Ralston Peak (17E41) is a hiking trail in El Dorado County, California. It is within Desolation Wilderness. It is 0.6 miles long and begins at 8,851 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 1.1 miles with a total elevation gain of 376 feet. The trail ends near Ralston Peak (elevation 9,209 feet).
Ralston Peak (17E41) Professional Reviews and Guides
"Incredible views of a dozen glacial lakes and prominent peaks from a vista point 1,100 feet above Desolation Valley are yours to enjoy as you begin ascending the lateral moraine forming Pyramid Creek’s canyon. The trail climbs at a consistent rate for the first third of the hike then tests your lungs and legs for just over a mile before resuming a more reasonable slope to the summit.A few switchbacks send you traversing through the Jeffrey pines and white firs that shade you at the outset on the flank of this ice-carved chunk of rock. A beautiful vista point lies less than 0.3 mile from the trailhead. As you stand in this open, sandy spot, Pyramid Creek’s canyon spreads out in front of you like a gaping tear in the mountain."
--Jordan Summers, Five-Star Trails: Lake Tahoe: 40 Unforgettable Hikes in the Central Sierra Nevada (Menasha Ridge Press).
"Ralston Peak rises immediately from the South Fork of the American River canyon. The peak sits on the southern edge of Desolation Valley Wilderness Area with a commanding view of Lake Aloha, Echo Lake, Lake Tahoe, Pyramid Peak, Price Peak, Jacks Peak, Dicks Peak, Mount Tallac, and the numerous lakes and peaks in the wilderness area. This is a great intermediate trip in an outstanding setting."
--Paul Richins, 50 Classic Backcountry Ski & Snowboard Summits in California (The Mountaineers Books).
"Although the climb is steady and stiff, where else in the Tahoe Basin can you achieve such a grand view with only a 3-mile hike? Most hikers favor the route to Ralston Peak from Echo Lakes, which is a mile longer via the water taxi (3.5 miles longer without) but requires 800 fewer feet of elevation gain. This being the case, you may not have to share the serenity of the route described below with too many other hikers."
--Mike White, Top Trails Lake Tahoe (Wilderness Press).
"Although the climb is steady and stiff, where else in the Tahoe Basin can you achieve such a lofty view with only a 3-mile hike in? Most hikers seem to favor the route to Ralston Peak from Echo Lakes, which is a mile longer via the water taxi (3.5 miles longer without) but requires 800 less feet of elevation gain. With this being the case, you may not have to share the serenity of the route described below with too many other hikers."
--Mike White, Afoot & Afield: Tahoe-Reno: 201 Spectacular Outings in the Lake Tahoe Region (Wilderness Press).
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