Discovering Northern California
Lake Tahoe California

A Border Runs Through It!

Lake Tahoe California - Actually, Lake Tahoe's a bit unusual in that the state line between California and Nevada runs right through the lake. Two-thirds of the lake and almost as much of the shoreline are in California; the rest is in Nevada.

But most folks on a Lake Tahoe vacation really don't care which side of the border they're on unless there's gambling involved (gambling is only allowed on the Nevada side).

Forged through a combination of geologic block faulting and the scouring of glaciers, Lake Tahoe is the largest alpine lake in the United States.

It's fun to astound your friends with the plethora of amazing statistics surrounding Lake Tahoe. For instance, "Did you know there's enough water in Lake Tahoe to put the entire state of California under 14 inches?"

But this quote from Mark Twain tells the real story: "As [the lake] lay there with the shadows of the mountains brilliantly photographed upon its still surface I thought it must surely be the fairest picture the whole world affords."

Discovering Lake Tahoe California

People travel to Lake Tahoe for all sorts of reasons and at all times of the year.

Most are looking for at least some outdoor activities, whether it's lying on the beach to get a tan or challenging the mountains via mountain bike or snow board.

And it doesn't matter if it's Summer, Winter, Spring or Fall, there are things to see and do enough to keep you busy day in and day out.

Not to mention that many a couple has looked forward to a Lake Tahoe wedding. Who could resist the idea of wedding photos taken along the shores of one of the most beautiful lakes in the world?

Lake Tahoe California's claims to fame are endless, but here's a sampling:

  • Its beautiful sapphire-colored water that's so clear you can see the bottom of the lake up to an amazing 75 feet down
  • Its location in the awe-inspiring Sierra Nevada Mountains where it's surrounded by peaks as high as 10,000 feet and more, making for some of the most spectacular mountain views in the world
  • Its year-round vacation status; with winter sports and summer activities - it's a true destination with something for everyone
  • The friendliness of its people - Lake Tahoans are in love with their little piece of the world, and they enjoy sharing it with visitors
  • Its Fourth of July synchronized fireworks display - starbursts of color explode in the sky and are mirrored on the lake
  • Its Squaw Valley - a great snow sports venue and home to the 1960 Winter Olympics; YOU can Ski where Olympians have Skied!
  • Its unbelievably enthralling mountain drives and spectacular lake views
  • Its play areas, and sandy beaches just waiting for you to discover them

That's just the beginning of what Lake Tahoe has to offer. Let us help you find your way around!

How To Explore Lake Tahoe California & Nevada

Because there's so much to see and do around Lake Tahoe, I like
to divide it: first in half, then into quadrants...

North Lake Tahoe, known to insiders as North Shore, consists of:

  • California's North Shore (including Tahoe City, Tahoe Vista, and Kings Beach)
  • Nevada's North Shore (including Incline Village)

South Lake Tahoe, known locally as South Shore, includes:

  • California's South Shore (where South Lake Tahoe is located. This is the area most easily reached from Sacramento)
  • Nevada's South Shore (which includes Stateline and Zephyr Cove)

Thanks to it's altitude, Lake Tahoe has basically two seasons, and they can be categorized by the types of activities you'll likely find available.

November to April sees highs that average between 49F (November), 41F (in January) and 53F (April), with average snowfalls of 125 inches at lake level. At alpine skiing levels, resorts boast of 100 inch to 200 inch bases!

What is there to do in Lake Tahoe California in the winter?

Well, alpine skiing, as you would imagine (there are some great ski resorts in Tahoe), but also: Nordic skiing, cross-country skiing, snowboarding, terrain parks (for jibbers and jumpers), snowmobiling, sleigh rides, dog sledding, and just plain ol' playin' in the snow!

About the only winter sport you can't do is ice skating on the lake - for the simple reason that the lake never freezes (because of its depth and the fact that cold water sinks, pushing the warm water from below up, there's too much movement for the water to freeze)! But there is ice skating elsewhere.

From May to October, on the other hand, you'll experience highs averaging from 61F (in May), to 79F (in July and August), and back to 62F (in October): very balmy weather for such altitudes, indeed.

And what is there to do during the summer months? That's easy!

Try your hand at: river and whitewater rafting, golfing at some of the most beautiful courses in the world, para-sailing, pedal boating, or water skiing.

Then there's wake boarding, kayaking, jet-skiing, canoeing, windsurfing, Lake Tahoe California fishing, cruising aboard a paddle boat, hiking, mountain biking, camping, or simply lolling on a beach and enjoying the sun!

There's so much to discover in the Lake Tahoe area - here's a start with it's Winter sports resorts:

  • Lake Tahoe Ski Resorts
    Not only about skiing anymore, Lake Tahoe ski resorts are also about snowboarding, terrain parks, snowshoeing, free-styling, night skiing, even dog sledding!

Please continue your exploration of what Northern California has to offer by using the Nav Bars in the left and right columns or by using the links at the bottom of the page.

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