Tahoe Tramping – Rubicon Trail

One of my favorite Tahoe trails is the Rubicon Trail going from D.L. Bliss State Park and continuing on into Emerald Bay State Park.  It is a classic Tahoe trail with outstanding views of the lake and shoreline, and you might even see an Osprey or Bald Eagle at this time of year.  On the trail, you may also hear the low, pulsing hoots of a Blue Grouse, or the rattle and clattering of a Belted Kingfisher.
The only drawback to this moderate hike is that it will require two cars and a

shuttle between the starting and ending points.  One car can either be left at the entrance to Eagle Point Campground on the south side of Emerald Bay, making it an eight mile hike, or up near the Vikingsholm parking lot to make this a six mile hike.

Since the entrance gate at Bliss SP is still closed, you can continue past the main park access road, and head down the Bliss grade to a sandy area above the Balancing Rock Nature Trail.   Head west through the Balancing Rock area, connect in with a paved park road, and follow it to the right and down through the park to Calawee Cove where the Rubicon Trail begins.

From this point the trail is easy to follow all the way to the head of Emerald Bay and the Vikingsholm.  If you want to only hike six miles, you can take the Vikingsholm trail back up 600′ to your shuttle car.  For the eight mile hike, go past the home and over to the visitor center.  The Rubicon Trail re-starts behind the VC, and approaches Eagle Creek.

At the wooden bridge crossing over Eagle Creek, you can go right and reach the base of lower Eagle Falls in a quarter mile.  Crossing the bridge, you will continue on the Rubicon Trail, gradually climb up away from the lake, and finally arrive at the Eagle Point Campground campfire center.  Go right on the paved park road, walk through the upper part of the campground, and reach your shuttle car parked outside of the Eagle Point entrance on Hwy 89.
Generally, this is not a difficult hike.  During my Tahoe years as a park ranger,

and for about ten years after retirement, every June I would hike from the Vikingsholm to Lester Beach in Bliss SP with the third grade classes from Tahoe Lake Elementary school.  In all those 24 years, we never had an eight or nine year old who did not complete the hike,

So I encourage you to give it a try and take John Muir’s advice:  “… throw some tea and bread in an old sack and jump over the back fence.”  Tom