Containing many basalt formations holding many fine routes in the Tahoe area, in this region, located above highway 89, you will find an excellent view of the large ski areas on the eastern rocks of the canyon.
You will find a diverse range of climbing here, including some of the best sport climbing around. There are also a fairly large selection of traditional routes as well.
Being high up in the Sierra, this area will only be climbable when the snow resides on the approach in the spring, usually in April or May, and continuing through late December, depending on the year. On a dry year, you might find this area climbable year-round.
The entire Truckee River Canyon area is about 15 miles long. See individual crag pages for specific directions.
Climbs around here are accessed either from highway 89 between Tahoe City and Truckee, or from interstate 80 near Truckee.
See the Big Chief
page for driving directions from Truckee to the Big Chief parking area, and other nearby crags along forest road 6. These are closed seasonally.
Other Truckee River Canyon crags are reached using highway 89, as are the forest road 6 crags during winter and other snowy months, when the gate stays locked.
For the Truckee River Basalt Area: Head South down Highway 89 out of Truckee towards Lake Tahoe and Tahoe City. You will see the Basalt cliffs of the Truckee River Basalt Area on the left, and you can park in the campgrounds in front of the rocks, yet still on the west side of the Truckee river.
For The Ampitheater:Head South down highway 89 out of Truckee towards Lake Tahoe and Tahoe City. Park just before the turnoff to Alpine Meadows. You will be able to see the Ampitheater just before the bridge heading over The Truckee River.
Weather station 2.3 miles from here
97 Total Routes
['4 Stars',7],['3 Stars',44],['2 Stars',37],['1 Star',7],['Bomb',1]
Browse More Classics in Truckee River Canyon
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Truckee River Canyon:
Featured Route For Truckee River Canyon
Raindance 5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a CA
: Tahoe Vicinity
: ... : Center Wall
This route is in the less overhung (comparitively) cave in the center section of the Big Chief center area. It's still really overhung, but not as much as the other overhung area about 150 feet uphill and left. This route is 5 routes to the left of War Paint (5.9), which always has people on it in the mornings. It also shares the first bolt with the overhung and very juggy Mohawk, which moves up and right, while Raindance moves straight up.Sustained overhang has an excellent section to the fi...[more] Browse More Classics in CA
Local Information for Truckee River Canyon
Latest Regional Forum Messages
By Bill Grasse
From: Durango, CO.
Jul 17, 2007
Does anybody know if there is good free camping somewhere near this area? I'm headed this way to work/climb for a couple of months and I'd like to just camp to save money.
By Justin Johnsen
From: Sacramento, CA
Jun 14, 2014
I've expanded this page a bit since Aron first wrote it, combining areas in this chapter of John Jackson's North Tahoe guide.