Day 1 of a delayed report from mid-August!
A good friend and I planned a mountain biking trip to Lake Tahoe several months in advance. We put this mid-August weekend on our “family calendars” several months in advance. We didn’t look at lodging until about 6 weeks before and, “ugh!”, it was expensive! $199 a night for the cheapest lodging in the Truckee / Tahoe City / King’s Beach area. A quick “texting session” and we agreed that Car Camping would be a good idea, as long as they had post-cycling showers!
We got REALLY lucky and found only one site available, even looking as far away as Donner Lake. It was right in Tahoe City! A short walk to restaurants, and a 2 minute walk to a coffee and bagel shop. Though earplugs were necessary and our site had all the charm of a parking lot, it worked out very well. It was an excellent location, where we could watch the bicycles at night, as well as leaving our cooking gear at home and walk to restaurants and Safeway. I think we hit upon a recently cancelled reservation at just the right time… http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=504
We left Silicon Valley on a friday around 2:30. We hit a few traffic bottlenecks on the way. We managed to get to our destination, and set up our tents, just as it was getting dark.
The next morning, we headed out of camp, on our bicycles, to the nearby Tahoe Rim Trail. (did I mention this was a convenient location?) We found the trailhead in a residential neighborhood close by and started our climb.
Soon we were looking down on the Truckee River Valley and the Highway 89 corridor, headed northeast from Tahoe City. (Yes, those are rafts on the river!)
Shortly thereafter we went from rocky singletrack to the “Fiberboard Highway”. This “highway” is a former logging road, which goes from the forest above Tahoe City to the Brockway Summit on Highway 267, about 8 miles ot the northeast. A few miles into the Fiberboard Highway, we got some advice from a passing cyclist, who recommended a much more interesting single track back down to the shore. A beautiful loop ride, which brought us back very close to our campsite in time for a quick swim at the public beach before sunset.
We were now looking forward to the next day’s ride on the famous “Flume Trail”, high along the eastern shore of Lake Tahoe. It has the BEST views in the area.
Yes, and it was smoky over the lake in the evenings due to a fire near Foresthill, CA. The daytime views were unobstructed, however! The winds kept the smoke away from the lake earlier in the day.