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Level: Intermediate
Length: 9 mi (14.5 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Loop
Elevation: +563/ -521 ft
Total: 127 riders

Mountain Biking Sawtooth Ridge

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#159 of 1,003 mountain bike trails in California
#2,242 in the world

The Sawtooth Ridge Trail rolls through Sierra forests high above the Truckee River near Squaw Valley. Beginner and intermediate mountain bikers will love the stellar viewpoints, moderate climbs and fun rhythm. Occasional technical features keep things exciting. For a greater challenge, ride the trail in the opposite direction.

First added by dppaladino on Jun 14, 2005. Last updated Apr 30, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: unknown
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: unknown
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
Take Hwy 267 to Brockway Dr. At the 7-11 on Brockway Dr. turn onto Ponderosa Palisades Rd. Take a right on Silverfir, a left on Thelin. The Forest Service gate will be on your right-hand side, and the trailhead starts 0.2 miles after gate. There are gravel parking lots at each of the intersections of the trail to the 06. And nearby are trails that intersect with the Northstar trail system.
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Sawtooth Ridge Trail map

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Local Info

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TRiPtheNiP (on Oct 6, 2019)
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Trail conditions

Dry (on Jul 25, 2020)
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Mountain Bike Trails Near Truckee, California

| 15 mi
| 4 mi
| 0.6 mi
| 2 mi

Rider questions

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  • Josh Harrison

    The other trails in the Truckee area are way better than this one. Its pretty rocky and slow. Not much climbing or descending, just riding through smallish rocks. Not great views, super hot. Not enough elevation change to hold interest of an experienced rider, and perhaps a little rocky for a novice. I wouldn't really recommend unless you are really just trying to ride everything in the area.

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  • Orinda8

    The trail forms a loop around a fireroad that goes north-south up the center loop. The western loop is much more rocky with one nearly mile long rock garden that beginners will have to walk. The eastern loop is smoother and is almost a flow trail in parts although the peak of this side has rocks/gravel (?) for erosion control. Several links to the center fireroad allow one to shorten the ride or go back to the other side of the loop. Most of the trail 2-5% grade with max 11-12%

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  • jendoug

    Trail was as advertised! After trail looped back on itself (at about 9 mikes) we did the loop again which was better and faster after seeing the trail once. Good first ride in Tahoe if you are getting your altitude lungs set!! Definitely want to ride this on a dual shock,!

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  • knanier

    Good beginner to intermediate trail. Some loose sections, but no scree. Lots of turns at the beginning. Quick ride if you're in the area and fairly mellow grade.

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  • ccdriver

    Fun easy trail. There are some rocks but no scree like one of the other reviewers said.

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  • ccdriver

    Fun trail but I never found the loose scree. Have done this ride several times and there is no loose scree.

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  • tumbleweed14

    Decent trail but really not all that exciting. Great for those without too much lung power or just getting into the sport who are out in the area. The views were nice! Some fun sections.

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  • pablodiablo

    My teenage son (beginner) and I found this to be an enjoyable and satisfying ride. We found most of the previous reviews to be accurate, although we didn't encounter anything that I would characterize as loose scree. The various climbs are not too long or very steep, but require some effort and are sufficiently spread out over the ride to provide a pretty good cardio workout. We really enjoyed the changing scenery...from relatively open pine forest to a short section of dense forest, the Truckee River valley, and a section of the trail carves its way through a manzanita blanketed mountain side. We would definitely ride this track again. July 16, 2009

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  • ****

    Nice flowy singletrack. Very rocky in spots making it a slow ride for the most part. Got to the furthest part thinking it was only half way out. The ride back was mellow. I think that riding the opposite way out as talked about would be a good alternate that I will be trying soon. Very few people on trail supprisingly. Mainly hikers.

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  • cache

    (amateur rider review): The west side of this trail is quite rocky with 2-8" loose scree, and not as many fun (stable) rocks to jump, but there are nice views of the Truckee River canyon. The east side of this trail is mostly dirt winding through the trees, and less technical (though soft and dusty in August). Some trails are even banked a bit from other riders wearing a groove. Total climb about 500'. A gravel road bisects the trail, so either half can be done independently. Beware there are some gypsy trails on the east side as well. They are fun descents to avoid the road, but not on any map I have.* Review edited 8/24/2008

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  • zhongchien

    Good views, bland singletrack.

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  • AK_Dan

    Great Ride. Hats off to the trail designers on this one. Not a fast trail by any means and some sections are a bit rocky however they seem to be on the downhill portions if done counter clockwise as described above. After the first mile of winding through the forest you will break out over the Truckee River and follow along the canyon for the next 5 miles. At 3.5 mi there is a short lollipop trail that leads out to an overlook with a great view - a must see if this your first time here. From midway heading back north is nice trail through fairly thick forest, a bit of a climb towards the end but a nice downhill run all the way back to FS 06 is the payoff.

    This area, like a lot of the Tahoe Region, is covered with old Forest Service roads and trails that arent on any map, you will intersect many of these just about anywhere you ride up here. This trail is signed and fairly easy to follow, locals who ride this area have many different routes so following the majority of the tire tracks can easily get you off the main trail.

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