North Lake Tahoe is known for outdoor adventures. But, something that makes those activity-filled days even more fun is spotting wildflowers along the way. We’ve put together a list of four of our favorite spots to see wildflowers on your next spring hike. From Lake Tahoe Lupine to Mule Ears to Sierra Tiger Lily, you’ll be sure to have a day filled with beauty.
Photo: Macs Explores
Our first stop is Monkey Rock on the Nevada side of North Lake Tahoe in Incline Village. It’s a fun and quick hike with fantastic views of Lake Tahoe. The 2.5 mile round trip hike has an elevation gain of over 400 feet along the way, so your slow steady pace will give you ample opportunity to take it all in. The Monkey Rock trail name is literal, and you’ll be rewarded for your hike with a rock that looks like a monkey’s head taking in the gorgeous view. On your way back to the car, stop by Tunnel Creek Café for a snack and a cold beverage.
Photo: Outdoor Project
Another fantastic hike on the Nevada side is the Mt. Rose trail. This hike is a full day commitment – at 11 miles roundtrip with 2,500 feet of elevation gain – and will take about 6 hours. Be sure to take plenty of water and snacks for your journey to the top of the third tallest peak in the Lake Tahoe Basin. From the top you can see well beyond Reno, over Lake Tahoe and on a very clear day you can even catch a glimpse of Mount Shasta. Along the way you’ll pass the Galena Falls area which puts on quite the gorgeous spring wildflower display.
When you make your way back through Incline Village after a long day of hiking, make sure to make a pit stop for some food and drinks. Our favorite spot to stop is the Alibi Ale Works – Incline Public House where you can enjoy a Wagyu Beef Cheeseburger and a pint of one of their many locally-brewed beers. Cheers!
Photo: Palisades Tahoe
Our favorite spring hike in North Lake Tahoe has to be Shirley Canyon trail. Located in the Olympic Valley, it winds its way along a creek full of spring runoff including beautiful waterfalls. The rushing water is gorgeous, but don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for wildflowers including pink Penstemon, Mule’s Ear, Lupine, Paintbrush and more. Depending on your stamina you can choose to hike the full 5 miles to High Camp and ride the aerial tram down or make it an up and back hike to Shirley Lake.
Photo: Tahoe Activities
Make your way to the Desolation Wilderness to one of the best hikes in the area and a great location to spot wildflowers. Eagle Lake trail is just shy of 2 miles out and back so it’s a quick way to get out in the forest. If you want to bring the whole family, it’s a kid-friendly hike. Your first reward along the trail is the beautiful Eagle Falls. If you keep going, you’ll reach Eagle Lake. Take your shoes off and dip your toes in the cold water before heading back down the trail.
As our Tahoe days grow longer and the snow starts to melt away, we look forward to getting outside to enjoy warm weather activities. While some days we want to boat on the lake or hike in the woods, there are some spring days that are perfect for strolling around and shopping under the Tahoe sun. North Lake Tahoe offers some fantastic options for retail therapy. Check out some of our favorites!
Spring Shopping with your Spring Skiing
Photo: Palisades Tahoe
Not only does Palisades Tahoe attract Olympic-bound athletes to its slopes, but it also draws shoppers from around the region. From jeans to technical gear and original art pieces to pajamas & bath bombs, the Village at Palisades Tahoe has some fantastic options.
Stop in Gallery Keoki with its selection of original photography so you can pick up a gift for a friend or a limited-edition print to hang over your mantle. Whether you’re a world traveler or a dog lover at heart, it’s worth a stop.
Next make your way to the one stop shop in for some serious self care! Lather & Fizz Bath Boutique specializes in relaxing after a day of skiing with handmade bath & body products and even the pjs to wear after you’re done with your day of skiing and shopping.
Or if you’re enjoying a day of spring skiing at Northstar California instead, why not mix in another sport on your family-friendly shopping day? After your family day of fun on the slopes, make your way to the ice skating rink in the middle of the Village at Northstar with some shopping along the way. Just be sure to swing by the Bigtruck Hat Bar with the whole crew for the unique opportunity to design your own custom hat.
