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Climbing above Lake Tahoe is where you’ll find it all. Above this largest alpine Lake in North America lies Donner Summit, an area catering to all skill levels, ages, and objectives. We’ll go out there together and our AMGA certified guides will be sure to find you the best crags for your ambitions and abilities! It’s family and beginner-friendly, but that doesn’t mean that seasoned climbers should give up on this area just yet—there are crags up to 5.13 here, featuring mostly trad and sport climbing, though you’ll also find bouldering and multi-pitch. And there’s also an anchor building course for a little more experienced climbers. It doesn’t take much to see why Lake Tahoe remains one of the best climbing spots in Sierra Nevada, even among those climbers hungry for some world-class rock climbing.

  • There's something for every climber here

    Whether you’re a total beginner or an experienced climber yearning for a challenge, Lake Tahoe has got you covered

  • Explore the Donner Summit area

    Wildly picturesque and exciting area where you’ll find trad, sport, multi-pitch climbing, and bouldering

  • Gather your friends and familly

    There’s no better way to spend a day with your loved ones than in the outdoors—climb for a full day, or do an anchor building course

Available itineraries

Full-Day Rock Climbing in Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe offers so many great climbs that having a certified guide to help you navigate your options will ensure you make the most out of your time on the rocks. Your tailored and private full-day experience will have you developing your technique on handpicked routes catered to your skill level or testing your skills on tough classics reserved for seasoned climbers. This is beginner-friendly, and the coolest way to spend the day outdoors. Gather your friends and family, and have fun! More about covered skills below.

  • This program is a private and flexible program based on the objectives of you and your team. We’ll build the itinerary based on what you’re looking for and we’ll pick a start time based on your schedule and current weather, but you can expect it to last around 8 hours. Below is an example itinerary:

      • At 8 am, we’ll gather and review the plan for the day. We’ll discuss the weather, climbing skills you’ll cover, and route options based on your objectives. After a quick gear check, we’ll approach the climbing area.
      • During the next 3.5 hours, we will pick and change venues based on the objectives for the day and which zones offer the best climbing and settings for your skills.
      • At around noon, we’ll have a lunch break, after which we will continue climbing for a couple of more hours.
      • At around 4 pm, the course ends and we will circle back to the original goals for the day, also making sure to answer any of the remaining questions. We’ll close with a recap on what we learned and what’s next for you and your team.
      • knots
      • traditional anchors
      • multipitch efficiency
      • rappelling and lowering
      • belaying
      • rock rescue
      • ascending ropes
      • rock movement
      • family rock climbing
      • descent choices — which line will we take to get down, what are the concerns and options if something slides…
Group Rock Climbing Anchor Building Course in Lake Tahoe

Take your climbing skills to the next level with this anchor building course in Tahoe! You'll learn the essential techniques and equipment necessary to build strong and secure anchors while climbing. This program is designed for climbers with some experience who want to expand their knowledge and climb more efficiently! This course will teach you the most efficient and appropriate techniques given the type of gear you have and where you'd like to build your anchor.

  • At 8 am, we will all meet together at the trailhead. After a briefing and an overview of the day ahead, we’ll spend the full day learning to build rock climbing anchors. At around noon, we’ll have a lunch break, after which we’ll get back to our course, and end the day at around 3 pm.

      • Traditional Anchors
      • Sport Anchors
      • Tree/Rock Anchors (Natural)
      • Gear placement
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Meet your guide

Blackbird Mountain Guides
Blackbird Mountain Guides
Blackbird Mountain Guides is here to help you push farther, faster, and smarter. Their ultimate goal is to help you develop awareness, efficiency, and a good decision-making philosophy in the mountains. Whether they’re guiding a "type-1-fun" adventure, helping you develop skills to meet your next mountain objective, or playing in their time off, the Blackbird Mountain Guides team strives to move in good style.
5.00 (3 reviews)
Knowledgeable & Experienced - Absolutely Loved It!
Belle J. (source: Guide's website)

Absolutely loved working with Blackbird Mountain Guides. Zeb was an awesome guide, knowledgeable and experienced, would highly recommend!

