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Hidden Peak

Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe + Northern Sierra, California

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Hidden Peak

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  • Hidden Peak's summit as seen from the upper bench. The ascent route is on the right ridgeline.- Hidden Peak
  • Views of the lake are good motivation to push through to the summit of Hidden Peak. - Hidden Peak
  • Fresh coatings on Hidden Peak.- Hidden Peak
  • Powder, hemlocks, sun, and clouds coverge to create a ethereal atmosphere on Hidden Peak's upper half.- Hidden Peak
  • Mountain hemlock (Tsuga mertensiana) near the summit of Hidden Peak.- Hidden Peak
  • Pow stashes below Hidden Peak's summit.- Hidden Peak
  • Fresh options aplenty on Hidden Peak. - Hidden Peak
  • Steeper glades and tree-lined chutes can be found below and skier's left of the summit. Take care not to get cliffed out by dropping in too early.- Hidden Peak
  • Hidden Peak's well-spaced glades are a good option on storm days. - Hidden Peak
  • Hidden Peak.- Hidden Peak
  • Hidden Peak.- Hidden Peak
  • Hidden Peak.- Hidden Peak
  • The parking pullout for Hidden Peak is differentiated by the erosion barrier on the west side of Highway 89.- Hidden Peak
  • East Shore vantage of the West Shore lineup.- Hidden Peak
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Good storm skiing location. Less popular than nearby peaks.
Cons: 
Steep skinning on the lower half.
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Region:
Lake Tahoe + Northern Sierra, CA
Max slope angle: 
30-45 degrees
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Total Distance: 
3.50 mi (5.63 km)
Trailhead Elevation: 
6,500.00 ft (1,981.20 m)
Vertical descent: 
2,700.00 ft (822.96 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Team

Of the West Shore backcountry lineup, Hidden Peak seems to attract less attention than it’s neighbors, most notably Jake’s Peak. That’s great for the folks skiing Hidden Peak, as the quality of the glade skiing and snow conditions is similar, and there’s some billy-goating terrain to be had up high if you're looking for it. One potential deterrent may be that the descent line is interrupted by a large bench two-thirds of the way up at around 8,200 feet. This makes for a more segmented descent compared to the adjacent peaks and glade shots that feel shorter.

Rising above DL Bliss State Park, Hidden Peak also goes by the name of Bliss Peak. As the more common name suggests, the summit is slightly hidden from view because of the large bench that splits Hidden Peak into two sections. Hidden's lower slopes consist of a steep, 1,500-foot climb through glades of red fir, lodgepole and western white pine. There are some fine short and sweet glade shots in this lower section. Once you reach the bench, Hidden's summit comes into view. This is a great place for a snack and to mind-ski your way through the cliff section below the summit. The upper section is a thousand foot climb to the summit and is most easily navigated to the right of the cliff band up the obvious gradual slopes. Up high you'll find great Lake Tahoe views and the ubiquitous mountain hemlock found near treeline.

For the descent, ski back through the glades taken on the skin up. Alternately, there are some fun variations with steeper terrain features beneath and directly to skier's left of the cliff band. These lead slightly further south and below the bench relative to where you first skinned up (you may have to skin or hike a short distance to reconnect with where you first gained the bench on the way up to get the most out of your turns). If you are looking for expert terrain, there are some interesting descent possibilities to pick your way through if you head south from the summit and along the ridge. Just make sure you know your descent plan and where you’re heading.

Similar to the glades of Rubicon, Hidden Peak is a safer option for storm days. The lower section is sheltered from storm winds.

The most direct parking for Hidden Peak is located in a pullout on the east side of Highway 89 opposite an erosion barrier wall, 0.75 miles north of the entrance road to DL Bliss State Park. To begin your ascent, walk south and across the highway near the end of the erosion barrier wall. The ascent begins in the woods near a grove of incense cedars.

Make sure to check Sierra Avalanche Center's daily winter avalanche bulletin to help inform safe backcountry decision making before venturing out: www.sierraavalanchecenter.org.

Backcountry Safety

Winter backcountry adventures can be dangerous outdoor activities that pose significant risks as conditions affecting safety (i.e. weather, snowpack stability, avalanche hazard) are constantly changing. Prior to engaging in these activities each individual should get the proper training to make safe decisions and be equipped to use avalanche safety resources and tools. Please visit our Backcountry Skiing and Avalanche Safety post to learn more.

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Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(28 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(104 within a 30 mile radius)

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