Donner Party Hike Opens History's Scenic Doors

This weekend, hikers and history buffs will gather to travel the footsteps of the early emigrant’s journeys across the Sierra Nevada one one of several excursions offered during the 25th Annual Donner Party Hike weekend.           

Participants can choose from six different hikes on Saturday, and a walking tour on Sunday. All hikes offer interesting insight into emigrant history from local area guides, along with invigorating recreation and beautiful scenery.

Saturday’s hikes begin and end at Sugar Bowl Ski area Mt. Judah lodge located on Highway 40 on Donner Summit. Guides will lead groups of approximately 15-20 people to interpretive spots giving detailed historical information focused on emigrant and area history. In the afternoon, hikers will enjoy a hamburger lunch, and a presentation by Mark Twain portrayed by McAvoy Layne.

Donner Party Hike

There are six hike options of varying length offered on Saturday. Explore the Dutch Flat Donner Lake Wagon Road and 1913 Corridor Lincoln Highway with views of petroglyphs, old roadside billboards and the China Wall. Hike up Roller Pass and Mt. Judah to see where wagon trains were winched up over the granite. Discover pristine High Sierra Lakes, summit meadows or explore Coldstream Canyon. Back this year is the return of the Railroad Snowsheds hike. Each hike offers a unique and memorable experience.

Sunday starts with a more relaxed walking tour departing from the Donner Camp Picnic Area, located on 2.5 miles north of Truckee on Highway 89. Following the walking tour where guides will detail the Donner Party’s encampment, participants will drive to Donner Memorial State Park to hear more about the Donner Party, the Pioneer Monument, visit the Murphy’s Cabin Site, and enjoy entrance to the all new visitor center offering a historical movie about the Donner Party.

Space is limited for all events and reservations are required. Early registration for the Saturday hikes is $75 ($85 after October 3, 2017 per hiker) and includes a guided hike, commemorative ballcap, hamburger lunch and afternoon presentation. Sunday’s walking tour is part of a two day package and includes the guided walk and entrance to the visitor center. 2-day hike package is $100 ($110 after October 3, 2017). Complete hike descriptions and registration forms can be found at

The event is produced by Just Imagine Marketing and Design in collaboration with Donner Summit Historical Society. Sponsors of this event include: Best Western Truckee Tahoe, Donner Lake Village Resort, Hampton Inn and Suites Tahoe-Truckee, Inn at Truckee, Truckee Chamber of Commerce, Truckee Donner Lodge, Tahoe Trail Bar, and Wild Cherries Coffeehouse.

For info and ticket information, vist