17 Amazing Trails for Hiking and Running near Reno, NV

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Reno is close to one of the most popular outdoor destinations in America – Lake Tahoe. But you don’t have to drive that far to find spectacular hikes. There are many excellent trails less than 30 minutes away from the city.

And the diversity of routes is excellent too. “The Biggest Little City in the World” has creek hikes, grueling peak climbs, and paved urban paths ranging from short and easy to long and strenuous. There is a trail for everyone here.

Trails near Reno:

  1. Hunter Creek Trail
  2. Mount Rose Trail
  3. Galena Creek Trail
  4. Keystone Canyon Loop (East)
  5. Dry Pond Loop
  6. Brown’s Creek Loop Trail
  7. Ophir Creek Loop from Tahoe Meadows
  8. Ophir Creek Trail to Upper Price Lake
  9. Damonte Ranch Wetland Loop
  10. Tahoe Pyramid Trail: Verdi to Floriston
  11. Cross Peak
  12. Steamboat Ditch Trail from Woodchuck
  13. Caughlin Ranch Trail
  14. Peavine Peak Trail
  15. Evans Canyon to The Nevada “N”
  16. Diamond Peak from Tahoe Meadows
  17. Rim to Reno Loop via Thomas Creek

1. Hunter Creek Trail

  • Highlight: Stunning, top-rated hike with a 30-foot waterfall; hilly and rocky terrain with little shade; very popular with hikers and runners.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 6.4 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 1,240 ft
  • Time to Complete: 3h 20min
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 7 miles (15 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Hunter Creek Trail is one of the best hiking places near Reno. The 6.4-mile trail is popular with hikers, runners, and dog walkers.

It is moderate in difficulty, rising 1,240ft. The rocky path makes this a more challenging trail, too.

The route features a 30ft waterfall at the turnaround point, and there are plenty of wildflowers and wildlife through the forest and canyon areas.

The first part of the trail isn’t shaded, so bring sun protection. And the incline is more challenging than most realize with rugged sections, so wear sturdy shoes too.

Hunter Creek Trail is easy to follow, well-marked, and beautifully scenic; it is great for taking in the stunning views.

Related: 9 Stunning Recreational Lakes near Las Vegas, NV

2. Mount Rose Trail

  • Highlight: Tough climb to the 10,785-foot peak with panoramic views; well-marked, popular trail with a very steep push towards the summit.
  • Type: Reverse Lollipop
  • Trail Length: 10.7 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 2,395 ft
  • Time to Complete: 6h
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 28 miles (35 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Mount Rose Trail is a 10.7-mile climb near Incline Village-Crystal Bay, used for hiking and snowshoeing in colder months.

This trail is difficult; the 2,395ft of elevation gain will knock the wind out of you. Mount Rose is the 3rd tallest peak in Tahoe Basin, so come prepared for a challenge.

The trail passes Galena Creek and lets you get a good glimpse of Galena Falls, and the views from the summit of Mount Rose are stunning, especially of Lake Tahoe.

As many hikers have found out, this trail is VERY windy as you start your ascent towards the summit, making an already challenging hike even harder.

With that said, it’s a well-developed hike and heavily trafficked, which is surprising given its challenges. But this just means it’s even better maintained, which is a plus!

Related: 12 Fantastic Recreational Lakes near Reno, NV

3. Galena Creek Trail

Galena Creek Trail
Photo: Ken LundCC BY 2.0
  • Highlight: Fun, popular hike along the creek with multiple crossings, mostly shaded with charming woods throughout.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 4.7 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 774 ft
  • Time to Complete: 2h 20min
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot (Callahan Rd): Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 18 miles (25 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Galena Creek Trail is one of the most popular creek hikes near Reno. This 4.7-mile trail is mainly used for hiking, running, and mountain biking.

This route is moderate, with 774ft of elevation gain. Yet, more experienced hikers will find it easy because of its short length and maintained paths.

The trail takes you along Galena Creek through a neighborhood and golf course, but there is still plenty of wilderness around.

Many hikers describe this route as calm and tranquil, with the creek burbling the whole way. So, if you don’t mind manicured golf courses, this is the perfect option.

Also, it’s a well-developed and easy-to-follow route, ideal for beginners, solo hikers, and runners.

Related: 12 Best Lakes near Reno

4. Keystone Canyon Loop (East)

Keystone Canyon Loop (East)
Photo: dh RenoCC BY 2.0
  • Highlight: Quiet area with lots of trails and few visitors; hilly and rocky terrain with desert shrubs; great for running and MTBs.
  • Type: Loop
  • Trail Length: 4.8 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 603 ft
  • Time to Complete: 2h 20min
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot (Callahan Rd): Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 3 miles (8 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Keystone Canyon Loop is a 4.8 mile out and back trail near Reno, used primarily for hiking, nature trips, and mountain biking.

