Tunnel Creek: Nevada’s hidden hiking gem

No shortage of stunning scenery exists in the Lake Tahoe Basin, but while the majority of sightseers flock to the southwestern portion of the lake to take in the postcard-picture-perfect vistas afforded by Emerald Bay, the northeastern portion of the lake offers a quieter and equally spectacular experience.

Tunnel Creek, just outside of Incline Village, is a popular trail with locals due to the unparalleled look at Crystal Bay as it spans out beneath the ascending trail, along with the swerve of coastline as it winds southward. Couple those views with its relative degree of seclusion, particularly in comparison with much of the easy-to-moderate hiking trails in Lake Tahoe, and any avid hiker can see why the trail is an indispensable part of the basin’s recreation portfolio.

The trailhead is located just south of Ponderosa Ranch roughly one mile from the downtown corridor of Incline Village, Nev.

Ponderosa pines dominate the East Shore, as the Carson Range has a different geology and ecology than the Sierra Nevada Mountains that populate the West Shore.

One of the chief attributes of Tunnel Creek Trail is the great views come early and often, so those with less of an appetite for exercise or on a time crunch don’t have to carve out a huge portion of the day to get the experience.

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