Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The new Kingsbury South Trailhead and TRT connector trail

A half-mile-long, single-track trail now connects the parking lot at the base of the Stagecoach Express ski lift in Kingsbury South (KB/S) with the Tahoe Rim Trail (TRT). In the past, you had to climb a cleared ski slope next to towering condominiums. Tim Hauserman had this to say [1]:

Amidst high-rise condominiums and a huge parking lot, the trailhead is located underneath a ski lift. Are we talking a wilderness experience here or what? Don't worry, it gets better. You start with a 0.3-mile, very steep climb to a saddle, where you cross under the Stagecoach ski lift. Up here you go 80 yards south on a road to the trail's [TRT's] resumption, which immediately turns east.

The resumption has become a smooth TRT continuation. Today you can turn west as well—towards the “lucky number post” and the junction with the Van Sickle Trail; and the TRT section that skirts Kingsbury, crosses Kingsbury Grade Hwy 207 and connects with the Castle Rock Trail.

To get to what once was the “TRT's resumption,” start out from the KB/S trailhead kiosk south of the parking lot. The kiosk (a part of which seen in the top picture) displays a current trail map and has tidbids of local folklore and history, telling you about Tahoe's summer splendor in the 19th century and about mailman “Snowshoe” Thompson's duties on skis. Follow an easy climb up the trail until you see the post with the mirror image of the TRT letters (shown on the left side), indicating—in my interpretation—that you are still not on, but about to step onto the TRT. Turn right, and you will reach the “resumption” point in a minute. Turn left, if you want to explore Heavenly's East Lake Reservoir and continue to Cold Creek, Star Lake or Freel Peak. Enjoy the well-marked trail system around Kingsbury and the scenery that has changed somewhat since the days of “Snowshoe” Thompson, but is as magnificent as ever.

Getting to the KB/S trailhead
This trailhead is located 1.5 miles south of Highway 207 between Carson Valley and Stateline in Nevada. For details, see the “Getting there” section in the description for the East Peak Lake hike, while ignoring the now obsolete Stagecoach Express ski lift part: handouts are now provided at the new kiosk a few steps to the left of the ski lift base .

Location keywords: Kingsbury Grade, Daggett Pass, Douglas County, Carson Range, northwest Nevada.

[1] Tim Hauserman: The Tahoe Rim Trail. Wilderness Press, Berkeley, California, Fifth printing March 2004; page 145

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