This trail is rated as moderate and has 603ft of elevation. The lack of shade and rocky terrain makes it more difficult than it first seems.

The route combines Keystone Canyon, Rabbitman Blast, and Poedunk trails into one loop. But the area has lots of other tracks that sprawl through the desert-like landscape, so you can easily adjust the length of your hike.

The problem with this area is that it has zero shade presenting an extra difficulty on hot days. Water, sun hat, and sunscreen are highly recommended.

The trails in this location are clearly marked, but there are so many of them that it’s best to have GPS or maps, too.

Related: 9 Stunning Recreational Lakes near Las Vegas, NV

5. Dry Pond Loop

  • Highlight: Fantastic hike at any time of the year; very shaded with forests; beautiful flower meadows in spring; great for snowshoeing in winter.
  • Type: Loop
  • Trail Length: 6.5 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 1,174 ft
  • Time to Complete: 3h 20min
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 19 miles (25 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Dry Pond Loop is a 6.5-mile route near Washoe Valley, used mainly by hikers, runners, and birdwatchers.

This trail is moderate, with a 1,174ft elevation gain. It’s heavily wooded throughout most of the hike.

This loop comprises the Upper Thomas Creek Trail and Upper Whites Creek Trail, so you can hear running water throughout most of the hike.

It offers superb views of the Carson Valley, Washoe Lake and takes you through Mt. Rose Wilderness, so there’s plenty of shade.

Just be aware that you could face a dusty trail or a snowy one depending on the time of year. Come prepared to make the most of it!

Related: 12 Fantastic Recreational Lakes near Reno, NV

6. Brown’s Creek Loop Trail

  • Highlight: Charming trail with shaded sections and access to the creek; hilly but not too strenuous; great for MTBs and snowshoeing in winter.
  • Type: Lollipop
  • Trail Length: 4.6 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 997 ft
  • Time to Complete: 2h 20min
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: Opposite the Trailhead: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 20 miles (25 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Brown’s Creek Loop is a 4.6-mile loop trail near Washoe Valley, primarily used for dog walking, mountain biking, and hiking.

This trail is also moderate, with 997ft of elevation gain and rocky paths contributing to this rating.

The route heads around Brown’s Creek and has two crossing points over bridges so you can look down into the beautiful clear water below.

It can get quite busy here, so come early if beating the crowd is important.

There are plenty of shaded spots, with some exposed ones too, and the inclines, declines, and flat areas are evenly spread, so it’s a comfortable hike.

Related: 12 Best Lakes near Reno

7. Ophir Creek Loop from Tahoe Meadows

Ophir Creek Loop from Tahoe Meadows
Photo: Ken LundCC BY 2.0
  • Highlight: Flat and easy, charming trail with pine groves, meadows, and boardwalks; great for running and can be extended.
  • Type: Loop
  • Trail Length: 3.2 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 265 ft
  • Time to Complete: 2h 30min
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Parking: On the Verge: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 30 miles (35 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Ophir Creek Loop from Tahoe Meadows is a 3.2-mile loop near Incline Village, primarily used for hiking and nature trips.

The trail is easy for most skill levels, with just 265ft of elevation. It’s also kid and dog friendly, so great for a family trip.

Following Ophir Creek, this trail runs through gorgeous Tahoe Meadows and loops back via Ophir Creek Trail.

This is the perfect hike to reconnect yourself with nature and relax, but there aren’t any ‘wow’ factor views to note.

Still, it’s a well-maintained hike featuring a river, meadows, and wildlife, so it’s difficult not to fall in love with it.

Related: 9 Stunning Recreational Lakes near Las Vegas, NV

8. Ophir Creek Trail to Upper Price Lake

Damonte Ranch Wetland Loop
Photo: Ken LundCC BY 2.0
  • Highlight: Tough hike with lots of elevation, steep and rocky terrain, a significant challenge with charming pine groves and views.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 10.3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 2,680 ft
  • Time to Complete: 5h 30min
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 22 miles (25 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Ophir Creek Trail to Upper Price Lake is a 10.3 mile out and back trail near Washoe Valley, best used for hiking and camping.

It is difficult, with 2,680ft of elevation gain, rocky paths, and requires some scrambling in places.

Although challenging, the route offers fantastic views and a tranquil atmosphere. Shaded sections, creeks, and the lake will cool you down on hot days, making it the perfect choice for summer. 

However, the main problem with this trail is that it is overgrown in places, even to the point of blocking part of Upper Price Lake at the top.

The trail itself is challenging enough that it feels rewarding to complete it, and the views along the way are worth it.

