I love the feeling of being alone in nature.
Being able to stop and stare at the views…. without a group of 20 people behind you.
Being able to hear birds chirping… and not someone’s backpack boombox (looking at you, Camelback Mountain!)
So for that reason — I absolutely LOVED the Skunk Harbor Trail in North Lake Tahoe.
Obviously, the views were great, too!
- Less than 3 miles round trip
- Easy hiking terrain / gravel road for most of the time
- Down-and-back format
- Downhill on the way / uphill on the return
- Best time to go — late spring / summer / early fall
- Beat the crowds by going in spring or fall
- Beach area / several coves to explore
- Abandoned house by the beach (historical landmark)
- Start of Trail is NOT marked — look for a green gate by a small parking lot about 2 miles down NV-28 (If you’re coming from Carson City / HW 50)
Skunk Harbor was one of the most secluded trails I’ve been on — I only encountered MAYBE five people, total, in a couple hours of being there.
I had the entire beach to myself for most of the time!
Which is great, because I can have space to be basic AF and take tons of pictures and videos for my Instagram story. Ha!
(I don’t apologize for being basic while traveling, though — I’m not on this planet forever so I intend to enjoy & document it!)
I went in mid-April, on a Saturday, and lucked out with the weather. It was 65 degrees, sunny and barely any wind! Obviously, use your common sense when it comes to snow — this trail may not be accessible in the winter.
As I mentioned, this is not a difficult hike. But you still get great views almost the entire way down!
This is also a great hike to do by yourself.
If you’re coming from Reno, North Lake Tahoe is not even an hour away, and makes for a great day trip.
VIDEO GUIDE: SKUNK HARBOR FOR FIRST-TIMERS