Nestled in the Lake Tahoe Basin, the Spooner Backcountry is a widespread recreational and natural oasis, with a lake surrounded by aspens and more than 12,000 acres of forested, open space. The park features 50 miles of hiking, equestrian and mountain biking trails and primitive roads. A few of the more popular trails are the Marlette, Red House, Flume and Tahoe Rim Trails.
Hiking: The 5-mile trail to Marlette Lake via North Canyon Road is the most popular backcountry trail. A hiker and horse trail parallels this road for four miles. Access is from Spooner Lake, which is surrounded by a flat 2-mile trail that offers excellent opportunities for nature study.
The famous and historic 4.4-mile Marlette Flume Trail is accessed from the south via North Canyon or from the north via the steeper Tunnel Creek Road. Thirteen miles of the 165-mile Tahoe Rim Trail wind in and out of the park. The Marlette Flume Trail is closed to bikes between Hobart Road and Spooner Summit. The segment north of the park, between Tunnel Creek Road and the Mount Rose Highway, is open to bikes even days only. Roaded 4-wheel drive access into the Spooner Backcountry is available out of Carson City via Ash Canyon Road and reaches the park boundary about a half mile from Hobart Reservoir.
Fishing: Fishing is a favorite backcountry activity. A Nevada fishing license is required and can be purchased online at ndow.org. At Spooner Lake, the limit is five and bait is allowed. The Marlette Lake season runs July 15 through September 30 and is catch-and-release only. Use only artificial lures and single barbless hooks in this catch-and-release lake. The Hobart Reservoir season runs May 1 through September 30. The limit is five, and only one may be longer than 14 inches. Only artificial lures and single barbless hooks are allowed.
Hunting: Hunters enjoy the backcountry in accordance with Nevada Department of Wildlife regulations and State Parks’ administrative authority. Please call the park for more information on hunting areas, or click here for a map of the No Hunting Zones in Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park / Spooner Backcountry.
Cross-Country Skiing and Snowshoeing: The park has entered into a partnership with Nevada Nordic, a non-profit group whose goal is to bring groomed ski trails to Nevada. The community ski trail grooming is free to the public and supported completely by donations. Cross-country skiers and snowshoe users are welcome, but all visitors should be careful not to damage the skiing surface or tracks. Groomed trails are located on the south side of Spooner Lake in Spooner Meadow and up North Canyon to Marlette Lake, snow permitting.
Entrance fees required.