Crystal clear water, Winter Olympic history and a slice of Americana await you in the Northern Lake Tahoe region of California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains. My visit to Lake Tahoe in September 2012 was a brief one on the way to Sacramento from Reno, Nevada. I stopped in the lakeside towns of Crystal Lake, Kings Beach and Tahoe City to take in the views of this beautiful lake.
Nearby is the skiing village of Squaw Valley. This area was home to the 1960 Winter Olympics and is today a very nice place to visit all year round (upscale facilities abound in the village). There is a cable car that can take you up into the mountains but alas I had no time to do this during my visit.
Further north I stopped in the mountain town of Truckee, a favourite place for tourists along with the rich and famous. Truckee has a nice little main street with lots of shops, cafes and restaurants with that old Americana feel to the place.
Truckee, a logging town and a key location for the emigrant trail was also a place where nearby in 1846 the Donner Party, a group of emigrants suffered great hardship and tragedy. They had set off from Missouri by wagon train for California but got trapped by snow in the Sierra Nevada mountains – to cut a long story short, of the original 87 people only 48 survived. The party had become separated and were in different locations when the first were rescued in 1847. Many of the survivors are thought to have resorted to cannibalism to make it through! I just stuck with a sandwich on my visit!