I traveled to the Reno/Tahoe region this past weekend. On Sunday, I had some time before heading back to the airport, and had stayed in Truckee. Of all of the waterfalls in the region, Webber Falls seemed like the easiest to visit in the amount of time I had available.
Webber Falls is about 15 miles or so outside of Truckee, though the drive is a little bit longer than that. The drive itself is really beautiful, and in the end you’ll be rewarded with a really great waterfall. I was actually more impressed with the waterfall than I originally expected to be. (One of the books that I was using as a reference has the worst possible picture of Webber Falls.) It is something like 65′ tall, and at the peak flow in late Spring, it’s really worthwhile. As an added benefit, I was the only person there. The bugs were rather annoying, though.
Now let me mention a few things about the falls that I feel I should mention before I forget. In both books I was using (which I think were newer editions), the directions indicate there is a dirt road that leads down to the falls. This is partially true, though this road is now blocked by boulders. This means you should park on the side of the road at a dirt turnoff. In the end, I actually think this is much more appropriate, as the final dirt road would not have been appropriate for a normal car. Also, the hike is not any significantly further from the road. Just make sure to follow the sound of rushing water.
Second, I don’t think I’ve seen much mention of how possibly dangerous the area around this waterfall could be. While the hike is very short, it leads to some very steep cliffs that are almost all around the falls. The terrain around the falls is not very firm, but surprisingly slippery. I could imagine some reckless people being careless suddenly slipping, only to find that there isn’t much distance to the cliff edge. I found that it was “easier” to head left to get better (and slightly safer) view of the falls. Be careful!!!!!
1) Take CA-89 north from the Truckee area. (The signs weren’t very clear as I was going through Truckee.)
2) Go for about 14 miles north along CA-89. Look for the sign to Independence Lake and Webber Lake.
3) Turn left onto this road. After only a few yards, turn left again onto Jackson Meadows Road.
4) Drive a little over 6.5 miles along Jackson Meadows Road. Look for a sign/road for Lake of the Woods.
5) Just a few hundred feet after this, there is a pullout on your left. As I mentioned, there is a road after this pullout, but it is blocked. (I found it easier to drive a little further down Jackson Meadows Road, and then turn around.)
6) From the pullout, head downhill, and essentially keep going fairly straight, maybe veering slightly to the right. There is a loop “parking area”, and from there, the very short trail heads to the falls.
Accessibility: 7/10 (the hike the falls is very easy, but exercise extreme caution when at the falls)
Where in the World is Webber Falls?: map