|Today we visited beautiful Lake Tahoe, a large freshwater lake in the Sierra Nevada mountains, located along the border between California and Nevada, west of Carson City, Nevada. It is the second deepest lake in the U.S., with a maximum depth of 1,645 feet trailing only Oregon's Crater Lake at 1,949 ft. Tahoe is also the 10th deepest lake in the world, and the fifth deepest in average depth. It is about 22 miles long and 12 miles wide and has 72 miles of shoreline. Approximately two-thirds of the shoreline is in California. The south shore is dominated by the lake's largest city, South Lake Tahoe, California, which adjoins the town of Stateline, Nevada, while Tahoe City, California is located on the lake's northwest shore.
Although highways run within sight of the lake shore for much of Tahoe's perimeter, many important parts of the shoreline now lie within state parks or are protected by the US Forest Service. It is home to a number of ski resorts, summer outdoor recreation, and tourist attractions. Of course, snow and skiing are a significant part of the area's economy and reputation. We stopped at the Squaw Valley Olympic torch (site of the VIII Winter Olympic Games) on our way home this evening and took pics. When I researched the torch I found it to be very interesting, so am including a link if you'd like to read more on it as well.
VIII Olympic Torch
Of course, the Nevada side also includes large casinos. As we entered the outskirts of town we were shocked. It's been many years since we were on this side of the lake and the change was amazing! Ritzy attractions, big-name entertainment and the lure of a jackpot all beckon at abundant glittering casinos. There's even a Hard Rock Cafe located in Harvey's Resort and Casino, just 5 minutes from Heavenly Ski Resort and only 1,000 yards from Lake Tahoe itself. We buzzed right on through, as today we are only interested in natural attractions!
Moving on we stopped for a few photos, but were losing our light quickly. Darn daylight savings time! But we knew that if there's one place along the coastline of Lake Tahoe that you should definitely see, it's Emerald Bay. We arrived about 5pm. Wish we had arrived 45 minutes sooner as the shadows were deepening quickly. But it was still a beautiful sight. I jumped out of the truck, camera in hand and shot as many pics as I could quickly. The island in the middle of Emerald Bay is Fannette Island, the only island in all of Lake Tahoe. The color of the water is amazing. The shoreline of the cove was quite pretty as well. The visitor parking here is plentiful and there weren't many folks. That, along with the stunning view, made this our favorite stop of the day.
All too soon it was time to head for home. As we made our way along, a full moon rose, casting a beautiful glow on the lake. It was breathtaking! What an awesome way to end our day! It's no wonder that Lake Tahoe is a vacation paradise. Everything you could want is here: mountains, snow, skiing, sparkling blue water, and of course the one thing that every road tripper looks for. A great way to see it all, from behind the wheel....