Tahoe Rim Trail Association 


To maintain and enhance the Tahoe Rim Trail system, practice and inspire stewardship and promote access to the beauty of the Lake Tahoe region.

History of the Association

The Tahoe Rim Trail Association is a volunteer, non-profit 501(C)(3) organization established in 1981 to plan, construct, and maintain the Tahoe Rim Trail. 

While atop a peak in the Tahoe Basin in 1977, Glen Hampton, a US Forest Service Officer, dreamed of a trail connecting the beautiful mountains surrounding Lake Tahoe. At the time, only 30 percent of all forest service land in the area had developed trail systems. For the next few years, Hampton, and avid hiker, set about exploring the Lake Tahoe Basin on his time off to identify possible trail routes. His research included investigating aged pathways used by early pioneers, Basque Shepherds, and the Washoe People. in 1981, the Tahoe Rim Trail Association was founded, and in 1984, construction of the Tahoe Rim Trail began.

About the Trail

This 165-mile, twenty-four inch, single-track trail is open to hiking, equestrians, and mountain biking (in most areas). The trail encompasses the ridge tops of the Lake Tahoe Basin, crossing six counties, and two states. The Tahoe Rim Trail overlaps with approximately fifty miles of the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail.


The trail exists because of the dreams and dedicated efforts of thousands of volunteers to plan, build, and maintain over 150 miles of trail. Starting in 1984, volunteers constructed the trail during 18 building seasons to complete the initial loop. Their work involves trail construction and maintenance as well as marketing, fundraising, and long range planning. Over 1,000 members contribute financially to sustain the association's work each year. Many volunteers lead trail construction and preservation crews in the summer months, along with guided hikes by trained hike leaders. The continued support and hard work of volunteers will preserve this unique public resource for future generations.