The Backcountry with Brandon: Mount Tallac

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Updated: 7/30/2014 11:55 pm
RENO, Nev. ( & KRNV) -- Chief Meteorologist Brandon Wholey has been hiking all month, and he could not wait to showcase the hike that he says has the best view of Lake Tahoe.

He is taking us to the top of Mount Tallac on the southwest corner of the Tahoe Basin.

Brandon said it has the best view of Tahoe and an expansive view of Desolation Wilderness. It is always a summertime favorite, featuring a long and tedious journey up to the summit.

Mount Tallac rises to just over 9,700 feet above Fallen Leaf Lake. Even though you will be tackling over 3,300 feet of pure elevation gain, there are some great views at the start of the hike to keep you motivated. In terms of distance, the hike is 9.5 miles roundtrip, so be sure to wear good hiking shoes and drink plenty of water. Brandon recommends at least a couple liters of water and allow for extra breaks.

The journey will take you into the front end of Desolation Wilderness, so you will want to be sure to get a free permit at the trailhead. Before you know it, you will be above most of the treeline enjoying some spectacular views of Lake Tahoe, which will keep you motivated to reach the summit.

Then there is the stairs, the ultimate workout. After one last view of Tahoe, the top of Tallac opens up an expansive view of Desolation Wilderness. The best features from the summit of Tallac including Fallen Leaf Lake, all of Lake Tahoe, Cascade Lake, and Emerald Bay.

Even though this hike gets the best of Brandon every year, it is always great to see the jewel of the Sierra.

To get to the trailhead, take Highway 89 out of South Lake Tahoe and look for the brown signs.
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