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Tahoe Arts and Mountain Culture
Tahoe Arts and Mountain Culture
Lake Tahoe and Truckee outdoor recreation and activities.

Tahoe Bike Challenge June 1-14

Nothing beats riding a bike around town to hear the spring birds and watch the wild flowers pop.  Here’s another reason to grab another gear.

The 2016 Tahoe Bike Challenge takes place June 1 through June 14, 2016.

This non-competitive, competitive :) event encourages everyone to park the car, and ride a bike.  Whether you’re headed to work, school, the post office or just riding to have fun, grab your bike to stay healthy, Keep Tahoe Blue, and to win prizes.

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Alpine Sierra Trailblazer features Hope Valley Rim Trail and Markleeville

Alpine Sierra Trailblazer book Tahoe CultureThis 25th Anniversary (seventh) edition of Alpine Sierra Trailblazer includes the new Hope Valley Rim Trail, a 33-mile route that takes in all the streams, rivers and passes around the Sierra’s most pristine meadowlands. A historic tour of Markleeville joins five other new trailheads, dozens of fresh photographs, and a new color insert in this completely revised and updated 2016 edition.

Trailblazer also directs adventurers to the Yosemite High Country, all around Lake Tahoe, Grover Hot Springs, Carson Pass, Monitor Pass, Carson River, Wolf Creek, Ebbetts Pass, Bear Valley, Kirkwood, Mokelumne River, plus Desolation Wilderness, Sonora Pass, Bodie, Mono Lake, Tioga Pass.  Available at Sorensen’s Resort.

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Native Species Festival Taylor Creek June 12

Learn about native plants, birds and animals at the Native Species Festival presented by the USFS from 10am-4pm on June 12 at the Taylor Creek Visitor Center.

Visit educational booths set up by public agencies and nonprofits to learn more about Lake Tahoe’s native plants and animals, including black bears, bats, beaver, and Tahoe yellow cress.

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Tahoe Institute for Natural Science Events

Enjoy a great day outdoors while soaking up some knowledge about the beautiful area you call home with the Tahoe Institute for Natural Science (TINS).

TINS hosts several activities and events to bring Tahoe’s natural history, science, and conservation issues to the public through walks and talks, citizen science programs, or other special events such as wildflower tours.

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National Trails Day at Spooner Lake State Park June 4

Join the Tahoe Rim Trail Association for the annual National Trails Day® event on Saturday, June 4th, 2016, from 9am-NOON at Spooner Lake State Park. This free event is open to the public and will include: access to nearby trails, Leave No Trace activities, educational talks & booths related to the outdoors, free gear demos, free giveaways and a special appearance from TRTA trail mascot, McLeod the Marmot.

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Thunderbird Paddling Festival June 11

Paddlers and Tahoe Keepers will gather at Sand Harbor State Park on the east shore for the annual Thunderbird Paddling Festival on Saturday, June 11, 2016.

You choose from an 8 mile or 4 mile round trip paddle that starts at Sand Harbor State Park, heads south to Chimney Beach past historic Thunderbird Lodge, and back.  There’s also a 2-mile race for kids 12 years old and younger.

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Lake Tahoe Bird Festival June 11

LTBF scope at observation platformFlock to Taylor Creek Visitor Center for the annual Lake Tahoe Bird Festival on Saturday, June 11, 2016 from 10 am to 3:30 pm.

The Tahoe Institute for Natural Science, in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit (LTBM), invites everyone to this free event for fun and educational walks, workshops, educational activities and live bird demonstrations. read more →

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Ride the Wild Sierra June 25

South Lake Tahoe’s road bicycling club, Alta Alpina, has put together four different epic bike rides on 1 day so cyclists can challenge themselves at their own pace.

Build Your Own Challenge, Kid Carson Challenge, Wild Sierra Century and the 8 Pass Challenge “The World’s Toughest Double Century” all take place June 25, 2016.

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Donner Lake Paddle Race May 21

Donner Lake RaceIf you’re looking for a different kind of intense workout, check this out.  The Annual Donner Lake Memorial Weekend Stand-up/Prone Paddleboard Race takes place Saturday, May 21, 2016 at 9am. It’s part of the Tahoe Cup Paddle Board Race Series.

Better check weather conditions first…you may be wearing your dry suit or ski gear.  Only in Tahoe.

Be sure and clean, drain and dry your paddleboard before you jump in the lake, and become a Tahoe Keeper today.

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History of Lake Tahoe Mountain Biking at Sierra Ski and Cycle Works

Gary Bell early mountain bikes of Lake TahoeThe History of Lake Tahoe Mountain Biking Exhibit is on display daily at Sierra Ski and Cycle Works, owned by South Lake Tahoe mountain bike pioneer, Gary Bell.