Around the Lake & Beyond
Photo: Ruffles & Ruffnecks
If you like your spring shopping with gorgeous lake views, it’s time to cruise around the lake. The first stop is Tahoe City, especially if you have some kiddos in your life. Ruffles & Ruffnecks has been helping children and infants stay stylish for over 40 years. Cruise around the rest of the Cobblestone Center and beyond before you make your way to Kings Beach. A local favorite for 25 years, The Robins Nest has a gift for everyone on your list and is worth the stop. Or, if you’re in the market for a new SUP board and all the gear to go with it, we recommend a stop at Adrift Tahoe before you take your maiden voyage on Lake Tahoe.
Be sure to end your day with a stroll and dinner in charming Historic Downtown Truckee. No exploration of Truckee’s main street is complete without stopping in at Bespoke & Atelier with their unique collection of handcrafted gifts. Complete your day of shopping with a stop for art and gifts at Riverside Studios or please your inner Julia Child with some items from the Cooking Gallery or grab a new outfit for tonight’s dinner at Kalifornia Jean Bar. After your day of shopping in North Lake Tahoe, the only decision left is where to sit down and relax with a delicious dinner while taking in the beautiful alpenglow.
Arguably the best part of spring skiing is the après. From sunny slopeside sips to taking in the alpenglow over the mountains surrounding Lake Tahoe, you’ll love these Tahoe area after ski options. Whether your post-ski drink of choice is champagne or hot chocolate, you’ll enjoy all of our beautiful area’s après offerings. So, take those boots off and kick back because we’ve got you covered from Northstar California to Palisades Tahoe to the shores of Lake Tahoe.
One of our favorite Lake Tahoe ski traditions is ski-up bubbly brought to you by Tōst at Northstar California. While Northstar won’t be welcoming back Tōst until the 22/23 season, we want to make sure you mark your calendar for next spring so you can clink your glasses to a perfect day of spring skiing in 2023.
Something you won’t have to wait until next season for is après ice skating in The Village at Northstar. Whether your idea of relaxing is gliding on the ice under the night sky or cozying-up next to a firepit, this après activity is sure to please everyone in your group.
You can sum up après at Palisades Tahoe in just two words, two French words to be exact: Le Chamois. The “Chammy” is an après institution and no visit to Palisades Tahoe is complete without a beer and a lounge chair to end the day at this classic skier hangout. Only open during the ski season, the Chammy is the perfect way to end a spring day with a pitcher of beer, your ski buddies, and some sunshine.
For the hungry après skier, you’ll want to make tracks to the Wildflour Baking Company. While there are lots of delicious menu items, we recommend ordering a pizza bagel and one (or a baker’s dozen) of their legendary chocolate chip cookies. We’d argue there’s no better way to end a day at Palisades Tahoe!
Shores of Lake Tahoe
Photo: Jakes on The Lake
North Lake Tahoe has its share of fantastic ski resorts to spend your day on the slopes. But, if the lake is calling you after a day of skiing, make your way to Gar Woods. Open year round at their lakeside location, they take après ski seriously. With après drink specials on Tuesdays and Fridays and views every day of the week, this is a must stop. Locals tip: No visit is complete without ordering one of their famous Wet Woody rum drinks.
If you like your après with a view of alpenglow over Lake Tahoe, make your way to Jakes on the Lake. This family-owned restaurant has been a Tahoe City hot spot for over 40 years. Their food is the perfect companion for the warm weather of spring with menu items influenced by Hawaiian and Southern California cuisine. Sunday-Thursday evenings you can take advantage of food and drink Happy Hour prices from 4:30-6:30pm in the bar. Cheers!
We are so proud to be celebrating 50 years in the North Lake Tahoe community. From the Wells & Bennett start in Oakland in 1924, our fourth-generation family-owned company has always put family and community first in each and every one of our offices. During our 50 years in this beautiful lakeside community, we’ve been entrusted with helping community members realize their Tahoe dreams whether that’s a vacation rental for a week, a long-term ski lease for the winter or buying your dream house for a lifetime of memories.
