Tree, Poison Flat, Carson Iceberg Lake Tahoe to Mount Whitney: Your Backpacking Guide to the High Sierras Yellow Flower
Departing Lake Tahoe Basin during Winter.
Departing Lake Tahoe Basin through Carson Gap during during Winter.


The Trails



Current Weather Conditions

Weather Notes
Northern High Sierras
Central High Sierras
Southern High Sierras


Gear List
Gettin Started
Testing yourself and your gear
Gear Reviews


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Lake Tahoe Basin

Weather Reports, Forecasts, Road Conditions

High Sierra Nevada Mountain Backcountry Backpacking, Hiker's, and Skiers' Weather Resources





Trail Arts

The art of walking


Physical Preperation


Trail Skills

The trail
Off the trail
Camp skills





Photo Catagories
Trail Stories
Trail Culture
News and Science


Terms and Conditions of Use

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Southern Sierra
Lake Tahoe Basin
Region Weather

Lake Tahoe Basin
Weather Map

Carson Pass Region Weather Gear

South Lake Tahoe
Backpacker Weather Resources


This weather page is concerned with providing weather information to hikers and backpackers on or near the Pacific Crest and Tahoe to Yosemite Trail routes through Desolation Wilderness and Meiss Roadless Area within the Lake Tahoe Basin.

Thus this weather page covers the Western and Southern portions of the Lake Tahoe Basin

Besides the weather information we will find links to the maps, miles, resupply, permit, and elevations information for the PCT and TYT here, and along both these trails to our South.

This is the Northern Limit of the Tahoe to Whitney Trail Guide.


Arrrg...Pages under Construction...

Meeks Bay             Echo Summit              South Upper Truckee
South Lake Tahoe Weather Page
Road Conditions
Reporting Stations
Snow Sensors

Tahoe Basin
Reporting Stations
on a
Topo Hiking Map


Snow Cover,
Weather Probability,
Trail Guide

7 Day Rain Forecasts
Current Satellite View

Forecasts, Road Conditions,
Web Cams

Lake Tahoe Region Forecast

Lake Tahoe region Weather Forecast Link.

Road Conditions


Tahoe Basin Region Highways

Highway 80

Highway 89

Highway 50

Highway 88


Cal Trans Road Conditions Search


Cal Trans Road Conditions Phone Line


Eyes on Tahoe Basin

Web Cams

Sierra at Tahoe web cams Highway 50

Alpine Meadows Ski Resort web cams Highway 89


Web Cams

Lake Tahoe web cams



NWS 7 day
South Lake Tahoe Region
In-Depth Weather Forecast

7 Day Graphical Interface Forecast
National Weather Service Graphical Weather Observation and Forecast Tool for High Sierra Backpackers.

Use this tool to investigate all aspects of the 7 Day High Sierra Forecasts.

South Sierra Graphical Forecast Tool


Sierra Nevada Mountain Backpacker
Rain, Precipitation, and Radar
Weather Imagery


Current to 7 Day
High Sierra Precipitation Forecast
Seven day precipitation forecast covering the Sierra Nevada for backpackers, fishermen, hunters and hikers.

Northern Sierra Nevada
Radar Imagery

Link to Northern Sierra Nevada Weather Radar out of Reno.


All Precipitation Information           National Radar Map

Northern Sierra Nevada
Local and Regional Satellite Views
Weather Imagery



Current Sierra Nevada Satellite Imagery High Sierra satellite views for backpackers, hiker, hunters, and fishermen.

North Pacific and Sierra Nevada Satellite ImageryLink to Weather Sattelite Imagery.
List of NWS Satellites           List of NOAA Satelittes


Reporting Stations
Snow Sensors


Linked MAPS

Southwest Lake Tahoe Station List

The first link below bring you to an expansive map of Northern California Real-Time reporting stations.

REAL TIME TEMPS & PRECIP & SNOW DEPTH North California Mesowest real time weather reporting stations.

The link below, to California State reporting station brings you to a lousy map interface, but it works...


California Department of Water Resources real time weather reporting stations.

All Federal
Snotel Stations
in California

Desolation Wilderness Backpacking Map

Meiss Country Roadless Area Backpacking Map

South Lake Tahoe
weather reporting stations
Laid out on a hiking map.


South Lake Tahoe reporting stations laid out on a hiking map. Ca. reporting stations located by NAD 27.

#1> RUBICON #2

Location: Near Desolation Wilderness between Stony Ridge Lake and Highway 89 on the East side of Rubicon Peak. Topo Map.

Site Information and Reports from RUBICON 2  

Daily Report from RUBICON #2

Latitude: 38 deg 59’

Longitude: -120 deg 7’

Elevation: 7689 feet


#2> Fallen Leaf

Location: Just North of Camp Richardson on Highway 89. Topo Map.

Site Information and Reports from Fallen Leaf

Daily Report from Fallen Leaf

Latitude: 38 deg 56'

Longitude: -120 deg 3'

Elevation: 6236 feet



Location: North of Upper Echo Lake, Desolation Wilderness. Topo Map.