Related: 12 Fantastic Recreational Lakes near Reno, NV

9. Damonte Ranch Wetland Loop

Damonte Ranch Wetland Loop
  • Highlight: Flat and easy, paved loop around the wetlands with lots of birds and wild mustangs; ideal for beginners and families.
  • Type: Loop
  • Trail Length: 3.1 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 39 ft
  • Time to Complete: 1h 30min
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 12 miles (15 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Damonte Ranch Wetland loop is a 3.1-mile path near Sparks, used mainly for running, birdwatching, and hiking.

This trail is easy for all skill levels, with a barely noticeable 39ft elevation gain. It’s also paved, making it a stroller and wheelchair accessible.

The route around Damonte Ranch Wetlands is full of birdlife, such as waterfowl, nightjars, lapwings, and even some wild mustangs!

Most hikers are disappointed by this ‘hike’ because it’s flat, paved, and pretty busy, so it’s better suited to beginners.

However, it’s well-maintained, tonnes of fun, and filled with wildlife and wildflowers, so in many ways, the highly trafficked path doesn’t matter at all.

Related: 12 Best Lakes near Reno

10. Tahoe Pyramid Trail: Verdi to Floriston

Tahoe Pyramid Trail: Verdi to Floriston
Photo: Ken LundCC BY 2.0
  • Highlight: Fantastic rail-trail with lots to see; runs along Truckee River and a railway; stunning views throughout.
  • Type: Point to Point
  • Trail Length: 8.3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 905 ft
  • Time to Complete: 4h
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot (past a white house): Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 12 miles (20 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Tahoe Pyramid Trail: Verdi to Floriston is an 8.3-mile point-to-point trail near Verdi, used for hiking and biking.

It is a moderate trail with 905ft of elevation gain, although it is partially paved in spots and has easier segments.

This is a section of a rail-trail that will eventually connect Lake Tahoe with Pyramid Lake. But even as it stands now, this trail is a lot of fun. It has a suspension bridge, railway tracks for trainspotting, and river dams.

Although the noise from I-80 might be distracting, nothing can take your attention away from the stunning views of the Truckee River, which are the biggest highlight of the route.

Related: 9 Stunning Recreational Lakes near Las Vegas, NV

11. Cross Peak

  • Highlight: Short but steep hike to the peak overlooking Reno with stunning views of the city; rocky and slippery but partly shaded.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 2.6 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 551 ft
  • Time to Complete: 2h
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: On the Bitteroot Rd: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 6 miles (15 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Cross Peak is one of the most fun hiking trails near Reno. This 2.6 miles out and back trail is perfect for hiking.

Although short, it has 551ft of elevation over a rocky path with no shade, so it’s a moderate hike.

The last section of the trail is the steepest, but it’s still kid-friendly. While climbing, the views of the Reno city skyline are fabulous!

The biggest problem with this trail, however, is the fact that rattlesnakes are not uncommon. Keep your dogs on a leash and your kids nearby when hiking this one.

Cross Peak stands at 5,446ft, so the panorama of the valley below is stunning. The path itself is well-maintained but don’t miss the right turn to the peak.

Related: 12 Fantastic Recreational Lakes near Reno, NV

12. Steamboat Ditch Trail from Woodchuck

Steamboat Ditch Trail from Woodchuck
  • Highlight: Wide and relatively flat trail with no shade; great for nature trips, trail running, and MTBs.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 9.4 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 436 ft
  • Time to Complete: 4h 30min
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: Woodchuck Circle (layby): Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 6 miles (15 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Steamboat Ditch Trail from Woodchuck is a 9.4 mile out and back trail near Reno, used for hiking, running, and nature trips.

This trail is rated as moderate, despite only a 436ft elevation gain. This is primarily because of the lack of shade and the route’s length.

Steamboat Ditch is a seasonal canal that is followed throughout most of the hike until it finishes at the Hole In The Wall, which is the turnaround point.

The main problem with this trail is that it isn’t well-maintained, and many irresponsible dog owners leave dog mess in the area with no consequences.

If these problems were fixed, it’d be one of the best hiking trails near Reno for the fantastic views it offers.

Related: 12 Best Lakes near Reno

13. Caughlin Ranch Trail

Caughlin Ranch Trail
Photo: Ken LundCC BY 2.0
  • Highlight: Partially-paved, urban path through charming neighborhoods; stroller and wheelchair-friendly; well-kept and perfect for training.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 4.8 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 337 ft
  • Time to Complete: 2h 30min
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Parking: Crissie Caughlin Park: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 3 miles (10 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Caughlin Ranch trail is a 4.8 mile out and back trail near Reno, used for walking, road biking, and running.

This trail is easy for all skill levels. Although it rises 337ft, it is paved and easy to follow the entire route.