Vacation rentals in Lake Tahoe since 1972
With over 200+ vacation rentals in our rental program, we make it easy to find a home for a weekend getaway or, if you dream of more time on the slopes, a ski lease for the winter season. Over our 50 years in Tahoe City, we’ve become a trusted brand in this community. Trust has been built by both our local maintenance team and office staff who can help with any issue or question that may come up during your stay at one of our properties. That local, boots on the ground special touch is not something you find with larger rental companies and we are proud of how that sets us apart. Whether you’re coming up for a visit to our area or leaving us to handle vacation rentals in your home, you’ll know that you’ll be taken care of.
Booking a stay with us? We’ve got more good news for you. Because we are a local, Northern California business, we charge on average, 10% less than our large corporate competitors. When you book directly with us, our team will be there for you every step of the way. So, whether you want to book a lakeside home for a family weekend or spend every spare moment of your time enjoying our community with a long term location to call home, we’re here to help make your dreams a reality.
Tahoe Real Estate Sales
When you choose to work with our Tahoe City team, you’ll benefit from our combined experience of over 41 years of home buying and selling. Our small, dedicated team has the experience and knowledge that only a local could have of the homes available and a solid history of what to expect in the North Lake Tahoe market. Along with our local expertise, you will get to take advantage of Wells & Bennett’s 95 years of real estate experience in Northern California. When you work with us, we have direct contact with our Wells & Bennett’s Bay Area offices which gives you access to both buyers and sellers from that area.
Whether you’re a buyer or a seller in our region, you’ll know you’ve got the best real estate team this area has to offer. Our agents will not only find you the home to meet your needs, but also the perfect combination of amenities, location and design to best fit who you are and exactly how you aspire to live.
We’re proud of how far we’ve come in the last 50 years, but more than anything we’re proud to be a part of this community. Thank you for being with us along the way.
Winter has officially hit North Lake Tahoe, which means endless outdoor adventures await you. It can also mean stressful travel and winter closures.To ensure you enjoy a stress free trip, we have put together helpful hints for getting here and for when you arrive.
Getting to the North Lake Tahoe region can be challenging in the winter months. There are numerous resources available to help you find the safest, fastest and easiest route to your rental. Visitors arriving from California can stay informed through the California Road Conditions website. If you are traveling from Nevada or flying through the Reno Tahoe International Airport, you can utilize the Nevada Road Conditions website.
Book in Advance
North Lake Tahoe is home to 12 ski resorts, 6 cross-country resorts and snow play activities. Due to covid-19 restrictions, we suggest you do the following to make sure you get to experience all of the dining options and activities you have on your Tahoe bucket list:
- Pre-book guided tours and pack your own equipment if you are able
- Making dining reservations in advance
- Visit all ski area websites prior to arrival – book your tickets, lessons and rentals prior to arrival
- Stay up-to-date on social media channels and business’s websites for real time information
- Set realistic expectations – expect things to move slower due to covid-19 safety measures and staffing shortages
- You may have a hard time knowing which restaurants offer take-out, we have you covered with this Take-Out Tahoe guide
Stay Safe and Book a Tour
You made it to Tahoe, now it is time to sit back and relax. Below are some of our favorite ways to enjoy Tahoe in the winter:
- Tahoe Adventure Company offers guided snowshoe tours (and sunset tours) to help you explore Tahoe safely!
- Interested in taking your backcountry gear out for a spin, but aren’t sure where to start – we recommend booking Alpenglow Expeditions for private or group backcountry skiing or guided snowshoeing tours! Not ready for the backcountry yet, no problem, they also offer avalanche and backcountry safety courses!
- Interested in a unique backcountry experience just outside of the ski boundary – look no further than booking with Sugarbowl Ski Resort. Sugarbowl maintains an open boundary policy, but advises you to keep an eye on safety conditions with Sierra Avalanche Center
We are excited to welcome you to the region, but want you to plan a safe and fun trip!
Winter has arrived in full force this year, and we couldn’t be happier! Snow is blanketing the peaks around Lake Tahoe, the village is bright with Christmas lights, and there is a distinct feeling of holiday cheer and excitement in the chilly air. If you’re joining us in Tahoe for the holidays, there are plenty of wonderful activities and fun for the whole family happening over the next two weeks, from ski resorts opening to visits from Santa, sleighrides, and more. Read on for our favorite holiday activities in Tahoe, and be sure to check out our website for all the winter activities available at this time of year.
