From the Pacific Northwest, we traveled south toward Lake Tahoe to continue our fall adventures before heading back to a week of work in the Denver area. Earlier this month, we chased a huge coastal storm system down the coast, hiking the beach and camping with great views. After our trek down the coastal highway 101, we had wanted to hike the Rogue River Trail (40 miles) in the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest, but the 12 inches of recent rainfall made it impassable. Instead, we took a rough & tumble mountain road to I-5 where we headed south to Mt. Shasta for some hiking around Castle Lake, Heart Lake and Lake Siskiyou. We back-roaded it then to Lassen National Park only to find that recent and unprecedentedly early snow & ice storms closed the park. Luckily, we found respite from the rain and discovered the sun again by the time we made it to Tahoe :).
Tahoe is such a gem, especially in the fall when there are fewer tourists and vehicles on the road. And the weather? Spectacular. Cold in the 30’s at night but it was sunny and in the 50’s by day. We decided to make the lake our focal point for the short time we were here — here’s a few ideas of how to do just that :).
- Road Bike: We took our touring bikes all the way around the lake. 72 miles of beautiful views, killer climbs, and plenty of screaming downhills to make up for the uphill. Go here for details about each section of the ride. We found the best parking for the truck at the 64 Acres Park Tahoe Rim Trail trailhead behind the transit hub in Tahoe City. It’s best to do the loop clockwise so you’re always on the lake-side of the road for best views :).
- Hike: If the lake is what you want, then the Rubicon Trail is where it’s at. Unfortunately we attempted this hike on a Sunday when there was zero parking for the truck at either of the trailheads. There’s a lot of touristy overlooks in that section so parking can be a nightmare. Luckily, we found roadside parking in the middle and carved our own path down to the lakeshore trail.
- Paddle: Of course Lake Tahoe is perfect for paddling. Crystal clear turquoise water, snow-capped mountain views… it defines beauty. If it’s too windy on the lake to paddle, though, there’s always Donner Lake just up the road. We paddled with the crew of Truckee’s outrigger canoe club for a great morning on the OC6.
- End of October – Traveling across Nevada to Crested Butte and then the Boulder area
- Nov. 3-13 – Denver area (work at Thornton Costco road show with Goal Zero)
- Remainder of November – playtime in Colorado / Arizona
- December – Southern California (work at Costco road show with Goal Zero)
- January-March – will be in search of snow-filled fun *somewhere* tbd
- April/May to September – Alaska