Huge Fun At Big Water

Lake Tahoe was called "Big Water" by the Paiute Indians who fished and hunted in the area long before it became a destination resort. Today, perhaps "Huge Fun" would be a more appropriate nickname.


Huge Fun At Big Water

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by James Vaughn on March 1, 2001

Lake Tahoe was called "Big Water" by the Paiute Indians who fished and hunted in the area long before it became a destination resort. Today, perhaps "Huge Fun" would be a more appropriate nickname. There is something here for everyone, although I prefer the low-key, less commercialized California side over the cheesy glitz of the Nevada casinos. The scenery is outstanding, and there are plenty of activities for the adventurous traveler. Our week there was spent primarily snowboarding, and the conditions were amazing since the season's biggest storm hit the day we arrived. We also managed to take a day off for a snowmobile tour and some sight seeing. In the summer, there are mountain biking and hiking trails, sailing, and fishing on and around the lake.${QuickSuggestions} ${BestWay} I recommend a four wheel drive rental vehicle if you visit in the winter. The last thing you want is to be stuck in your condo or house when the area is getting the biggest snowfall of the season. I recommend getting the rental car insurance though, since the roads and parking lots can be very slippery (as we unfortunately found out).

West Lake Properties (Private Home Rentals)

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by James Vaughn on March 1, 2001

Various well equipped private homes are available for rent through West Lake Properties, located at the intersection of Route 89 and Route 28 in Tahoe City. We were able to rent a 2 BR, 2 Bath home within walking distance of the lake for only $160 a night plus a small cleaning fee. It was equipped with a full kitchen, laundry facilities, and a cozy wood stove. Located just outside of Tahoe City, it made a great home base for snowboarding and skiing at Alpine Meadows and Squaw Valley Resorts. It was also convenient to the restuarants and shops in Tahoe City.
West Lake Properties (Private Home Rentals)
115 West Lake Blvd.
Lake Tahoe, California
(530) 583-0268

Jake's on the Lake

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by James Vaughn on March 1, 2001

Jake's was probably my favorite restaurant we visited during our visit. Although reservations are not always required, it's worth calling ahead to make sure you get a window seat overlooking the lake. Jake's especially known for its fresh seafood, and I heartily recommend the Seven Spice Ahi. Whatever you decide to order, make sure you save room for a slice of Hula Pie for dessert. The Hula Pie is well known around Tahoe City, and many local shops give away coupons which entitle you to two slices for the price of one.
Jakes on the Lake
780 North Lake Boulevard
Tahoe City, California, 96145
(530) 583-0188

River Ranch Lodge & Restaurant

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by James Vaughn on March 1, 2001

Located at the intersection of Route 89 and Alpine Meadows Road, the River Ranch Lodge & Restaurant is truly a fine dining experience. Although we went on Valentine's Day when the restaurant was packed, we still received excellent service. One of their specials was a mouthwatering Chateubriand for two, although there are also other excellent entrees (such as the Pepper Steak) available regularly. Also, don't forget to wash it down with a glass (or bottle) of their house Cabernet Sauvignon.
River Ranch Lodge & Restaurant
2285 River Road
Lake Tahoe, California
(530) 583 -4264

Fast Eddie's

Member Rating 3 out of 5 by James Vaughn on March 1, 2001

Fast Eddies is the place to go if you're in the mood for ribs. It is reasonably priced, casual, and nobody, I repeat, nobody leaves hungry. You can order beef ribs, pork ribs, brisket, or a wide selection of other entrees. The salad bar could be improved, but hey, you come here for the ribs, not for healthy quisine. The service is quick and are waitresses friendly... what more could you ask for after a long day on the slopes?
Fast Eddie's Texas Style Bar-B-Q
690 North Lake Blvd
Tahoe City, California, 96145
+1 530 583 0950

Squaw Valley

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by James Vaughn on March 1, 2001

Our first visit to Squaw Valley was in the middle of a two-day storm that dumped almost 6 feet of snow. Although most of the high peaks were closed for avalanche control, KT-22 was open and the conditions were phenomenal. Nothing compares to snowboarding in powder up to your waist, and at times even deeper. Make sure you ride with a buddy in conditions like these, however. (You might need someone to dig you out if you end up upside down in 6 feet of snow with a snowboard attached to your feet.) Lift tickets are a bit pricey here, but on an epic powder day like the one we experienced, they could have charged much more and I still would have paid it. Although Squaw Valley is one of the more popular resorts in the Lake Tahoe area, the crowds seem to be well dispersed due to its fast lift system and the sheer size of the resort. Even the ski area food was pretty good, and not as expensive as I expected. If you are not a snowboarder or skier, there are still plenty of activities to keep you busy. You can take the cable car to the High Camp area, where you can enjoy ice skating, snowtubing, or swimming. You can also visit the Olympic Museum (the 1960 Winter Olympics were held here), or just take in the view from one of the patios.
Squaw Valley
P.O. Box 2007
North Lake Tahoe, California, 96146
(530) 583-6985

Alpine Meadows

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by James Vaughn on March 1, 2001

Alpine Meadows is definitely my pick of the Lake Tahoe resorts. It is less crowded than Squaw Valley, and there is a huge variety of terrain. Everything within the resort boundary is fair game whether it is a marked trail or not. The best features of Alpine Meadows are the "adventure zones" which reward the rider with a backcountry feel in exchange for a little bit of hiking. The back bowls are a great experience, and when the high traverse is open, untouched powder (freshies) can usually be found in Wolverine Bowl, Beaver Bowl, and Estelle Bowl. If you're looking for challenging tree runs or want to do some cliff hucking, head to the Promised Land. Another interesting run is Hot Wheels Gulley, a natural "half pipe" where you can bank turns and catch air at high speeds. Be forewarned, however, there are hairpin turns and obstacles such as trees and rocks just to keep things interesting.
Alpine Meadows Ski Resort
2600 Alpine Meadows Road
Tahoe City, California, 96174
+1 530 583 4232

T.C. Sno Mo's Snowmobile Tours

Member Rating 3 out of 5 by James Vaughn on March 1, 2001

If you want to take a break from snowboarding/skiing and would like to take in some beautiful scenery, give T.C. Sno Mo's a call. We arranged a half day guided snowmobile tour, which cost about $100 for each snowmobile rented. Our guide took us through the National Forest area to Mount Watson. From the peak of this mountain, you can see most of Lake Tahoe on a clear day. After taking in the view, we stopped at a high meadow where our guide turned us loose to play in the powder. Be careful with the equipment though. As a warning to potentially out-of-control riders, there is a sign posted in the office listing replacement costs for various items ranging from a windshield ($75) to an entire snowmobile ($4500, yikes!!).
T.C. Sno Mo's Snowmobile Tours
251 N. Lake Blvd.
Lake Tahoe, California, 96151

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