Caroling, Sleigh Rides, and Santa!
The Village at Palisades Tahoe has a full roster of holidauy events starting December 20th and continuing through their New Years Celebration. Some highlights include: The Great Basin Carolers performing classic Christmas Carols in the Village December 20-24th, winter carriage rides through the Village December 27-31st, and a visit from Santa himself December 23-24th. If you’re in the mood for some holiday cheer, Palisades Tahoe is the place to find it! You can view their full schedule of events for the season on their website.
Snowshoe Tours and Night Sky Stargazing
If you’re eager to get out on the snow but away from the crowded slopes, there are a number of snowshoe tours operating in the area. Take a guided tour with Tahoe Adventue Company through the snowy Tahoe forest and learn about the natural history of the area, and then take a peek at some stunning stars through professional telescopes with award winning astronomer Tony Berendsen. They also offer Full Moon Snowshoe Tours – check their website for dates and price. These tours last about 4 hours, all equipment is provided, and are great fun for the whole family! Book your snowshoe adventure today!
Sledding and Tubing
All this new snow isn’t just for skiing – it also means the hills are ripe for sledding and snowtubing! Check out our list of the best sledding spots in our winter activities section, or head over to Palisades Tahoe for some fun after dark with Disco Tubing! Featuring LED lights, lasers, and a live DJ, Disco Tubing is a party on the hill! It’s happening every night from 5-8pm December 26th-31st. Advance tickets required – purchase online for your desired time slot.
Still need to cross some last-minute holiday gifts off your list? Tahoe City and Truckee both boast an impressive number of locally-owned businesses, filled with handcrafted art, jewelry, clothing, and more designed in and inspired by the Tahoe mountain community. When you shop locally, nearly 70% of your money spent stays in the community, and you are contributing to the unique mountain town atmosphere we know and love. Check out Alpenglow Sports, Bluestone Jewelry, and Tipsy Gypsy in Tahoe City for all your gifting needs.
Awesome Spots for Apres
After a long day on the slopes, shopping, or sledding, you deserve a delicious libation. Lucky for you, there is no shortage of good food and drinks in Tahoe City; the hardest part is just choosing where to go! A few of our favorite spots after shredding the slopes are: River Ranch – famous for their happy hour specials; The Tahoe Bridgetender – the classic neighborhood bar; Uncorked – for the wine-o; and Pioneer Cocktail Club – for unique and artsistic cocktails. You can also view our full list of dining recommendtions in the Explore Tahoe section of our website. Wherever you end up, cheers to spending the holidays in Tahoe!
While we got an early taste of winter this season, the weather in November has been unnaturally warm and ski resorts in Tahoe have pushed back anticipated opening dates until sometime in December. If you were set on a visit to Tahoe for the long weekend, but now not sure what you’ll do without hitting the slopes, have no fear – there are still plenty of events and outdoor activities to enjoy, even without much snowfall. Read on for the best long-weekend activities happening in Tahoe this weekend:
Welcome to Winter Festival at Palisades Tahoe
Enjoy family-friendly activities in the Welcome to Winter Festival in Village at Palisades Tahoe Friday and Saturday, featuring live music, holiday shopping, and more! Ride the Aerial Tram to High Camp for beautiful views of the Sierras and Lake Tahoe. Catch a yoga class at Palisades Yoga, offering free classes for Ikon Passholders Friday and Saturday. Get photos with Santa and watch the Annual Christmas Tree lighting with complimentary hot cocoa and cookies. If you’re ready to get a start on your holiday shopping, enjoy exclusive discounts for Ikon Passholders at retail stores like Patagonia, Parallel Mountain Sports, The North Face, and more. The festivities wrap up with a Happy Hour at Rocker on Saturday at 4 pm, and the first 50 guests will receive a complimentary Yeti cup with a drink purchase.
Small Business Saturday
The Tahoe City Downtown Association invites you to start your holiday shopping off this season by supporting our local businesses and Shop Small Business Saturday. There will be sales and celebrations throughout downtown Tahoe City, including a photo booth and photos with Santa at the Cobblestone Center, raffles for local gift certificates, and more! Support the community and small businesses recovering from the pandemic while doing your holiday shopping this season.