“I want to help people understand the roots of Tahoe mountain biking, and how it’s evolved over the past three decades,” says Bell. As the unofficial official Tahoe bike and ski museum, you’ll find all sorts of locals sharing trail tales, and Santa Cruz bikes.

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Seasonal Climbing Closure at Donner Summit

Donner Summit Climbing Protected

To protect nesting peregrine falcons, certain climbing routes on Donner Summit’s Black Wall are closed until mid-summer.

Each year, volunteers with the Truckee Donner Land Trust and Access Fund monitor Donner Summit climbing areas for nesting raptors. A peregrine falcon nest with chicks has been located at the recently conserved Black Wall climbing area.

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How to Mountain Bike and Rules of the Trail

Sierra Ski and Cycle Works Monument PeakRide It. Don’t Slide. Use both brakes.  Go over snow, not around it.

Yield to Hikers and Horses, and uphill riders, and learn how to use both brakes.  And, if you leave a skid, please stop and fix it.

Contact the Tahoe Area Mountain Biking Association (TAMBA) for their Rider Education Program and to help work on trails. Respect.

Become part of Tahoe Bike Culture and join other bikers to promote good trail etiquette that will keep our trails open that TAMBA members worked desperately hard to secure since 1988.

Check out www.mountainbiketahoe.org for trail conditions, news, and to see the impressive list of projects. read more →

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Birding Hot Spots

Spring Birding Hot Spots in South Tahoe Area

by Sue Stevenson, South Shore artist and avid birder

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Golfing for Schools Cards on Sale

coyotemoonYou’ve heard of our Skiing for Schools program, now it’s time to golf to support North Lake Tahoe and Truckee schools with the 2016 Golfing for Schools card.

The $325 transferable cards are an excellent value and are valid for 18-holes of play at seven of North Tahoe and Truckee’s premiere golf courses including Coyote Moon, Northstar, Old Greenwood, Resort at Squaw Creek, Tahoe City, Tahoe Donner and Gray’s Crossing. read more →

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2016 Tahoe Rim Trail Youth Backcountry Camps

Map and compass orienteering. Wildlife, flora and fauna identification. Astronomy.

It’s all part of the Tahoe Rim Trail and Tahoe Institute for Natural Science youth backcountry summer camps. Get in tune with your senses and explore Tahoe with a wildlife tracker’s state of mind! This 3-day program will introduce teens (ages 12-14) to the wild inhabitants of the Tahoe Basin, how we can recognize their signs, scat, and learn why they can’t always be seen.

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Gunbarrel 25 at Heavenly April 2

GB 25 Glen Plake by Heavenly Ski ResortDo laps all day with Glen Plake at his 9th annual mogul marathon on one of North America’s toughest black-diamond bump runs, Gunbarrel, at Heavenly in South Lake Tahoe.

GB25 takes place Saturday, April 2, 2016. ♦

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Free Avalanche Workshop at Squaw April 15

When disaster strikes, be ready to be the one who saves your friend’s life, including your dog’s life.

Learn how to correctly use an avalanche beacon at the free monthly clinic at Squaw on April 15 sponsored by the Squaw elite team – Squaw Dogs.  The workshop takes place from 5:30-7:30pm at Ski Patrol Base in the Red Dog Complex.

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The GREAT Ski Race March 6

The Great Ski Race in North Lake TahoeThe fastest time to ski from Tahoe City to Truckee is 1 hour and 7 minutes to race 30 kilometers or 18.43 miles. Shizam! It all began in 1976 with only 66 racers.

Today, thousands of skiers participate in The GREAT Ski Race to raise money for the Tahoe Nordic Search and Rescue Team. Don’t miss the largest Nordic ski race west of the Mississippi on Sunday, March 6th starting at 9am. read more →

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Rahlves’ Banzai Tour March 5-6 Sugar Bowl

Daron-Rahlves-Silver-Belt-photo-by-Court-LeveDaron Rahlves, four-time Olympian, World Champion and Truckee local, has refined the classic Silver Belt race that started at Sugar Bowl in the 1940s.  Now called the “Banzai Tour,” the event mixes big mountain freeride action with ski and boarder-cross strategy in a mad-dash race series held at four ski resorts.

The competition finals take place at Sugar Bowl on March 5 and 6, 2016.

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Sierra Avalanche Center is Our Lifeline

Backcountry skiing and riding are sweet! Avalanches are not. Don’t get caught.

Check the Sierra Avalanche Center website link daily, and attend an avalanche safety awareness class now!

