I love summer in Lake Tahoe. The first reason? It’s not cold. I can fully appreciate the beauty of it without bundling myself up like the little brother in the Christmas Story. It’s a gorgeous place in the summer as much as in the winter.
We have camped and rented houses there during the summer and enjoyed both. The first time we camped there my husband had a purpose. He wanted to take the Jeep he built for 4 wheeling on the Rubicon Trail. The Rubicon is a 22 mile long trail that starts in Gold Country and ends in Lake Tahoe but they would be doing it the other way around and not the entire thing.
The trail is beautiful but rocky and an exciting 4 wheel trip. They were only going over night. My husband has some pretty entertaining stories from that one 24 hour period that include a bear stealing their cooler in the middle of the night and an outhouse full of bees. All I know is when they came back I’ve never seen dirtier people. I made my son and my nephew (who were eight at the time) strip down to their underwear outsideof the motorhome and go directly to the shower! While they were gone, the girls and I had gone shopping and out to lunch. Much more my speed and I wasn’t driving the boys crazy being terrified going over those huge boulders in the Jeep.
Two years ago we rented a house in the Lake Tahoe Keys area. The houses are on channels that lead to the lake. The house fit our need of a couple of families with many teenagers. It had a dock for our boats so we could go directly out on the lake every day without launching the boat every time. Fabulous. We took the kids wakeboarding and tubing every day. We had big family dinners and went out to see the town.
The big deal on this trip was 4th of July. That night, before it was fully dark, we took the boats out on the water. We found a good spot, tied the boats up to each other and dropped anchor. There were hundreds of boats on the lake. I’m not exaggerating. You could practically walk from one to the other. Once the fireworks started I realized why. It was amazing. The most beautiful fireworks I have ever seen. They launch them off a pontoon type raft on the lake and if you are on the water they are directly over your head. When they come down it looks like they are touching the water. The reflection makes them twice as gorgeous and the fact that they are so close is like nothing I’ve ever seen. All the boats on the water had their radios set to the same local channel that played the music the fireworks were set to. It was gorgeous. I was in awe. Sorry Disneyland but you ain’t got nothin’ on Lake Tahoe.
The downside to this fabulous display was trying to get back to the house, on the boat, in the dark, when we weren’t sure exactly where the house was (we’d only been there a day and a half) with about a million other boats. I was okay until our friend we were following (who my husband assured me knew the way) pulled up next to us and yelled “Which way?” Oh good grief. Lake Tahoe is a huge lake. Were we really lost? It was really dark. Could you get lost on a lake? It felt like one of those scenes at the beginning of a horror movie (yes I have a vivid imagination, I write fiction) Finally, we ended up following a bunch of other boats and made it just fine but it was scary there for awhile.
The fireworks were worth it though. I don’t think I will ever see a more beautiful display than that. I’d just be sure I knew which way was home…