Planning trip to Tahoe Rim Trail

7:10 p.m. on June 22, 2009 (EDT)
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Two friends and myself are planning to hike the entire Tahoe Rim Trail in mid-August. If anyone has ever done any of this trail and could offer any advise, please do.

Also we are in need of suggestions for exactly what size pack to purchase and what boots would be best. We are driving out from Illinois and plan to complete hike in 10 days. Any advise or wisdom is HIGHLY APPRECIATIVE.

12:06 p.m. on June 23, 2009 (EDT)
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The trail is close enough to "civilization" to not worry about food carrying capacity too much. The weather will be warm enough to carry a very light sleeping bag and to use a tarp. You might not even run into any rain in Aug, though sometimes there are the typical mountain summer afternoon thunderstorms (short, and you dry off quickly). I almost always just toss out a ground cloth and put my pad and bag on the ground cloth. The sky at night is far too beautiful and full of stars to bother with the weight and bother of a tent. You should take a bear canister, though, since the Tahoe bears are starting to learn how to get at food - although, since they have learned how to break into cabins and find the refrigerators and pantries, they are sticking around the "civilized" areas more. Bear bagging still seems to be effective enough in the Tahoe area, and given how close to stores you are, you can always replenish if the bears do get at your bear bag (haven't had that happen yet, though, in the Tahoe area - well, correction, in almost 7 decades in the woods and hills, I have never lost anything to bears anywhere, just marmots, mice, and raccoons).

I get up there fairly often (this coming weekend, I am teaching a land navigation course at Clair Tappaan Lodge, the Sierra Club Lodge at Donner Pass, and in August, will be running a hike during the CTL 75th anniversary celebration). I often just use trail running shoes, since the trails in the area are pretty good, especially the Rim Trail. But I use my leather hiking boots most of the time, particularly when doing some of the more rugged parts of the Rim Trail on the west side of the Lake. It depends a lot on what you are used to wearing. You don't really need a heavy mountaineering boot on those trails.

Ummmm, just noticed your question about what pack and boots "to purchase". It's getting pretty late to purchase a pack and boots now, at the end of June. Mid-Aug is just 6-7 weeks away. You really want those boots to fit well, and you need 40-50 miles at an absolute minimum to be sure they indeed do fit properly and won't cause you blisters. Plus, you want that pack to fit properly. Fit, much more than capacity, should be your concern in both. And for the Rim Trail, or any hike of that distance (and altitude - keep in mind you are going to be at 7000 to 10000 ft elevation with lots of uphill sections, albeit on good trails), a pack that does not fit properly will be miserable, and boots that do not fit correctly will stop your hike in its tracks - literally!

12:28 p.m. on June 24, 2009 (EDT)
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This may be an obvious response, but if you haven't already done so, hit the TRTA site for additional info and resources:

http://www.tahoerimtrail.org/

1:43 p.m. on July 23, 2009 (EDT)
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Thanks for the responses. I have in fact already purchased my pack and boots. Both seem to be great so far. I have got a lot of information off of that website. I have even purchased the Tahoe Rim Trail book by Tim Hauserman. My buddy has purchased the elevation map. It seems we should be alright. I will definitely let you know how it went when we get back at the end of August. Thanks again.

September 2, 2014
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