I drove to Reno on Monday afternoon, parked the car, and walked right into the Eldorado. Looking for a ladies room. That is one huge casino. I wandered around the downtown casino area a bit; kind of seedy with pawn shops & souvenir shops (99 cent shotglasses). Was lured into Harrahs by a Starbucks sign outside (we all have our vices). But the only gambling I did was on whether the young man who offered to take my picture with the Reno sign was actually going to give me back my camera.
Drove into South Lake Tahoe, crossing the state line by a few blocks back into California. I'd picked out a motel from the BCAA book and I was surprised how cheap it was. Got a room key & went up .. that room had a running toilet that wouldn't stop and a harsh disinfectant smell. Went back & paid more for a fancier room, this one with a heart-shaped jacuzzi tub & mirrored headboard. I wasn't thrilled, especially with the view from the window almost entirely taken up by a shed. I was going to put up with it anyway, so brought my things in and went for a walk over to the lake. Right across the street from the lake was another hotel I'd seen in the BCAA book, so I went in and asked how much. It was only $10 more so I asked to see a room (I should start doing this before I register). It was great; a view of the lake and just a much nicer vibe to the place. I went back to the first motel, resolved that I was moving even if they charged me for a night. Packed my things in seconds and went to the office. The manager wasn't too happy.
Manager to clerk: Can't we give her a better room?
Clerk (sullenly): She already HAS a spa suite.
Then the manager offered to cut the price of the spa suite in half, but I refused and fled. Spent the rest of the evening feeling profoundly relieved.
Lake Tahoe stats: Elevation - 6,229 ft. Lake is 22 x 12 miles.