Totally Worth It - Phenomenal Day!
Kirk D. (source: Guide's website)

Okay, that was totally worth it! Phenomenal day. Lots of good reassurance that I’m doing the right thing. Plus many new skills to add to my toolkit. I feel like everyone should do one of these classes every 5 years or something like that. Daryl Teittinen was awesome, a good mix between professionalism, teacher and fun person to hang out with. He is a fantastic teacher. Excellent listener and I had great timing and knowledge went to cut me off and direct me to the more important issues/techniques. I’ll go climb the rest of the year and come back again next year for some more education. Thank you!

Excellent Rock Anchor Building Course!
Elena S. (source: Guide's website)

I took the Anchor Building course and it was excellent. The full day allowed for lots of content and practice, and we even climbed an easy route and got to see how these skills would be used on a multi-pitch outing. I highly recommend their courses.

Things to know

  • What you get on this adventure:

      • Rock climbing of your choosing
        • Full-day rock climbing
        • Rock climbing anchor course
      • Experienced AMGA trained guide
      • Ropes and gear for training (including helmet and harness at no additional charge, but let us know upon booking if you need it)
      • Group safety gear
      • Wag bags for human waste disposal – in with compliance ‘Leave No Trace’ principles

    What’s not included:

      • Transportation to the meeting point
      • Accommodations
      • Meals
      • Climbing shoes — available to add upon checkout
      • Guide gratuities — optional
      • Travel and medical insurance — optional
  • For joining the full-day rock climbing in Lake Tahoe, no experience is necessary! This is a program for all levels, all climbers can join, regardless of their experience—from never-climbed-outside to 5.10 trad leaders. You let your guide know what you’re looking for and they’ll set up a great day of climbing and skills for you and your team! Make sure you have a basic level of fitness, able to spend an active day outside, climbing.

    For the anchor building course, you have to be able to spend an active day outside, moving uphill at 1,000 ft per hour for a duration of roughly 1 hour between brakes. Participants should be able to hike 3-5 miles and climb 1,000-1,500 vertical feet throughout the course of the day. It’s recommended that you can create the following knots prior to the course:

      • overhand on a bight
      • figure 8 on a bight
      • figure 8 follow through
      • clove hitch
      • double fisherman
  • Here’s a list of the equipment you need to bring:

      • Day pack large enough to carry all the items listed (around a 25-40L bag)
      • Helmet, UIAA/CE approved for climbing — available to rent free of charge
      • Harness with belay loop — available to rent free of charge
      • Climbing shoes — available to rent at an added fee
      • Approach shoes (optional, bring if you have them)
      • Nut tool, for removing nuts/stoppers (optional)
      • 5 non-locking carabiners
      • 5 locking carabiners
      • Belay device
      • Assisted Braking Device
      • 1 Prusik loop, fixed 4’ loop of 6mm nylon cord or purpose built loop like Sterling “Hollow Block”
      • 1 Cordelette, 20’, 7mm nylon cord or 5.9mm
      • Sterling PowerCord
      • Double Length Sewn Runner
      • Water bottle or hydration bladder (2L capacity)
      • Comfortable clothing
      • Sunhat and sunglasses
      • Toiletries

    Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.

  • Group sizes and prices:

      • Group sizes are between 1-4 people with one guide.
      • Costs per person will decrease as the group grows for private tours, so it’s the perfect opportunity to climb with friends and family.

    Climbing days can be arranged for bigger groups. Contact us prior to booking.

    Min. age requirements:

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
      • Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to join climbing on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.

    If your group has climbers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • You will climb in the Donner Summit area of Lake Tahoe. The nearest city is Reno, NV, and the nearest airport is Reno-Tahoe International Airport (RNO).

  • Day Trips Cancellations
    Fully refundable within the initial 48 hours from booking, unless the trip date is less than 7 days from the time of the booking.
    Cancellations up to 7 days prior to the trip date are refundable 100%.
    Cancellations within 7 days prior to the trip date are non-refundable.

Have more questions? Read our FAQ,
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