Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Tahoe Donner Glacier Way Trailhead: walks, views and DLRT access

The Glacier Way Trailhead gives Tahoe Donner visitors access to the trail network of this neighborhood northwest of Central Truckee in California. Most trails are fire roads allowing various non-motorized uses. For your orientation, trailheads and intersections are numbered on the Tahoe Donner Association Trail Map and corresponding trail markers (24 on the Glacier Way post, as the picture shows) are found within the real trail system, which is open to hikers, mountain bikers and horseback riders. The starting point of the half-way completed Donner Lake Rim Trail (DLRT) is about one mile away (marker 22).

Over the last 35 years over 150 fires burned around Tahoe Donner. Not far from the trailhead you will find a sign of the Forestry Department, indicating the implementation of the Tahoe Donner Fuel Break Reforestation Project. Further west of this area of strategic thinning and planting, you will come to an open slope, still showing some burned trees. A downhill trail leads you to grand vista points, from where you may overlook entire Donner Lake. The picture shows the eastern section of the lake and Donner Memorial State Park. Beyond this park, you see parts of the Tahoe National Forest south of Truckee—the Sawtooth Trail landscape —and further east the yellow-brown meadow of the Martis Creek Wildlife Area (see Martis Creek Trail).  

Getting to the Glacier Way Parking & Picnic Area (trail marker 24)
From Central Truckee, drive west on Donner Pass Road and turn right onto Northwoods Boulevard. After about two miles Northwoods Blvd. splits into a loop. Take the left branch of this loop, pass Zermatt Dr. junction, turn left into Skislope Way and follow this road for about three miles. The entry to the Glacier Way Trailhead parking lot is located at the corner of Skislope Way and Glacier Way.

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