Site Information and Reports from ECHO PEAK

Daily Report from ECHO PEAK

Latitude: 38 deg 50'

Longitude: -120 deg 4'

Elevation: 7670 feet


Temperature & Wind infomation

Echo Summit Highway 50

Meyers: Highway 50 & 89

Real Time Ground Reporting Stations

Planning our gear selection for our hike South from Lake Tahoe we have referred to a reasonable selection of real-time ground reporting stations that inform about temp, wind, rain, snow, and humidity.

This real-time data gives us both current and historical knowledge of the range of temperatures we can expect to experience at various points down the trail.

This information establishes our gear selection range.


Weather Resources


snow cover

snow probability

weather & temp predictions

Snow cover on the Sierra Nevada graphical interface.

Sierra Nevada snow storm and snowfall probability forecasts.

Predictions of Sierra Nevada Weather Conditions.
Fall, Winter, and Spring. Fall, Winter, and Spring. Good for Summer hot & cold trends.

Trail Guide Information


This Weather Page, like the trail guide it is a part of, covers the High Sierra Trails from Meeks Bay along the Western Shore of Lake Tahoe down to the Mount Whitney Portal.

Therefore the trail guide begins in Desolation Wilderness and passes South through the Meiss Country Roadless Area before exiting the Lake Tahoe Basin just a bit North of Carson Pass.

National Forests around Lake Tahoe between Highway 89, 50, and 88

All land that drains into Lake Tahoe is defined as part of the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit. For the purposes of this trail guide the pertinent zones within the LTBMU are Desolation Wilderness and Meiss Country Roadless Area.

Desolation Wilderness is the busiest wilderness in the country. Permits may be difficult to obtain during the high Summer backpacking season. Meiss Country requires no permits, though these areas are a stone's throw from each other.

Trail Guide Section Index


Desolation Wilderness Map Index

Meiss Country Map Index

Miles & Elevations

Desolation Wilderness

Meiss Country

Trail Guide Maps
Click Red Dots

Desolation Wilderness

Meiss Country

South Lake Tahoe
Reporting Stations
on a
Hiking Map

High Sierra Nevada
Hiker's Weather Resources

Trail Guide Construction Note: As of June 2012 I am reworking these long-static draft High Sierra Weather Pages. Have you any good weather information you want to see up here? Email me.

North: NORTHERN SIERRA WEATHER                                       South: CARSON PASS

Ready for the Range of Weather
in the
Range of Light?
Basic Facts
Basic High Sierra
for the

The Sierra Crest is noted for having the capacity to produce four seasons of weather during a single Summer Day.

Rain, snow, hail, fog, lightening, and a bit of sunshine can all happen in quick sequence.

The High Sierras are noted for rapid changes in weather and temperature, and the sudden appearance of harsh weather trends. You may experience anything from intense heat to bitterly cold Summer snow storms. Or you may not.

In any case, weather must be considered and proper gear preparations made to deal with the range of weather BEFORE entering the High Sierras.

Long Distance Backpackers who were on the High Sierra Crest in early August of 2009 (and July of 2015) experienced just such a series of Summer Snow Storms.

Temperatures dropped to the high teens and low twenties, snow and hail fell which partially obscured the trails, and all of those who entertained the misconception that the Sierras only have fine weather during the Summertime were bitterly disappointed. Luckily for the many backcountry travelers who were not properly prepared, those storms blew apart, rather than consolidated and deepened.

(The 2015 storms had their way)

Weather considerations should guide your gear selection.

Weather Preparations for Backcountry Travel

All Seasons

Tahoe to Whitney
High Sierra Weather Resources

Next, check the National Weather Service Satellites, Maps, and Forecasts

(on the TW Weather page above)

The NWS Satellites will give you an orbital view of potiential storm activity far off the coast of California. Combined with the NWS Maps and Forecasts, you can anticipate weather. Note: especially check the 28km infrared and water vapor animations.

Check the National Weather Service Maps

(on the TW Weather page above)

NWS Maps Note: Especially Check the 24 to 48 Hour fronts and Precipitation Maps.

Consult the National Weather Service Home Page

The National Weather Service Home Page displays large and small scale weather warnings which may pertain to your High Sierra backpacking plans.

All these resources, and more, are found on the Tahoe to Whitney Complete Highe Sierra Weather resources page.


Backpacker Forums

Have a great Sierra Nevada route or trip to relate?

Post it on

Anyone can post up comments and questions in existing topics posted on the High Sierra Backpacking Trails Forums or in the High Sierra Backpacking Topics Forums.
But only members can post up new topics, and can post images and maps with their posts.

Become a Member

If you have comments about weather conditions in the Lake Tahoe Basin, this is the place to post up:
Desolation Wilderness Weather

North: NORTHERN SIERRA WEATHER                                       South: CARSON PASS

Alex Wierbinski

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Frosted Backpack

Backpacking Lake Tahoe to Mount Whitney

Your guide to the High Sierra Crest, including the Tahoe to Yosemite, Pacific Crest, and John Muir Trails

Bear at Silver King Creek, Carson-Iceberg Wilderness
© Lake Tahoe to Mount Whitney: Crown Jewel of the Pacific Crest Trail