Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
890.00 ft (271.27 m)
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
6.50 mi (10.46 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Ballardini Ranch-Timberline Connector Trail is the most challenging, and most scenic, of the trail centered around the Ballardini Ranch Trailhead. Following the path of the much more gentle Loop Trails, The Ballardini Ranch-Timberline Trail leaves the Upper Loop Trail at its western edge and begins climbing a series of switchbacks, gaining more and more elevation into the foothills and canyons of southwestern Reno.

This single-track trail runs between the Ballardini Ranch Trailhead and the northern end of Timberline Drive and the Thomas Creek Trailhead (beginning of the Rim To Reno Trail). Over the course of the hike, the trail traces the canyons and foothills where Reno butts up against the Sierra Nevadas. The trail enters National Forest land and follows a route on the slope with views of the entire valley, eventually entering the top of the Arrowcreek housing development and joining a rough jeep track that runs the rest of the way to Timberline Drive.

While the trail crosses several foothills, it does not actually climb to the peak of any. All are accessible, but require some off-trail bushwhacking. With no obvious end point, this route is good for going your desired distance and then returning. The best views of the valley come near the southern end of the trail, just before it joins with the jeep road, at which point the view of the city unobstructed from the downtown casinos to Geiger Grade.

This trail is challenging and sees a good amount of hikers, trail runners, and mountain bikers. Dogs are permitted on a leash.

There is no water and rarely any shade, however there are covered picnic benches and a vault toilet at the Ballardini Ranch and Thomas Creek trailheads.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Spring
Summer
Fall

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

None

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

City views. Mountain views. Opportunity for mountaineering adventures.

Cons

Very little shade.

Trailhead Elevation

4,830.00 ft (1,472.18 m)

Highest point

5,500.00 ft (1,676.40 m)

Features

Vault toilet
Big vistas
Family friendly

Typically multi-day

No

Suitable for

Biking
Horseback

Permit required

No

Location

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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