My first memories of Lake Tahoe are of my dad, taking a dip in its cool waters. It’s summer, and the sun has warmed the air to the 70s, but the water is in the 50s. Brrr. He looks cold after his summer plunge, even to my young eyes. The lake is so cold, so big, and so blue.
It’s big (there are 121 square miles of water in both California and Nevada). It’s deep (at 1645 feet, it’s the third deepest lake in North America and the second deepest lake in the U.S.). It’s high (the highest lake in the U.S. at 6225 feet above sea level). But why is it so blue? Click here to find out.
When people talk about skiing at Tahoe, they’re really talking about skiing the Sierra Nevada mountains located near or around the lake. There are at least 19 mountain peaks, jagged and majestic at 9500 feet high. Tahoe is known as the site of the demise of many in the Donner Party in 1846-1847 and the site of the 1960 Winter Olympics. The first California chairlift was funded by none other than Walt Disney in 1937 at Sugar Bowl. Now there are 17 ski resorts with downhill, cross country, or back country skiing – some big, some small, each with a character of its own.
I started the new year at Alpine Meadows. Though the morning was cold with minus zero temperatures and snowflakes blurred our vision, by noon, the sun was out and our view of the lake from the summit was unobstructed.
Trip taken January 2016.