paths are not always appropriate for cranking it up on a racing bike. South Lake Tahoe’s network of bike paths includes scenic rides to several beaches to the west. Incline Village’s path to Sand Harbor and Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park has stunning views and accesses several small coves. Tahoe City is the center of over 19 miles of connected bike path, including the popular route along the Truckee River to Squaw Valley and the 12-mile journey down the West Shore to Sugar Pine Point State Park and Meeks Bay. Truckee’s network of paths includes the Legacy Trail, a 4.4-mile ride along the Truckee River.
In spring and fall, a number of migratory birds linger in this region. The larger wetlands of the Upper Truckee River, Carson Valley and Little Truckee host a wide variety of species. Year around, look to the sky for osprey, red-tail hawk and the occasional bald eagle. Or have mountain chickadee eating out of your hand on “chickadee ridge,” a short hike east of Nevada Highway 431 in Tahoe Meadows.
[Also– Rentals, charters, launching, parasailing] Boat rentals and launching, jet ski, kayak and paddle-board rentals are available at marinas surrounding Lake Tahoe, including in Tahoe City, Sunnyside, Homewood, Tahoe Keys, Ski Run and Tahoe Vista. Water sports rentals are also found near many hotels and lakefront restaurants, including the Beacon in South Lake Tahoe, Hyatt Regency in Incline Village and in Kings Beach State Recreation Area. Parasailing is available on both North and South Shores. Pay attention to weather forecasts and wind direction before taking any boating trip on Tahoe. Be advised before diving headfirst into the middle of Lake Tahoe from a boat on a hot summer day that the water just four feet down might be a shocking 40 degrees F colder than the air.
30 SUMMER/FALL 2022 | Lake Tahoe Visitor Guide
If you’d rather experience Lake Tahoe from the comfort of a cruise boat, the M.S. Dixie in Zephyr Cove and Tahoe Gal in Tahoe City depart daily. Sailing charters are available in Tahoe City, Tahoe Keys and on the Sierra Cloud catamaran at Hyatt beach, Incline Village.
Also– Arcades Stateline in South Tahoe is home to the region’s famous, large casino towers—Harrah’s, Harveys, MontBleu and Hard Rock Hotel—all adjacent to each other. All feature 24-hour slots and table games, plus entertainment, dining and lodging. Crystal Bay on the northern state line has 2 smaller casinos, with the Hyatt nearby in Incline Village. Those looking for Tahoe’s best arcades should also head to the casinos, Harveys being one favorite spot to play.
[Also– Road-biking] Reno local Greg LeMond was the first non-European to win the Tour de France, and his legs muscles were built on punishing Tahoe climbs like the Mt. Rose Highway’s 4,400-foot ascent and 2,500-foot descent to Lake Tahoe. For those at ease on narrow mountain roads, the region is full of challenges. Chief among them is the infamous Death Ride bicycle race, winding over steep mountain passes south of Tahoe, and celebrating its 41th anniversary in mid-July. The belt-notch Tahoe ride for many cyclists is circling the lake, a 72-mile journey that can be turned into a “century” with a 28-mile out-and-back to Truckee. The road around the lake features a mostly adequate, single-file shoulder, but there are also stretches with little to no shoulder on East Shore and near Emerald Bay. Ride clockwise if you want to maximize lake views. Highway 89 from Squaw Valley to Truckee has wider bike lanes and can be part of an alternate around-the-lake route that includes a 1,385-foot climb over Brockway Summit on Highway 267. Other popular road rides include climbing Ward and Blackwood Canyons on the West Shore. Climb almost 1200 vertical feet in 3 miles on Old Highway 40 from Donner Lake over the Sierra Crest. Or to dial it back and cruise, see Bike Paths.