tahoe snowshoeing trip details
Wahoo! We're so pumped you're registered for this one-of-a-kind adventure, snowshoeing to the Sierra Club's backcountry hotspot, the Bradley Hut. You'll find most of the info you need to prepare for your trip on this page. We'll email you the week before the trip with final details about our meeting spot, carpools, and bios from the other rad ladies who'll be joining you.
This is the only Trail Mavens trip that features indoor sleeping! On Friday night, we'll stay at a hotel in Auburn, CA (this gets us close enough to hit the trailhead bright and early Saturday morning).
On Saturday, we'll sleep in the Sierra Club's Bradley Hut, nestled between Alpine Meadows and Squaw Valley. The cabin is rustic, featuring a few indoor picnic tables, counter space for cooking, a solar-powered lightbulb, and (most importantly) an indoor wood stove to heat the space. We'll all sleep on the floor in the loft space at the top of the A-frame. There's a wooden outhouse about thirty feet away from the hut, so you won't need to poop or pee outdoors...unless you want to.
Breakfast/lunch/dinner on Saturday and breakfast on Sunday will be provided. The group will share in cooking and cleanup responsibilities.
We’ll eat tasty hot meals for breakfast and dinner. Each Maven will create her own ‘snack bag’ at the start of the trip, with PB&Js, dried fruit, nuts, chocolate, jerky, granola bars, etc. To keep our energy up, we’ll snack throughout the day on trail, rather than having a single lunch meal. We’ll have more than enough snacks for you (think: bars, nuts, dried fruit, jerky for meat eaters) but if you’ve got any favorite trail treats, feel free to bring them.
We'll stop for dinner en route to Auburn at Whole Foods on Friday night, and celebrate with lunch out on Sunday. Please bring cash for those meals!
On Saturday, we'll snowshoe from our trailhead to the Bradley Hut with full packs on, roughly five miles with 1500' of gradual elevation gain. After arriving at the Bradley Hut, we'll drop off our stuff and explore the surrounding area. Total distance: 7-8 miles.
On Sunday, we’ll return to our trailhead via the same route, this time going mostly downhill. Total distance: 5 miles.
*Guides reserve the option to modify trip itinerary as necessary due to weather, injury, illness, or other unforeseen incidents.
95% of snowshoeing is just like walking. If you want to get a head start on your learning curve, check out this two minute video on snowshoe best practices:
Each Trail Maven should plan on bringing:
- Sunscreen/sunglasses/lip balm
- Health insurance card & ID
- Tampons/pads as needed
- Toothbrush/mini toothpaste
- Personal medications
- Glasses/contacts with solution
- A pen
- (Trail Mavens alumnae only): previous Field Notes
- Optional: lightweight backpacking pillow, earplugs, camera, gaiters, bandana or Buff to keep sun off your neck, packable backpack to use while hiking
- A sense of adventure
- Sleeping bag rated at 30° or colder*
- Sleeping pad*
- Headlamp with fresh batteries*
- 50L backpack (or larger) with rain fly*
- Sleeping bag liner (if borrowing Trail Mavens sleeping bag)
- Personal clothing (see below)
- Waterproof hiking boots
- Lightweight slippers or Crocs for hanging out in the cabin
- Water bottles and/or hydration bladder with a minimum 2L capacity
*Asterisked items will be provided for those women who indicated they needed them during registration.
SHARED ITEMS, PROVIDED BY TRAIL MAVENS: Snowshoes, poles, food, stoves, fuel, cookware, utensils, water purifier, and basic First Aid.
WHAT TO LEAVE BEHIND: Toiletries and personal effects other than a toothbrush, toothpaste, a small sunscreen bottle, and personal medication. No need for face wash, deodorant, or shampoo for an overnight!
This trip is a great opportunity to practice your minimalist packing skills! We recommend the following:
- Snow pants & snow jacket
- Warm hat & gloves
- Fleece or down jacket
- 1-2 pairs leggings/long underwear
- 1-2 long-sleeved layers
- Two pairs thick wool/synthetic socks (one pair on your feet, one pair in your bag)
- Two pairs underwear (one on your body, one pair in your bag)
- Two tees (one to hike in, one for sleeping)
You'll be wearing most of your clothes while hiking, but you'll want another clean layer (tee + bottoms) reserved to change into when we arrive at our cabin. Please use your own judgement when packing: if you’re always cold, pack heavier extra layers. Keep an eye on the weather forecast linked below!
Click here for the Tahoe weather forecast as we approach our trip! For those not from Northern California, note that Tahoe can fluctuate from below-freezing to warm and sunny in the winter.
Leave No Trace
Trail Mavens is committed to following and teaching Leave No Trace principles. To get you started, watch this video on Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics from the National Parks Service. We'll cover this material again on our trip!
Trail Mavens often enjoy wine or whiskey together in the evenings. Participation in drinking is welcome but of course not mandatory. We ask that Trail Mavens leave recreational drugs at home. If you’re a smoker, please be respectful and partake in a manner that doesn’t bother other group members, and adheres to Leave No Trace principles.
This is an internet-free weekend! If you’d like to share your pics on social media, go for it, but only after we get back home. Then, feel free to go crazy tagging @trailmavens on Instagram or Twitter.
Trail Mavens provides its adventurers with $800-1000 of fantastic backpacking gear. Here are a couple tips on how to keep gear in fantastic condition:
Our pads are inflatable, meaning they’re a) quite comfortable and b) can pop if they meet something sharp. Be sure to unpack, inflate, deflate, and pack your pad away from anything pokey.
Make sure to remove all food, trash, and scented items from your pack as soon as we arrive at our cabin.