It’s an easy and peaceful trail surrounded by homes in a beautiful part of Reno, following a calming river the entire way.

The fact that it’s in such a built-up area can be offputting to some, but sometimes a calming hike is precisely what a family needs.

It’s a wide, paved trail through the beautiful part of West Reno with a lovely river running alongside. What’s not to love?

Related: 9 Stunning Recreational Lakes near Las Vegas, NV

14. Peavine Peak Trail

  • Highlight: Long and strenuous hike to the 8,216-foot peak; exposed, sandy terrain; lots of ups and downs; the perfect challenge.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 8.9 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 2,900 ft
  • Time to Complete: 4h 30min
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Parking: Peavine Hills Ave: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 6 miles (15 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Peavine Peak trail is an 8.9 mile out and back trail near Reno, primarily used for hiking, dog walking, and nature trips.

This trail is rated as difficult, with 2,900ft elevation to Peavine Peak, which stands 8,216ft tall.

This is a challenging but rewarding hike, with great views of Reno on a clear day.

However, the views are not panoramic, as there are other mountains nearby, including the only just smaller South Mountain (standing at 8,012ft).

Heading down from the peak is the most challenging, so bring sensible footwear and hiking poles to prevent slipping.

Related: 12 Fantastic Recreational Lakes near Reno, NV

15. Evans Canyon to The Nevada “N”

Evans Canyon to The Nevada "N"
Photo: dh RenoCC BY 2.0
  • Highlight: Short but steep walk to the letter “N”; lovely views of Reno; perfect workout.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 1.9 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 374 ft
  • Time to Complete: 1h
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Parking: Reno Sports Complex: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 2 miles (10 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

This trail is suitable for all skill levels and is kid-friendly. It has an elevation gain of 374ft in total.

It is a steady uphill most of the way, so the incline is gradual. A little scrambling is necessary to reach the “N” but it’s doable, and the views of Reno at the top make it worth it.

It can be slippy coming down from the “N” too, so make sure to bring sturdy footwear with a good grip.

It’s a heavily trafficked and well-maintained hike that’s popular year-round. And there are many other trails in the area, so it’s easy to extend the adventure.

Related: 12 Best Lakes near Reno

16. Diamond Peak from Tahoe Meadows

  • Highlight: Gorgeous section of Tahoe Rim Trail with shaded pine groves, flower meadows, and stunning views of Lake Tahoe and surrounding mountains.
  • Type: Out and Back
  • Trail Length: 16.1 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 1,873 ft
  • Time to Complete: 8h
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 29 miles (35 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Diamond Peak from Tahoe Meadows is a 16.1 mile out and back trail near Washoe Valley that’s perfect for hiking, backpacking, and snowshoeing in winter.

The trail is rated as moderate and has 1,873ft of elevation throughout. The distance makes it more challenging.

Starting at Tahoe Meadows, the trail heads towards Diamond Peak, which offers stunning views of Lake Tahoe. The firs and pines are delightful to walk through en route, too.

There is very little wrong with this route, but there have been reports of bear sightings further along the trail.

The views on offer here make this trail more than worth the challenge, with the stunning vista of Lake Tahoe, Washoe Lake, and the Washoe Valley from both sides.

Related: 9 Stunning Recreational Lakes near Las Vegas, NV

17. Rim to Reno Loop via Thomas Creek 

Rim to Reno Loop via Thomas Creek
Photo: Ken LundCC BY 2.0
  • Highlight: A very long and grueling loop that most people don’t complete; a highly-rated area with stunning views and shaded pine groves.
  • Type: Lollipop
  • Trail Length: 21.4 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 4,166 ft
  • Time to Complete: 11h
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Parking: Trailhead Lot: Google Maps
  • Distance from Reno: 19 miles (25 min)
  • Dog Friendly: Yes

Rim to Reno Loop via Thomas Creek is one of the longest hiking trails near Reno. This 21.4-mile loop is used for hiking and backpacking.

The trail is rated as difficult because of its length and its whopping 4,166ft elevation gain. This is best left to experienced hikers.

Following the Upper Thomas Creek trail alongside the beautiful creek is peaceful. The switchbacks on the Rim to Reno trail are challenging but offer amazing views.

This beautiful trail is worth the challenge, but remember to bring plenty of water as, after Thomas Creek, there are no more water sources on the Rim to Reno loop trail.

It is a rewarding hike offering unrivaled views of the stunning Alpine Walk Peak, Snowflower Mountain, and the Mt. Rose Wilderness.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to hiking, Reno has a diverse range of locations and trails to satisfy even the most fastidious travelers. Hopefully, you found your next adventure and itching to go!

And for more motivation, try these Funny and Inspirational Hiking Quotes.

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