We have studied the subcellular distribution of the alpha 1 and alpha 2 subunits of the dihydropyridine (DHP) receptor and ankyrin in rat skeletal muscle with immunofluorescence and immunogold labeling techniques. All three proteins were concentrated in the triad junction formed between the T-tubules and sarcoplasmic reticulum. The alpha 1 and alpha 2 subunits of the DHP receptor were colocalized in the junctional T-tubule membrane, supporting their proposed association in a functional complex and the possible participation of the alpha 2 subunit in excitation-contraction coupling. Ankyrin label in the triad showed a distribution different from that of the DHP receptor subunits. In addition, ankyrin was found in longitudinally oriented structures outside the triad. Thus, ankyrin might be involved in organizing the triad and in immobilizing integral membrane proteins in T-tubules and the sarcoplasmic reticulum.