This section of the Tahoe Rim Trail can be thought of as two distinctly different trails due primarily to the geology. The southern section starts at SR-207 (Kingsbury Grade) and follows an undulating climb through granite soils, large rounded rocks, and mature pine forests. This section is technical and rewards good bike handling skills.
The northern section starts at Spooner Summit on US-50 and steadily climbs through angular talus and smaller pine trees to an expansive meadow that encompass the highest elevations of the trail. The meadow affords nearly perfect views of the entire lake and the surrounding mountains. This section of trail is not technical, but the climb is relentless. The transition between the two sections of trail is fairly distinct about a quarter mile south of the meadow.
At the highest point of the trail is a bench...like a park bench, except that it was handmade from local timber and placed facing Lake Tahoe in honor of an individual who frequented the area. As a result, these sections of trail are often called "Kingsbury bench" for the section from Kingsbury to the bench or "Spooner Bench" for the section from Spooner Summit to the bench.
Access for the northern trailhead is a couple hundred feet east of Spooner Summit in a parking area on the south side of US-50.
Access to the southern trailhead is more complicated. The trailhead is on the north side of the TRT crossing of Kingsbury Grade (SR-207), however, there is no parking immediately available to start the trail from that point. One option is to park on Buchanan Rd just west of the TRT intersection and ride the few hundred feet to the trailhead. However most riders skip the first 1.5 miles of the TRT and drive to the parking area at the end of the pavement on North Benjamin Dr. (which technically morphs into Andria Dr.). There a USFS/TRTA kiosk and trail map are available at a TRT spur on the west side of the road.
More Stats for TRT: Kingsbury to Spooner mountain bike trail
Altitude change-25 ft
Altitude min7,114 ft
Altitude max8,815 ft
Altitude start7,139 ft
Altitude end7,114 ft
Distance climb6 miles
Distance down6 miles
Distance flat3 miles
Avg reverse time01:41:20
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TRT: Kingsbury... Trail Reports
Aug 26, 2017 @ 3:00pmAug 26, 2017
|All clear and spectacular from Spooner to the Bench. Downed trees have been cleared.|
Jul 5, 2017 @ 3:15pmJul 5, 2017
|From Spooner, first 4.5 miles clear with great conditions, 1 large downed tree. Last 1/4 mile before lakeview ridge, several dismounts for snow,...|
Jun 25, 2017 @ 3:05pmJun 25, 2017
|There's still large snow patches about 5 miles from North Benjamin trailhead, near the Sierra Canyon junction. Multiple trees are down before...|
Mar 22, 2017 @ 4:55pmMar 22, 2017
Routes with this trail
|Spooner to Stateline||20 miles|
|pass to pints||17 miles|
|Tahoe Rim Trail Bike Packing Trip||62 miles|
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