Enjoy Live Music in Truckee
If you’re in the mood for some live entertainment, there are a few spots you can catch some tunes this weekend. Moody’s Bistro in Truckee hosts live music every Thursday – Saturday from 8-11 pm. This week, catch Rustler’s Moon on Thursday, and Robbie Gade All Stars Friday & Saturday. You can also check out Alibi Ale Works on Saturday, where The Darin Talbott Show will be live from 9-11 pm. This award-winning singer/songwriter brings a unique blend of improv and music to his show – get more info here.
Holly Arts Fair
Are you an art lover? Even if you’re just looking for the perfect gift for that hard-to-shop-for someone on your list, you’ll find plenty of beautiful and original one-of-a-kind pieces at the Holly Arts Fair. Local artisans display their handmade and Tahoe-inspired arts and crafts for sale at North Tahoe Arts building. Find special and unique holiday gifts created right here in Tahoe. Open daily from 11 am – 5 pm.
Enjoy the Great Outdoors
The weather in Tahoe is forecasted in the 50s and sunny this weekend, making it darn near perfect for hiking, biking, or even taking a stroll along the water. Whether you want to cruise the Bike Path along the West Shore or the Truckee River, hang out at the empty beaches, or find a thrill at the top of a scenic vista, it will be a beautiful weekend for enjoying the great outdoors. Some of our favorite trails are still open and snow-free, so check out this post about hiking trails for ideas. For some moderate hikes with the best views of the Lake, we recommend Eagle Rock, Mount Watson, or Rocky Ridge Road.
We wish you all a happy and healthy Thanksgiving filled with friends, family, good food, and good cheer!
We’ve gotten our first few snowfalls in Tahoe, and while the resorts aren’t opening until next month, now is the perfect time to start your winter preparations! From the best exercises to add into your routine, to making sure all your ski gear is ready to rip, read on for our top tips on how to get ready for winter now! Ski season will be here before you know it, so be prepared to get out and enjoy it with these tips.
Lunge and Squat
The best way to get ready for ripping down the slopes? Start incorporating these leg exercises now, so you won’t get the jelly-legs fatigue on day one! Trainers recommend incorporating this leg-blaster series into your routine: squats, alternating lunges, jump lunges, and jump squats. For each exercise, repeat each move 10-20 times, rest for 15 seconds, and then repeat the circuit a total of 6 times. Are you sweating yet?
Wax Your Skis
There’s nothing worse than hitting the fresh slopes with soft edges and slow sticks! Bring your skis or boards in for a tune-up now, before lines get long on the mountain. Ask for a hot wax and edge sharpening, and you’ll be ripping come opening day. If you have an at-home tuning station, take stock of your inventory and get any wax or tools you’ll need now so mid-season adjustments are quick and easy.
Check Your Pass
Have you double-checked your pass? If you haven’t already, there is limited time remaining to buy most season passes. Many resorts have new or adjusted rules this season regarding the number of passes sold, reservations required for ski days, or advanced lift-ticket purchases. Check out each individual resort for specific updates. If you already have your pass in hand, make sure to keep it somewhere safe until opening day. Maybe now is the time to stash it in your ski jacket so you’ll always know where it is.
Check Your Gear
Ever pull on your snow pants in the morning only to realize you forgot about that late-season snag and now there’s a hole in your knee? Or go to grab your gloves, but can only find one? Dedicate some time to pull out your ski gear now, go through what you have, if anything needs repairs, or you need to make any wardrobe updates. If you’re in need of gear and advice, check out any of our local Tahoe ski shops, staffed with the most knowledgeable folks who can answer questions about outerwear, gear, and everything in between!
Book Your Winter Rental
Your ski vacation won’t be complete without booking the perfect place to stay! We anticipate this will be another busy ski season in Tahoe, and bookings for popular weeks are already going fast! Check out our website for the latest availability, and if you need any help planning the perfect stay, we are here for you! Just give us a call or contact us through social media for anything you might need!
