Site Open to Visitor
Rucker Lake Campground Open to Visitor PG&E website at http://recreation.pge.com/home.asp
Silver Tip Group Campground Closed to Visitor
Skillman Campground   
Sugar Pine Boat Ramp Open to Visitor
Sugar Pine Staging Area Open to Visitor
Upper Little Truckee Campground Closed to Visitor Spring re-opening for late April 2018 depending on conditions.
White Cloud Campground   
Woodcamp Campground Closed to Visitor
Woodcamp Picnic Site Closed to Visitor
Yuba Pass Campground Closed to Visitor
Yuba Pass Snowpark Open to Visitor 4/1/2018:  Yuba Pass SnoPark/OSV staging area on Highway 49 still has 3+ feet of continuous snow coverage.

Spotlights

Burlington Motorcycle Trail System

trail bike graphic

The Burlington Motorcycle Trail System includes 50 miles of winding, narrow trails.  The staging area is 0.1 mile from Highway 20 on the Chalk Bluff Road.

For Open/Closed status, please call the Tahoe National Forest, Yuba River Ranger District office in Camptonville, CA at (530) 478-6253, ext. 243.

Link to map