And donate to SAC or buy a discounted ski ticket. All sales go to SAC, our backcountry life line.

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Tahoe Rim Trail Snowshoe Hikes

The Tahoe Rim Trail Association is offering free guided snowshoe treks along the famous trail that winds 165 miles around Lake Tahoe. From enchanting forests to mesmerizing vistas and towering peaks, it’s no wonder everyone loves this trail.  These snowshoe hikes are great for all abilities (shorter hikes are appropriate for kids). Discover this fun and easy way to exercise and socialize during the winter months in Lake Tahoe.

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Skiing with Your Dog at Lake Tahoe

While you can’t take your dog to most cross-country ski areas in Lake Tahoe and Truckee, you can take them on a few developed trails and almost anywhere else.

Here are some key spots where you can safely cross-country ski with your dog.  Don’t forget the poop bag!

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Volunteer for Bald Eagle Count Jan 8

Bald Eagle at Pope Marsh Dec 15As part of a national survey effort monitoring the recovery of Bald Eagle populations, the Tahoe Institute for Natural Science (TINS) is seeking volunteers to assist with the annual Mid-winter Bald Eagle Count on January 8, 2016 from 9am to 12pm. Volunteers will be responsible for counting all bald eagles at one of 26 sites distributed around the Lake Tahoe shoreline during a three-hour period on the morning of the count.  Click here for map locations.

I see Bald Eagles every time I go to the lake.  Magical.

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LT Community College Nordic Trail Open

Tallac Historic Site BoatHouse Theater Tahoe CultureThe Nordic Ski Center at Lake Tahoe Community College is open and offers classic cross country and skate skiers breathtaking views and great exercise right in the heart of town. Managed by the college’s CONNECT Community Education program, the Nordic Center offers a number of affordable passes for the entire season or for single day use.

Need equipment?  No problem.  Rent skis from Sierra Ski and Cycle Works next to Safeway.

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Ski to Benefit Schools with Discounted Tickets. DUH!

Gary Bell of Sierra Ski and Cycle Works supports Tahoe SchoolsIt’s a no brainer.  Ski or board at our Lake Tahoe ski and cross-country resorts with special discounted lift tickets and help our local schools.

It’s part of the Tahoe Truckee Excellence in Education Foundation Skiing (TTEEF) for Schools Days – woohoo! – that TAMC and locals love to support.

The benefits are endless.  Get smart and buy your TTEEF ticket today.  Schools matter.

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So Lake Tahoe Christmas Bird Count Dec 14

The South Lake Tahoe Christmas Bird Count on Monday, December 14th, will be held from 8am until sundown, is a chance to do some birding in the winter, socialize with other birders and contribute to the largest, longest running citizen science program in the world.

Novices to experts are all welcome for this fun winter event that focuses the 7.5 mile radius count circle on the Upper Truckee River mouth at Cove East.

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Warren Miller’s “Chasing Shadows” Dec 4-5 MontBleu

Warren Miller Chasing ShadowsIt’s the official beginning of winter for many skiers and snowboarders.

Warren Miller’s 66th movie, Chasing Shadows, features big mountain skiing with local skiers and riders from Lake Tahoe at the most exotic settings imaginable. Chasing Shadow pays homage to the 66 years of mountain culture and adventure filmmaking that has lead Warren Miller to every end of the winter world.

The movie will play at MontBleu Dec 4 and 5, at 7:30 PM.

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Free Avalanche Education Classes at TMS in Truckee Dec 9

Sierra Ski and Cycle Works DroppingWith forecasts of El Niño ushering a potentially epic winter into the Sierra, Tahoe Mountain Sports’ upcoming Avalanche Education Series will help ensure the safety of you and your backcountry partners.  Tahoe Mountain Sports’ 2015-16 Avy Education Series presented by Ortovox is a free, three-part opportunity to learn practices that can keep you safe while participating in backcountry snow sports.  Raffles will benefit Sierra Avalanche Center.

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Off the Beaten Path Adventure Cycling Film by Fast Track Productions

First Track Production Off the Beaten Path First Track Productions, South Lake Tahoe’s premiere sports and lifestyle video production firm, has just released “Off the Beaten Path,” an adventure cycling covering the globe from our home, Lake Tahoe, to Iceland and beyond.

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Getting Lost in a Winter Wonderland by Robert Frohlich

Opie Lost Trial LodgeUpon arriving to the Lost Trail Lodge, the first person to greet you isn’t a person at all, but a Great Pyranees named Opie. The giant yet gentle dog’s immediate friendship is a hearty welcome within the wilderness setting and creates an easy, relaxed tone for one of snow season’s most unique getaways.

