Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The first steps on the Rim to Reno Trail: from the Thomas Creek trailhead to the Dry Pond Trail

The Rim to Reno Trail is a long hiking trail traversing the Mount Rose Summit and Bronco Creek area in the Carson Range, from where it winds down toward Reno's suburbs. The upper portion of the Rim to Reno (Rim2Reno or simply RtR) trail shares its path with the Tahoe Rim Trail (TRT) to the Tamarack Waterfall and with the Mount Rose Trail—and then continues its scenic miles through the Mount Rose Wilderness west of Church Peak and Alpine Walk Peak before reaching the Thomas Creek canyon. If your goal is to hike up there—planning a Reno to Rim (Reno2Rim) adventure—the 1.5-mile-long section between the Thomas Creek Trailhead and the Reno2Rim/Dry Pond Trail junction are your boastful beginnings.

This section is a popular single-track trail alongside and across Thomas Creek, frequented by dog walkers, hikers, mountain bikers and equestrian users. Along this riparian trail through a forest of Jeffrey pines, white firs and quaking aspens you will hear the flowing waters of the creek competing with the sounds of fellow travelers and occasional motorized traffic using Thomas Creek Road alongside the opposite creek bank.

The trail post at the Reno2Rim/Dry Pond Trail junction (right-side picture) shows you the distance back to your starting point and the distance of three miles to the Whites Creek Trailhead, which can be reached from this junction by taking the route uphill and past the seasonally wet Dry Pond via Dry Pond Trail. The post doesn't tell you the hiking distance to the rim. It is at least seventeen miles, depending on whether you are going to take the North Loop or the South Loop Route. The map of the Rim to Reno Regional Trail System may help you to trace out your route and to prepare smartly, especially during the cold and snowy season.    

Getting to the Thomas Creek Trailhead
From U.S. Highway 395 south of Reno, exit onto the Mount Rose State Scenic Byway (State Route 431). Follow this four-lane highway westbound for four miles and turn right onto Timberline Drive, just before Highway 431 changes into a two-lane road. Proceed all the way to the end of the paved Timberline Drive to from where it continues as a dirt road. Take the bridge over Thomas Creek. There is a parking area to your left next to the river. Or continue straight forward for another 0.1 mile to get to the main parking area with restrooms, equestrian parking, picnic tables and a trailhead kiosk. See the map for trail details.

Keywords: Rim-to-Reno, Reno-to-Rim, Rim2Reno, Reno2Rim, trail network, access to Mt. Rose Wilderness area, Nevada.

No comments: