2.2 miles
Distance
27 ft
Climb
-768 ft
Descent
00:20:00
Avg time

Details

  • Activities
    • Mountain Bike
    • E-Bike
    • Hike
    • Trail Running
    • Horse
  • Riding Area
    Sawtooth
    Truckee, California
  • Ref Number
    #16E85
  • Difficulty Rating
  • Voted Difficulty
    Black Diamond (1 vote)
  • Hiking SAC Scale
    T2 Mountain Hiking
  • Trail Type
    Singletrack
  • Bike Type
    DH, AM
  • Direction
    Both Directions
    Popular direction shown
  • Climb Difficulty
    Double Black Diamond
  • Physical Rating
    Hard
  • Trail Visibility
    Always easy to follow
  • Dogs Allowed
    Yes
  • eBike Allowed
    Yes up to Class 1
  • TTFs on Trail
    Berm, Drop, Jump, Gap Jump, Rock Face, Rock Garden
  • Global Ranking
    #3681 in Mountain Biking [+]
    • #1575 in E-Biking
    • #34064 in Trail Running
    • #28299 in Hiking
    • #687 in Horseback
  • Local Popularity
    95 in Mountain Biking [+]
    • 100 in E-Biking
    • 5 in Trail Running
    • 65 in Hiking
    • 5 in Horseback

Upper section of Big Chief Trail - if you enjoyed the features of the lower section but were hoping for a bit more momentum, you will love this section. The upper section is more difficult than the lower, with a handful of mandatory technical sections approaching double-black difficulty.

The Truckee Trails Foundation worked with the USFS and Northstar California on a 7-mile non-motorized trail connecting the southern tip of the Sawtooth Trail up to Watson Lake and the Tahoe Rim Trail. Construction was completed in fall of 2018. A huge thanks to the National Forest Foundation and REI for making this possible

Local Trail Association
Traditionally Indigenous Territory
More Stats for Big Chief Trail (Upper Section) mountain bike trail trail
  • Altitude change
    -742 ft
  • Altitude min
    7,109 ft
  • Altitude max
    7,860 ft
  • Altitude start
    7,853 ft
  • Altitude end
    7,110 ft
  • Grade
    -6.4%
  • Grade max
    -27.6%
  • Grade min
    8.1%
  • Distance climb
    1,037 ft
  • Distance down
    2 miles
  • Distance flat
    302 ft
  • Avg time
    00:20:00
  • Avg reverse time
    00:45:21
  • view trail stats
Status:
on Nov 24, 2021
Dry
Avg: 4.55 (17 votes)

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Trail Conditions
  • Unknown
  • Snow Groomed
  • Snow Packed
  • Snow Covered
  • Snow Cover Inadequate
  • Freeze/thaw Cycle
  • Icy
  • Prevalent Mud
  • Wet
  • Variable
  • Ideal
  • Dry
  • Very Dry
Trail Flow (Ridden Direction)
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The colour categories are based on what percentage of riders are riding a trail in its intended direction.
  • > 96%
  • > 90%
  • > 80%
  • > 70%
  • > 50%
  • < 50%
  • bi-directional trail
  • no data
Trail Last Ridden
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  • < 2 days
  • < 1 week
  • < 2 weeks
  • < 1 month
  • < 6 months
  • > 6 months
Trail Ridden Direction
The intended direction a trail should be ridden.
  • Downhill Only
  • Downhill Primary
  • Both Directions
  • Uphill Primary
  • Uphill Only
  • One Direction
Contribute Details
Colors indicate trail is missing specified detail.
  • Description
  • Photos
  • Description & Photos
  • Videos
Trail Popularity ?
Trailforks scans ridelogs to determine which trails are ridden the most in the last 9 months. Trails are compared with nearby trails in the same city region with a possible 25 colour shades. Think of this as a heatmap, more rides = more kinetic energy = warmer colors.
  • most popular
  • popular
  • less popular
  • not popular
ATV/ORV/OHV Filter
Max Vehicle Width
inches

Radar Time
x Activity Recordings
Trailforks users anonymized public ridelogs from the past 6 months.
  • mountain biking recent
  • mountain biking (>6 month)
  • hiking (1 year)
  • moto (1 year)
Activity Recordings
Trailforks users anonymized public skilogs from the past 12 months.
  • Downhill Ski
  • Backcountry Ski
  • Nordic Ski
Jump Magnitude Heatmap
Heatmap of where riders jump on trails. Zoom in to see individual jumps, click circles to view jump details.
Trails Deemphasized
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      Directions to big-chief-trail-upper-section trailhead (39.229500, -120.145840)
      update trails status or condition