“I named this place Lost Trail because people are always getting lost off the backside of Sugar Bowl or along the Pacific Crest Trail and somehow end up here,” explains David Robertson, owner and operator of the wilderness outpost.

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Wilderness First Aid WMI Course Dec 5-6

Wilderness First Responders Tahoe CultureThe Tahoe Rim Trail Association is hosting a two-day Wilderness First Aid course taught by the Wilderness Medicine Institute of NOLS Saturday and Sunday, Dec 5-6, 2015 from 8:00am- 5:00pm.  This course will provide individuals with a foundation in important first aid concepts critical to responding effectively to emergencies in a remote backcountry environment.

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Tahoe Bike Culture by the Spoke Junkie

When you see the word “culture”, what comes to mind?

Music, art, higher education, the Byzantine Era, a dark gray blob growing in the bottom of a petri dish in science class. read more →

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Van Sickle Trail Info at Explore Tahoe

Located on the bottom floor of the Heavenly Village Transit Center, Explore Tahoe showcases a wealth of natural history, recreation and transportation information, along with environmental educational programs geared for all ages.

Explore Tahoe has also been a very big supporter of the new Van Sickle Bi-State Park and multi-use trail right in its backyard.

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Fall Foliage Viewing Areas

Fall is one of our favorite times to spot the abundant Aspen groves surrounding Lake Tahoe. Now ablaze in gold, sprinkled with orange and red, it’s time to take a hike through our enchanting fall foliage landscapes and listen to the sounds of nature.

Still some colors around Tahoe, as well as bald eagles, bears and blue heron at Taylor Creek grabbing salmon.

Following are directions to great spots to view fall foliage in the Lake Tahoe Basin.

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Fall Migration at Spooner Lake with TINS Sept 12

The Tahoe Institute for Natural Science (TINS), Lahontan Audubon Society (LAS) and Tahoe Rim Trail Association (TRTA) are co-sponsoring this easy stroll to search for migrant birds heading south for the winter on Saturday, September 12, from 8:30am to 11:30am.

You will search the aspen stand, willows, and the lake for any migrants and local birds, such as Orange-crowned and Wilson’s Warblers, White-crowned Sparrows, Green-tailed Towhees, Ring-necked Ducks, and Red-breasted Sapsuckers.  read more →

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Van Sickle Trail Volunteer Workdays

Join the Tahoe Rim Trail Association for volunteer trail building workdays in Stateline, Nevada in South Lake Tahoe at Van Sickle.  Learn new skills, meet like minded trail enthusiasts, and give back to your community by joining a volunteer trail crew! read more →

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Bike Parade with Slow Rollers Sept 19

Join the Slow Rollers for the City Parade on September 19, 2015 to celebrate the 50th year of South Lake Tahoe.

Parade starts at 10 am at the Y and goes to the Bijou Park for the bike park grand opening.  Spruce up your bike, put on your costume and ride with Slow Rollers.

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Learn To Backpack Aug 28-30

If you’ve wanted to try backpacking, but weren’t quite sure how to get started check out the Tahoe Rim Trail Backcountry Trails Camp which will be held near Armstrong Pass on August 28th through August 30th.

This is a great opportunity to meet new people, work up a sweat, enjoy a few nights out under the stars, and show your appreciation and support for the Tahoe Rim Trail. read more →

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Free Guided Hikes on the Tahoe Rim Trail Aug-Sept

Enjoy birds, fall colors, big forests of Sugar Pine and breathtaking views during free guided hikes on the Tahoe Rim Trail during August and September.

Bring your binoculars to learn more about the Mountain Bluebird, Red-Breasted Sapsucker, MacGillivray’s Warbler, Black-backed Woodpecker, and Pine Grosbeak, as you stroll through flower-covered alpine meadows.

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Concours d’Elegance August 7-8

Lake Tahoe Concours d'EleganceExotic wooden boats mark our nautical history in style especially during this favorite event where you can drool over 70 of the finest and rarest wooden boats in the world. Obexer’s Boat Company, home of the first wooden boat dealership on Lake Tahoe, will be the site of the annual Lake Tahoe Concours d’Elegance, August 7 and 8, 2015.

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Ta-hoe Nalu Paddle Festival Aug 14-16

2014 5mie-0146 Tahoe Nalu photosThe biggest paddle board festival on Lake Tahoe just got bigger.

The Ta-Hoe Nalu Stand-up Paddle Board Festival features two-days of races for paddle boarders of all ages and skill levels. Lakeside entertainment including food, luaus, live music and prizes will top off the races held at Kings Beach August 14 through 16th.

