“The standard winter ascent route for Mount Tallac. Ascends the prominent NE ridge of the mountain.”
— Paul Zander
Mount Tallac has some of the best ski terrain in the Lake Tahoe Basin and absolutely spectacular views. Skiing this mountain is a must do for a backcountry skier in Tahoe, and this is the most direct route to the summit in the winter.
Start at a pullout near the junction of Spring Creek Road and Highway 89, or at the Taylor Creek snowpark. Make your way through the neighborhood to the end of Spring Creek Road.
Head through small open trees towards the bottom of the prominent NE Bowl. If snow is low, this section may be a bit brushy. The slope is gentle at first, but quickly steepens. At around 7400' there is a flat that marks the bottom of the NE Bowl. At this point you want to head right (north) onto the treed ridgeline that forms the northern boundary of the NE bowl. Follow this steep ridge until near 9000 feet, just below the main spine of the mountain. Now head left (south) across the treeless upper NE Bowl and then up to the summit. If avalanche danger is high, do not traverse across the bowl. Stick to the rocky ridgeline on the right. Slower going, but much safer. Enjoy one of the best views in the Tahoe Basin!
This route can be used to access essentially any ski descent on Mount Tallac, but is most commonly used to ski down The Cross, the Northeast Bowl or other variations.