Coming to Lake Tahoe is on many personal bucket lists. Warning! Once here, your bucket list is likely to include “live in Lake Tahoe!” Whether you’re here for a visit or to stay, these are the 10 Must-DO activities for your North Lake Tahoe Bucket List. There is something for every skill level and if you aspire to each one of these…. Call me, I’d love to help you buy here!
- Hike Castle Peak Trail. Rated as difficult, this hike is only 5.8 miles out and back, mostly because the last leg of the journey is quite vertical with a 1300’ gain within 2 miles. The view at the top – the peak is 9100’ – is well worth the effort. Take a lunch and have a picnic or spend some time appreciating the mountainous panorama. Only accessible from March until October, the spring wildflower season is a favorite time to make the trek. Leashed dogs are welcome.
- Ski the Mount Pluto Summit at Northstar. Almost all of our ski resorts have gasp-inspiring views as you make your way up or down the mountain. Heavenly Resort in South Lake Tahoe is renowned for its lake views, but the reason we chose Northstar was the combination of the black diamond runs plus Lake Tahoe, Martis Valley & Sierra Mountain views. Swooshing this part of the mountain is not for the intermittent skier! If you’re a hardcore ski enthusiast, the black diamond trails should not be missed. If you’re not experienced, head over to Homewood where the meandering trails give the illusion that you’ll ski straight into Lake Tahoe.
- Fish Lake Tahoe. Fishing here is not for the faint of heart. It takes some specialized gear and a boat. Did we mention that Lake Tahoe is the second DEEPEST inland lake in the United States and the tenth deepest worldwide?! As a result, the Mackinaw (Lake Trout) and the Kokonee (Salmon) reside 80 to 200 feet below the surface. If you don’t have a boat or are not familiar with the area, we highly recommend hiring a fishing charter to help with your success. If standing on a riverbank casting your rod into the moving waters is more your style, consider the Truckee River early in the morning or evening. Look for the deeper pools along the river’s route. Remember that all fisherperson’s must have a fishing license before casting into California or Nevada waters.
- Jump off the Sand Harbor Beach rocks into Lake Tahoe. The signature Lake Tahoe rocks are easy to spot above and just below the surface of the stunning blue-green lake. The shallow waters make it ideal for the little ones too. If you’re looking for a beach that’s a little more risqué, ask about Secret Cove which is a 3.4-mile drive to the south. Both beaches are in North Tahoe on the Nevada side of the lake.
- Swim, paddleboard or kayak an alpine lake. Lake Tahoe is the largest Alpine Lake in North America. If you prefer a smaller body of water to test your large motor skills, head to Donner Lake. Donner Lake is close to the Town of Truckee and is only 3 miles long and .75 miles wide. It is a natural alpine lake so the water is clear and cool. It’s an average of 6 degrees warmer than Lake Tahoe so many races and distance events are held here. There are multiple access points for you to put your SUP or kayak in or to enjoy a leisurely swim.
- Jet ski, waterski, or wakeboard Lake Tahoe. If you like speed, then strapping some boards onto your feet and hitting the water is a fun way to relax! Wakeboards are very popular these days as well. Whether you have a boat or a jet ski, getting out on the lake in the summertime is a favorite event for our locals and part-time residents. There are designated public lake access points and also the opportunity to rent boats and jet skis.
- Snowshoe in a winter wonderland. There’s nothing like the quiet forest when sounds are muffled by heavy snow. There are many places and options for you to experience backcountry snowshoeing in North Lake Tahoe, but if I had to choose one trail it would be the trail to the Martis Peak Fire Lookout. Just under 8 miles round trip, it is an incline most of the way in but the views from the lookout are stunning! Stop awhile before descending the 4 miles back. Dogs are allowed, keep an ear out for snowmobiles since you’ll be sharing the trails. com has a thorough description and gorgeous pictures.
- Mountain Bike Flume Trail in Nevada. Is a 14 mile ride, one way. Shuttles are available if you decide not to travel both ways. The trail begins at 7000 feet and you ride another 1000 feet to the top. Portions of the trail are single file only and offer stunning views of Lake Tahoe. Check out com for a more detailed overview of the trail.
- Walk or run along the Truckee River. For those of us living here, the Truckee River is a daily part of our lives, so taking a walk or hike along its shores is as important as that morning cup of coffee. The Truckee River Legacy Trail project has been expanding and linking trails along the Truckee River for our biking, walking and running pleasure. If you like to walk, run or bike, be sure to check out this community trail through one of its access points between Brockway Rad at the ball field and Glenshire Drive near the subdivision entrance.
- Cross country skiing. There are many options for cross country skiing in the woods but we are very proud of Tahoe Donner Cross Country ski area with its 62 miles of beautifully groomed trails. Considered a top Cross Country ski area in the USA, it has trails for the beginner and the expert who wants a little more of a challenge. And the next best part? Warming huts and après ski!
As you can see there is something you can check off your Tahoe bucket list in every season, and why we live here year-round.