While hiking in Lake Tahoe, don’t be surprised when you come across the sound of rushing water. This just means that you’re in close proximity to one of the many beautiful Lake Tahoe waterfalls! It’s definitely worth your time to check out these magical waterfalls when you’re here visiting the Lake Tahoe area. Read on to find out more information about the Lake Tahoe waterfalls you won’t want to miss on your next visit.
Glen Alpine Falls
Glen Alpine Falls is a crowd favorite in Lake Tahoe. With little effort, you’ll easily be able to view this gorgeous waterfall. Glen Alpine Falls is a large and wide waterfall that is located almost right alongside the road. From where the signs at this destination tell you where to park, this waterfall is literally a two-minute walk from your car! This is an ideal location if you’re not looking to break a sweat or get a workout in on your day of sightseeing. Simply hop out of your car and enjoy the beautiful scenery of Glen Alpine Falls.
- Glen Alpine Falls is 12 miles from the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
- Must purchase a day or overnight permit before you get to the Glen Alpine Trailhead
- Location: 1580 Glen Alpine Rd, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150
Eagle Falls is also a very popular waterfall in Lake Tahoe as it has two separate sets of falls to it! The Upper Eagle Falls is around 50 feet high and is located about ¼ mile from the Eagle Falls Trailhead and is part of the Desolation Wilderness, while the Lower Eagle Falls flows down roughly 150 feet and is located in the Emerald Bay State Park. With the Upper Eagle Falls being part of the Desolation Wilderness, you’ll need to purchase a permit before hitting that trail, unlike Lower Eagle Falls. Both waterfalls are breathtaking and are perfect trails for families with younger kids. Remember to be careful, take lots of pictures, and enjoy the views!
- Eagle Falls is 14 miles from the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
- $5 parking fee at the Eagle Falls Trailhead
- Location: 138 Emerald Bay Rd, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150
Galena Creek Falls
Looking into planning a day trip while you’re staying in Lake Tahoe? Galena Creek Falls would make the perfect day trip for you as it’s only about an hour’s drive from the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel! Galena Falls is a beautiful waterfall found on the Galena Falls Trail. This 4.7-mile long trail is used for hiking, nature trips, and bird watching. Galena Falls Trail is great for hikers of all skill levels, so be sure to bring your family along! The Galena Creek Falls is the perfect reward to enjoy and view once your hike is completed. Be sure to check out What to Pack for an Adventurous Hike Around Lake Tahoe before you hit the road for your adventure!
- Galena Creek Falls is 40 miles from the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
- Dogs are allowed but be sure to keep them on a leash
- Location: Tahoe Rim Trail, Reno, NV 89511
Cascade Falls is another fan favorite waterfall that is located in Lake Tahoe. With only being a 1.4-mile trail, this hike has a lot to offer. The Cascade Falls Trail leads you through the forest and over stone steps within the Emerald Lake State Park and straight to the enchanting waterfall. This waterfall drops more than 65 feet down with water rushing over the large rocks and boulders. These large rocks help the waterfall stand out so you can see it for miles! This is a quick hike to a beautiful destination so be sure to slip on your hiking shoes and watch out for rocks!
- Cascade Falls is 13 miles from the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
- Starts at the Bayview Trailhead on the backside of Bayview Campground
- Location: Cascade Falls Trail, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150
Another beautiful and moderate-level waterfall to hike to in Lake Tahoe is Hawley Falls. Hawley Falls can be explored on the Hawley Grade Trail, a trail that is 4.2 miles long and is part of the El Dorado National Forest. This short 20-foot drop from the Upper Truckee River is one that you’ll want to check out early in the summer as the water begins to trickle out once the summer progresses. Before setting foot on this trail to explore Hawley Falls, check out some Tips for Planning the Perfect Hike in Lake Tahoe to ensure that this hike is a great experience and a day that you’ll remember forever!
- Hawley Falls is 14 miles from the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
- The trails to the falls is primarily used for hiking, running, and mountain biking
- Location: Hawley Grade Trail, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150
Looking to challenge yourself? Horsetail Falls is a waterfall that you will definitely have to put in some work in order to see the amazing views. The hike to the base of the waterfall is at about a moderate level, but if you really want to make the most out of your hike, you can continue up the left side of the waterfall where there are difficult and challenging rock formations to maneuver. The hike to the base of the waterfall and back will take you approximately 2 hours, depending on how fast of a hiker you are, while if you choose to challenge yourself up the side of the waterfall, you will more than likely double your time. The trip to the falls is about a 3.8-mile hike, with an extra 800 feet if you choose to endure the added climb. Push yourself to your limits and explore the beauty of Horsetail Falls!
- Horsetail Falls is 20 miles from the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
- Requires a $5 self-registered parking permit
- Location: Horsetail Falls, California 95735
Shirley Canyon Falls
Shirley Canyon Falls is another waterfall near Lake Tahoe that is known for its challenging trail and endless natural beauty. This hike is approximately 5 miles long and is estimated to be about a 3-hour hike. On this trail, keep the flowing creek on your right and you’ll be sure to see the gorgeous falls as you make your way up the creek. Along with the rushing water, you’ll come across thriving greenery and blooming wildflowers that make the falls look even more beautiful. Be sure to read any yellow or orange poles that you come across while exploring these falls as they will point you in the direction of the trail. Pack your bag and plan a day trip with your hiking buddy to explore beautiful Shirley Canyon Falls!
- Shirley Canyon Falls is 40 miles from the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
- There is a tram that hikers can use on the trail in the summer (check to see if it is open before you plan your hike)
- Location: 1912 Chamonix Pl, Olympic Valley, CA 96146
With now knowing exactly which Tahoe waterfalls you want to explore, we are sure that you are stoked and are ready to start planning your hike at Lake Tahoe! When exploring these waterfalls, it is important to learn How To Handle Lake Tahoe’s High Altitude Like A Pro so you don’t experience any mountain sickness. Nobody wants to experience that! Remember, pack the essentials, drink lots of water, and book your stay today so you can enjoy these breathtaking waterfalls!