Best Places in Truckee to go Backcountry Skiing – and Where to Rent Gear or Get Advice

backcountry skiing, truckee California photographer Andy Giordano

The Tahoe-Truckee area has long been known for its access to incredible backcountry adventures that offer stunning views and world-class terrain. In Truckee, you don’t have to travel far from downtown to find yourself skiing or riding lines that vary from mellow, wide-open snowfields to expert level chutes.

When deciding where to go and when, there are a variety of resources available—from understanding the snow conditions and concerns as reported daily by the Sierra Avalanche Center, to heading out with an experienced guide from companies like Alpine Skills International and Tahoe Mountain School. Local shops like Tahoe Mountain Sports and The Back Country can also be great sources of information when planning a trip into the backcountry or trying to get outfitted with the right gear.

Ready to head out? Consider adding these backcountry spots to your bucket list:

Andesite Peak

An intermediate ski, Andesite Peak starts from the same well-trafficked trailhead on Donner Summit that skiers heading to Castle Peak will use. When you reach the top, stunning 360-degree views of Castle Peak will greet you, as well as views of Northstar, Sugar Bowl and Carpenter Ridge.

Castle Peak

Offering a diverse range of descent options and popular for its spring corn snow conditions, Castle Peak is a Truckee area favorite. Routes include intermediate bowls, advanced lines and expert-only chutes that offer something for varying experience levels. For those who want to plan an overnight excursion with skiing directly from your door, the Peter Grubb Hut can be your home away from home.

Donner Peak

With iconic views of Donner Lake, Donner Peak is where you’ll find both extreme terrain above the train tracks, and mellow, low-angle slopes that take you to the summit. Park anywhere along Old Hwy 40 near the top. You’ll start skinning up the Northwest side.

Looking for other places to go backcountry skiing in the region? Check out Tahoe Mountain Sports’ “Best Places to Go Backcountry Skiing.”