Kingsbury Grade - East Bike Climb - PJAMM Cycling

8 mi
2,681 ft
6.1 %



"The east side of Kingsbury Grade (up to Daggett Pass) is a substantial west Nevada climb on the east side of Lake Tahoe up to the rim of the lake crater. A somewhat isolated start leads you up the hill along a solid and fairly steady grade and with a bit of traffic at times. Several graceful curves lead upward with long views toward the desert basin to the east in places. There are no surprises on this one and the climb ends at an obvious top in the scenic ski town of Heavenly Valley. Mostly gentle curves and the solid grade create a speedy descent as well..." (This quote is presented with the approval of John Summerson, from his book, The Complete Guide to Climbing (by Bike), 2nd Edition, pg. 193.)

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There are many options to stay in both the California and the Nevada sides of the greater Tahoe area, including many vacation home rental options.



Difficulty: Strenuous



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Jul 26, 2021
difficulty: Challenging
scenery: 4
traffic: 3
road: 5
Jul 26, 2021
scenery: 4
traffic: 3
road: 5
I do this climb quite often as I live at the bottom of it and it’s always worthwhile. Weekdays after morning “rush hour” is best in terms of traffic. Start around 930am as long as it isn’t too hot. Start very early summer mornings.
May 6, 2021
difficulty: Strenuous
scenery: 4
traffic: 3
road: 4
May 6, 2021
scenery: 4
traffic: 3
road: 4
If the climb doesn't get you the altitude will.

Climb Profile Not Found

Daggett Pass connects Highway 395 (east) and South Shore Lake Tahoe (west).

Before heading to cycle Kingsbury Grade, be sure to rely on our list of Things to Bring on a Cycling Trip, and use our interactive checklist to ensure you don't forget anything.

Climb summary by PJAMM’s John Johnson.


This is definitely the more difficult side of Kingsbury Grade (Daggetts Pass), at six miles and an average grade of 6.1% up to an elevation of 7,357’.  While there are several brief descents along the way (129’ total descent), this is a predominantly steady 6-8% climb.  The elevation profile has one brief 20% grade, but this is a false GPS reading.

Roadway Surface and Traffic Report: The roadway is in excellent condition and moderately travelled, but a good bit of the traffic are big rigs (although they are not able to race too fast up the grade). The road is in excellent condition and there is a wide shoulder the entire route.

Tramway Drive is at the top of the grade and is an access road to Heavenly Valley Ski Resort.  The Pass got its name, according to the local newspaper (Record Courier) “in 1854 when C.D. Daggett acquired 640 acres at the bottom of the road and renamed it.”  The name Kingsbury Grade relates to the community of Kingsbury on the western side of the pass.

Sign at the start of Kingsbury Grade bike climb

Start just west of Gardnerville at Hwy 207/Foothill Road.

Fall colors on the Kingsbury Grade, Hwy 207 

Highway 207 is plenty wide and has bike lane the entire route.

Looking down on NV plains while bicycling up the Kingsbury Grade. 

Excellent views east of Carson Valley first three miles of climb.

Drone photo of Kingsbury Grade near Daggett pass while climbing by bike.  

The grade is clearly discernible as we climb.


This side of Daggett Pass is one-half the distance of the route from the east, at 3.1 miles with an elevation gain of only 1,045’ at 6.4% average grade.  There are some decent views of Lake Tahoe as we descend, but none are exceptional.

Roadway Surface and Traffic Report: As with the route from the east, there is moderate traffic along the climb, although it is much heavier toward the bottom.  The road is in excellent condition without any blemishes as of October 2018.

The Tahoe Rim Trail crosses our route about one mile from the top.

Steep Grade sign at Daggett Pass on Kingsbury Grade 

The climb from the west varies from a max 10% to flatter 2% in stretches.

Drone photo of Lake Tahoe from Daggett Pass and Kingsbury Grade.  

This is the Lake Tahoe side of Daggett Pass.


Kingsbury Grade (Daggett Summit) Stage 2, 2010 Tour of California

Photo:  Tahoe Daily Tribune

The Kingsbury Grade has been featured once in the Tour of California:

  • 2010 Stage 2:
  • Folsom to South Lake Tahoe (eastern approach)
  • 122.1 miles, 18,999’
  • Stage winner:  Egan Bernal (COL; Strava KOM 30:02)

Cycling Oakville Grade Road - photo of sign 

Mark Cavendish (former world champ jersey)

Kingsbury Grade - Stage 6 2018 Tour of California

Photo by Ray Rogers

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