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Snowshoeing at Chickadee Ridge

Last updated: August 2023

Name: Snowshoeing at Chickadee Ridge

Location: Incline Village

Best Time of Year: Spring


On a snowy trail high in the Mt. Rose Wilderness, fulfill your Snow White fantasies with some  friendly mountain chickadees that will eat right out of your hand! Grab your snowshoes and be rewarded with a snowy spring experience unlike any other.


What Is It?

Chickadee Ridge is a three-mile trail located near Incline Village in the Desolation Wilderness area of Mt. Rose. The trail offers a great snowshoeing adventure for visitors of all skill levels. But ‘Chickadee’ isn’t just part of the trail’s name – adventurers can say hello to these friendly little birds by offering them birdseed!

Where Can I Find It?

Chickadee Ridge is located 1.2 miles southwest of Mt. Rose Summit off the Mt. Rose Highway at the junction of the highway and Ophir Creek. Visitors can park along the side of the highway to access the trailhead, which begins at a dense forest area. Follow the established trail up to the elevated area, Chickadee Ridge, for the lookout over the lake.


Insider Tips

  • Head out to the trail early in the morning or on weekdays to beat crowds, and have the chickadees all to yourself!
  • Chickadee Ridge is a dog-friendly trail, so your pup can tag along in the adventures! Just make sure that they are kept on a leash, and don’t scare off the chickadees.
  • While most of the trail is flat enough for sturdy hiking boots, bring snowshoes for areas where snow is piled up a bit higher.

Fun Facts

  • Sunflower seeds are the seed of choice for chickadees, so be sure to pick some up from your local grocery or pet store!
  • Chickadees, specifically the black-capped chickadee that travelers will find at the Ridge, are some of the most human-friendly birds around, tolerating human approach to a much greater degree than other species of birds.
  • The black-capped chickadees that populate Chickadee Ridge are also known as “Cheeseburger birds”. The birds have gained this nickname as they welcome spring with their signature three note whistle, which sounds like they are saying “cheese-bur-ger”.
  • Black-capped chickadees are the most common bird in the Tahoe Basin.


If You Like This, You’ll Love:

Other snowshoe trails around North Lake Tahoe that are perfect for spring bluebird days include:

Find more at GoTahoeNorth.com/treasures