It’s finally starting to feel like fall in Tahoe – the days are getting shorter, the crowds have thinned, and there is a hint of crispness in the air. Although shoulder season in Tahoe is often overlooked, we are excited to settle back into the other season perfect for hiking, biking, and cruising the lake. With warm days and crisp nights, fall in Tahoe is the perfect time to explore. From outdoor adventures for all ages, to picturesque evenings and outstanding cuisine, now is the perfect time to experience Tahoe’s secret season.
Now that the smoke has cleared, we continue to be eternally grateful for the efforts of firefighters and first responder crews who have contained blazes and kept our beloved Tahoe safe. The sun has returned and we are more grateful than ever for the sight of blue skies over sparkling blue waters. September temperatures in Tahoe generally range from the high 60’s – high 70’s, and it’s rare to have clouds or rain this time of year. This makes it one of the best months to visit if you love outdoor activities!
The crisp evening air is the perfect complement to warm days under the sun. As our nights cool down, it’s the perfect time to enjoy a soak in the hot tub again! Relax and unwind under the cool night stars with your favorite apres beverage at one of our many homes offering a hot tub – check out the full list here. You might even see some shooting stars light up the sky if you’re lucky!
Now that summer vacation is over, visitors are dwindling and Tahoe is feeling quiet again for the first time in a long time. If you’re more into the serenity of nature than navigating crowds on the beach, this is the perfect time of year for you! The hiking paths are less crowded, the beaches are empty, and there aren’t long waits at local restaurants. See below for some great hikes in Tahoe that have beautiful fall foliage. Please note that all National Forests in Tahoe are temporarily closed through September 17th, so make sure you aren’t making plans to head into any closed areas before hitting the trails.
Hint of Color
As the weather cools, the leaves are starting to change on the trees. You can find the warm yellows and oranges of the Aspen trees scattered along the shores of the lake, or along parts of the Tahoe Rim Trail. The National Forests are temporarily closed through September 17th, but once they re-open you can check out trails in Mt. Rose Meadows or head up to Marlette Lake to see if any leaves are changing yet.
With fewer boats in the water and less wind whipping across the lake, September is also a great time to get out on the water. Early mornings are often calm and shrouded in mist, perfect for a quiet paddle or kayak trip. Did you know? Some of our lakefront rentals come equipped with paddleboards, kayaks, or canoes! If you’re in need of a rental, there are plenty of local businesses ready to help you out. Check out Willard’s Sport Shop in Tahoe City or West Shore Sports for all your rental needs. Looking for a longer excursion? You can paddle sections of the Tahoe Water Trail, a 72-mile water route that circumnavigates the entire lake!
Summer is winding down, and these lazy, hazy days of August are reminding us that all good things must come to an end. As the kids go back to school and there is a hint of cooler temps in the air, there are still plenty of ways to get in your final dose of summer activities. Here are our favorite ways to wind down summer in Tahoe.
Take in the Views
Cooler mornings are perfect for early hikes or bike rides, but if you’re not in the mood for a sunrise session, why not let the gondola do the hard work for you? Catch an Aerial Tram ride at Squaw Valley or a Scenic Gondola Ride at Heavenly. You can explore trails on the top of both mountains, enjoy gorgeous views of Lake Tahoe, and either hike or ride back down. If you’re looking for an exhilarating way down at Heavenly, take the Ridge Rider Mountain Coaster, a gravity-powered mountain coaster that winds all the way back down the mountain, with epic views to boot!
Make a Splash
The Lake is about as warm as it gets by this late in the summer, making it the perfect time for water sports. Swim, SUP, kayak or wake surf – however you want to get out on the water, there’s a way to enjoy it in Tahoe. Did you know some of our rentals come with a private pier or buoy? You can search for homes with a buoy here. Many of our lakefront homes also come equipped with paddleboards, canoes, or kayaks, so you can explore the shore right from your rental!
Catch a Sunset
Is there anything better than a lazy afternoon winding into a beautiful warm evening? Maybe not – unless you add a cocktail! Enjoy the sunset overlooking the lake from one of our lake view homes, or at one of our favorite cocktail spots in town. If you’re up for an adventure, head up to Eagle Rock and watch the with sunset with one of the best views of the lake. You can even make a delicious batch of pineapple margaritas to go and enjoy it at the top!