Reno MTB Folks... Help with bike rental / where to ride

Calling all Reno / Tahoe folks! I need a little assist if someone would be so kind…

I have a layover in Reno with 1 full day off and zero commitments. I was really hoping to go to Northstar and ride in the bike park, but, it appears to be closed the day I am there (Wednesday 27 July).

Can anyone recommend a place to (1) rent a bike and (2) get some great riding in? My priorities would be as follows, but I am not picky and and will just be stoked to get a bike and get riding.

  1. XC bike and some kind of epic loop / out and back with killer scenery and fun riding (3-4ish hours).
  2. Enduro / Trail bike and a park or hill where I can just do fun laps and explore.
  3. Gravel / Road bike for a 3-4 hour ride.
  4. Any combination of the above.

I am staying in Downtown Reno at some casino/hotel, but I can rent a car or uber as needed. Thanks in advance!


There’s three options that come to mind mostly because you can ride/shuttle from the shops.

  1. Ride the Flume with Flume Trail Bikes in Incline Village. They’ll shuttle you to Spooner Lake and then you ride back to the shop. The riding isn’t great but the views on the Flume are amazing. Sadly, the better way is to include the Tahoe Rim Trail from Mount Rose to Tunnel Creek but that 9 mile section of the TRT is only open to bikes on even days of the month.
  2. Rent a bike from the Bikeworks in Tahoe Donner (a subdivision in Truckee) and ride the Donner Lake Rim Trail, Hawks Peak, Mother Lode, & Mustang Sally. Still some views but not great, but better riding than the Flume.
  3. Go to Olympic Bike shop in Tahoe City. From there you can either ride Stanford Rock or a loop around Mt. Watson (backside of Northstar). I ride the Watson area a lot and there’s a ton of diversity in trails there - flow, chunk, views and many miles of trails.

Thank you mtbjones! You nailed it, the key is being able to ride from the bike rental place. I have ridden the flume trail and yes, stunning views. I am gonna make some calls for options 2 and 3. I am leaning toward #3 based on your description.

Anyone got any intel on the smoke outlook for this week in the Truckee area? Gonna be rideable?

Smoke-wise, things aren’t looking great. Smoke from the Oak fire down near Yosemite rolled into town last night and is here today. NWS forecasts continues poor air quality through the week. Is it rideable? Well, depends. There might be sometime during the day that you could get out, but I’m not really counting on it for the next few days.

edit to add: I generally stay indoors if AQI is going to be >100, maybe a bit lower if I’m expecting to be out long; a bit higher if I’m out for a quick ride. This time of year I spend a lot of time looking at air quality data here: Real-Time Air Quality Map | PurpleAir

1 Like

Thanks for the reply. I was kind of afraid of that. I’d be looking at a few hundred bucks when factor in ubers, rentals, not to mention lugging shoes, pedals and such around on a 4 day trip for maybe

Unfortunately I think it may not be worth the risk getting over there and having a lousy ride experience. It’s a bummer cause I’d love the change of scenery from SoCal!

Thanks for all the help. I’ll be set for next time.

The AQI has been falling all day and they’ve made some progress on the Oak Fire. Most of Tahoe is Good and Reno is Moderate as of right now.

Wednesday could be clear and a great day for a ride. I’d bring the gear and see what happens.

Well I should’ve listened to @mtbjones and my old Boy Scout motto to always be prepared. It’s a lovely day here! But a nice long run on the Truckee River will have to suffice. But hey, at least it’s free!