      Big Chief Trail... Trail Reports

      statusdatedescription
      Nov 24, 2021 @ 5:41pm
      Nov 24, 2021
      I just finished clearing all the trees that fell during the October storm. Whole trail is clear
      Nov 24, 2021 @ 5:39pm
      Nov 24, 2021
      Sep 27, 2021 @ 12:34pm
      Sep 27, 2021
      12" diameter tree down on lower section. still fun though.
      Jul 12, 2021 @ 8:29pm
      Jul 12, 2021
      Dry. Gravelly loose, in spots, like normal
      May 30, 2021 @ 1:22pm
      May 30, 2021
      No trees in the way, smooth sailing!
      view all reports »

      Recent Ridelog Activity on Trail

      Past Week
      • 5 rides
      • 21 miles avg distance
      6 Months
      • 283 rides
      • 19 miles avg distance
      All
      • 771 rides
      •  

      Photos

      more »
      52 |
      Jun 23, 2021 @ 9:39pm
      Jun 23, 2021
      61 |
      May 30, 2021 @ 8:00pm
      May 30, 2021
      84 |
      Jan 1, 2021 @ 6:49pm
      Jan 1, 2021
      161 |
      Oct 6, 2020 @ 9:11pm
      Oct 6, 2020

      Routes with this trail

      more »
      titleratingdistance
      Tahoe rim trail
      33 miles
      Dieter And Dave's
      15 miles
      Sawtooth and Big Chief from Truckee
      25 miles
      Brockway Summit to Big Chief
      20 miles

      11 Reviews & Comments

      • + 0
      gasman1 (Nov 2, 2018 at 18:09)
       this section will be really nice next spring. loose and dusty now. Really well built. nice rock work, a few little jumps, couple of scetchy rock drops mid trail though, beware!
      [Reply]
      • + 1
      WillieB (Nov 14, 2018 at 10:55)
       I would argue that this trail should be broken into two sections, as the difficulty and feel of each is not the same. The upper portion above the road is rolling and relatively mellow -it feels more like a connector, while the lower bit (middle big chief) is quite technical and loaded with gnarly rocks.
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      Matiasek (Jun 21, 2019 at 13:32)
       Anyone know if this is snow free yet? Thanks!
      [Reply]
      • + 2
      sammybikes916 (Jun 21, 2019 at 18:05)
       all intel I've heard is that it's good to go. heading up on Sunday if you want to join.
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      douglasdevore (Jun 21, 2019 at 21:19)
       Rode it today. Almost completely snow free except for one small section. A couple a large downed trees as well. Otherwise the ride was excellent!
      [Reply]
      • + 1
      Mockg (Jun 26, 2019 at 0:12)
       This trail wouldn't be fun to ride up, and impossible to in some sections - best to take the road around. You'll be happy going downhill though, unless you're still a bit green as this trail is fast and loose.
      [Reply]
      • + 1
      whoisadam (Aug 14, 2019 at 15:31)
       Upper chief was amazing, good grade so not too pedally, fun rock obstacles, drops, very entertaining. The lower half for my taste was alright, there were some brilliant sections on the (lower section) but as a whole a bit too pedally for my taste and just lots of loose rocks and shell that you pedal through. Definitely worth a go, they put a lot of work into this trail.
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      tahoe-mic (Jul 3, 2020 at 10:08)
       Fun trail, good flow, some really cool sections and a view to die for. Great condition.
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      ashort (Oct 7, 2020 at 19:49)
       Such a fun trail. Lots of tech/chunky sections and small drops.
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      CoachTWM (Oct 10, 2020 at 10:42)
       This is one of the outlier trails for this region...while most trend toward XC Upper Big Chief is pure rip-roaring fun! It’s worth pedaling your long travel bike to the trailhead just so you can get the most out of the trail.
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      Ttruts (Aug 2, 2021 at 16:14)
       Awesome downhill ripper, loose and fast. Has the flow and the grade that the lower section doesn't
      [Reply]

      Post a Comment



      Videos

      more »
      youtuber Best Trail in Tahoe - Big Chief Trail -...
      15:16 | 779 | Jan 3, 2020 , Truckee
      youtuber Mountain biking Big Chief trail (Lower...
      12:29 | 410 | Oct 20, 2019 , Truckee
      youtuber Big Chief Trail 2019 (Truckee, CA) Mountain Biking
      15:16 | 619 | Aug 4, 2019 , Truckee
      Big Chief / Truckee | Lake Tahoe / MTB / 4K
      28:28 | 25 | Sep 23, 2021 , Truckee
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