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Meyers Mountain Bike Festival Aug 8-9

Gary Bell early mountain bikes of Lake TahoeThe Annual Meyers Mountain Bike Festival will take place on August 8 and 9, 2015 in the Divided Sky parking lot. The festival includes the  infamous “Triple Crown Ride” covering 30+ miles and a 5,200 elevation gain.  Lots of music, food, drinks and events for all ages.

Sierra Ski and Cycle Works is sponsoring a History of Lake Tahoe Mountain Biking exhibit on Sunday, August 9, 2015.  Here’s your chance to the see the first Lake Tahoe mountain bike, Clunker, and meet a slew of early mountain bike pioneers including Gary Bell and Don Koski from Cove Bike Shop in Tiburon.

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Northstar Mountain Bike Park is Open

BikerLake Tahoe has another reason to brag – Northstar Mountain Bike Park.

The park is considered one of the top mountain bike parks on the west coast following Whistler. The park is open so get your cross-country and downhill bikes tuned and ready to go.

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Birds, Burgers, and Brews TINS Aug 1

Birds of a feather flock together on the Tahoe Rim Trail with our favorite local naturalists, Will and Clark, of Tahoe Institute for Natural Science during their annual Birds, Burgers and Brews event on August 1, 2015.

Sign up for three different birding tours around Lake Tahoe and Truckee and enjoy local craft brews and burgers as we all converge at 64 Acres in Tahoe City (next to the Transit Center) in the afternoon. read more →

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Tahoe Rim Trail Challenge Guided Hike from Big Meadow to Round Lake Sept 26

WinterwearingMcLeodAre you a Tahoe Rim Trail Challenger looking for a guided experience as you complete your 6 challenge hikes?

If so, then join the Tahoe Rim Trail Association on challenge site #3! This challenge hike is moderate in difficulty with a total elevation of 1,000 feet. read more →

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Summer Full Moon Hikes with the Tahoe Rim Trail

Experience the peace, tranquility and beauty of Lake Tahoe by moonlight during these summer full moon hikes led by experienced Tahoe Rim Trail guides.  Expect casually paced hikes for all ages, while slowing down to enjoy inspiring views as the moon rises over Lake Tahoe, flora and fauna, current happenings in the natural world and nighttime senses. Bring a flashlight, layered clothing and water.

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Full Moon Hike to Brockway Vista Sept 26

Experience the beauty that fall offers in Lake Tahoe on this full moon hike at Brockway Vista on September 26, 2015. We will begin our trek watching the sunset and the moon rise as we hike up to a stunning vista that will wind through a beautiful wooded forest. Expect a casually paced hike for all ages. Don’t worry, we’ll have headlamps on standby!

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Summer Avian Visitors: Birding at Lake Tahoe with TINS

Summer is a perfect time to learn about birds that migrate to Lake Tahoe for the season – and boy are they noisy this year. Join Kirk Hardie, Co- Executive Director of the Tahoe Institute for Natural Science for bird watching walks to introduce us to the migratory birds of the Lake Tahoe region.

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Full Moon Paddle with Kayak Tahoe July 30

rickgunnkayakingAfter that big wildflower hike through lupine, penstemon and mule ears, it’s time to get on the lake for a favorite summer pastime.  A full moon kayak tour.

Watching the moon rise over Freel Peak, bright blue skies transform into alpenglow then moonlight, there isn’t a more spectacular time to be on Lake Tahoe.

Join Kayak Tahoe for a two hour casual paddle on July 30.

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South Tahoe Wooden Boat Classic July 24-25

Indulge in a classic Tahoe tradition July 24 and 25 at the Tahoe Keys Marina in South Lake Tahoe during the antique wooden boat show. Along with the mixture of masterfully restored boats, you’ll also find live music, a beer tasting village and lots of food and family-friendly events.

This year’s theme, “50s & Fins”, will honor those boats built between 1950 and 1959.

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We live in a special place. A place so beautiful it nurtures the soul and creative spirit. A place so breathtaking it inspires conservation. A mountain culture that masters the fine art of living. Welcome to this place we call home. Welcome to Lake Tahoe. Meet the local artists, individuals, businesses and events that define our unique mountain culture and embody Tahoe's creative and entrepreneurial spirit.
Obexer's West Shore Lake Tahoe since 1911
Coffeebar Truckee loves Tahoe Culture by Travis
Fall at Lake Tahoe
Emerald Bay
Bear at Taylor Creek Lake Tahoe
Angora Fire Lookout
Tahoe Culture Fall Glory
Plein Air at Lily Lake at South Lake Tahoe
Alder Peak LO


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