Barker Peak is a rocky dome just above the Pacific Crest Trail rising immediately above Barker Pass west of Lake Tahoe.
Barker Peak from the Ellis Peak Trail
While not prominent, it is a named peak due to its precipitous rise above Barker Pass and easy accessibility from the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT). Due to its steepness, there isn’t an actual trail to the summit, and reaching the summit requires some scrambling.
Barker Peak is just one destination among many from Barker Pass, offering stellar views of the surrounding area.
View north from the summit rocks
The Barker Pass area is best accessed starting in late June through October. Snow levels depend on the season, but West Tahoe mountains get more snow than their eastern counterparts. This is an excellent snowshoeing area when the pass is open. The pass usually opens in early June and closes in early to mid-November.
Take Highway 89 to Barker Pass Road on the west side of the road. The road also has a sign for the Blackwood Canyon Sno-Park. If approaching from the south, it is just north of Homewood. If approaching from the north, it is just in Tahoe Pines. The turn-off is right across from the Lake Tahoe shoreline. A sign points to Barker Pass. Drive to the end of the pavement in a little over 7 miles. Then continue on a well-graded dirt road for less than half a mile to the PCT trailhead.
Barker Peak rises just above the PCT trailhead. The PCT heads just south of Barker Peak before cutting to the west into the forest. Hike just about 300 yards up the trail from the parking area, and then hike steeply up 400’ to the summit. You can descend back down to the PCT from the summit heading west to enjoy more of the trail. The summit is reached in less than half a mile.
Barker Peak from the PCT
There is no red tape for Barker Pass during the summer months. The road is usually closed during the spring and winter months. Therefore, it is recommended as a summer destination unless you want a challenging snowshoe experience from lower elevation. If doing so, winter parking at the Blackwood Canyon Sno-Park requires a SNO-PARK PASS.
For more information on road closures, visit the Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit