This hike will take less than one hour round trip.
The trail may be inaccessible during periods of heavy snowfall, but it is usually accessible year round. You may have to walk through some snow, however, so warmer months are the best time to visit.
On Leash Only
Chimney Beach is a great place to take in the iconic beauty of the Lake Tahoe shore. The short mile long trail from the parking area down to the lake is well worth the small effort to this quiet, gorgeous spot along the east shore.
What Makes It Great
This easy to access beach is just about 1.1 mile and about 20 minutes from the trailhead. There are a couple of uneven spots along the trail, which might make it difficult for people with limited mobility or small children. For everyone else, though, this is a must see in the Tahoe area.
Follow the trail through dry Sierra pine trees and granite boulders. It will take you down to a picturesque sand beach scattered with large rocks that make for fun exploring. This is a perfect place to jump in when the weather is warm or just soak in the views if you visit when it is still a little chilly. Stay until it’s time for the sun to go down and you will be rewarded with a gorgeous sunset.
The most iconic image of this beach is its namesake, a stone chimney that rises right out of the sand. It’s an absolutely necessary place for a photo op, so have those camera’s ready. Many people explore the shoreline from this spot. Be warned, however, that just south of here is another beach that is known for being clothing optional.
Who is Going to Love It
Anyone in love with Lake Tahoe needs to experience Chimney Beach at least once, but you will probably want to come back again and again once you do. Located on the Nevada side of the lake on its eastern edge, it is a great place to escape the more crowded beaches in on the northern and southern ends.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
Parking is limited, so try to snag a spot early on crowded weekends. Drive south on Highway 28, the scenic road that hugs the east side of Lake Tahoe. 2.6 miles past Sand Harbor State Park you will see restrooms on the side of the road. Pull off to the side here in this parking area and walk past the restrooms to the trailhead.