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Lake Tahoe Skiing

If you like ski vacations but don’t necessarily want to be freezing cold the whole time, look no further than Lake Tahoe skiing. Lake Tahoe is famous not only for the amazingly beautiful lake, but also for its concentration of ski resorts and sunny day skiing. With 14 ski resorts in the greater Lake Tahoe area it is easy to find what you are looking for. Resorts range from big to small, advanced to beginner terrain, and fancy resort to a “mom n’ pops” place. Once you figure out which ski resort has what you are looking for you need to determine what time of year to go, and where to stay. At Tahoe Rental Management we only handle private vacation homes or condos. Check out our listings to see what houses we have available where. We suggest picking your ski resort, then picking your place to stay. As for what time of year to go, there are two basic seasons for Lake Tahoe skiing: winter and spring.

Winter skiing is mid December through March. Generally you can expect big “wet” storms that drop 1 to 4 feet of snow over 24 to 36 hrs followed by sunshine and 40 degree weather. The snow usually starts to fall in late November and the ski resorts get into full swing by the Holidays. If you Don’t mind crowds the Holidays are a really fun time of the year, there is just something about Christmas lights sparkling against the snow! January and February are the coldest months, but the nice thing about Lake Tahoe skiing is that the single digit days never last long. March is when the temps warm up and big storms tend to roll in between the sunny days. This can be really awesome because you ski powder in the morning and enjoy a sunny and relaxed afternoon of groomers, but March it is inconsistent and varies and lot year to year. If chasing powder is your goal peak winter is a great time to plan your trip, but if skiing in a T Shirt seems more like your thing, spring Lake Tahoe skiing is your time.

They don’t call California the sunshine state for nothing, and that characteristic does indeed extend from the beach to the mountains. Spring skiing generally starts in the end of march and extends through May, maybe longer depending on how much snow we got earlier in the year. Lake Tahoe skiing in spring still has its occasional snow storms and grey days, but for the most part you can count on 50 to 60 degrees with sunshine. The trick to spring skiing is to have the night time temps drop below freezing, then day temps get above 45 degrees, and plan on getting out there around 11pm. Nice right? Earn some extra points with the locals by skiing in the morning and whitewater rafting in the afternoon! Another perk for spring is cheaper accommodations and discounted resort ticket sales. Keep in mind that some of the smaller ski resorts don’t have the resources to stay open into May so check predicted closing times before booking.  

For some tips on how to plan for the weather check out this article!

Lake Tahoe Weather

Lake Tahoe Weather

In an outdoor community weather rules the theme of the day, and Lake Tahoe weather can be a very hard thing to predict. The Pacific Crest has a tendency to make its own weather, for example; it can be sunny and 50 degrees in Tahoe City but 40 degrees and ice pelting in Squaw Valley, a meer 10 minute drive apart!

Lake Tahoe WeatherTahoe has 3 basic seasons that come with different weather expectations: summer, winter, and the shoulder seasons: spring and fall. In the winter you can generally expect big storms that dump lots of snow followed by blue skies. In the summer we have fairly predictably 70 to 80 degree days with sunshine and low humidity. Spring and fall is when things get a little more unpredictable. One week it will be sunny and 75, the next we get 2 inches of snow. If you have the flexibility to keep an eye on the weather and wait to book until it looks good in the 10 day forecast you can get some great deals, great Lake Tahoe weather, and no crowds.

Below are some of Tahoe Rental management’s favorit tools for planning a great day outside. After 10 years of trying to make plans based on the weather in this beautiful and wild place we have developed some methods to deciphering the madness of Lake Tahoe weather. The main thing to remember, no matter where you get your weather from, is never trust the 10 day forecast in the mountains, nothing is reliable until you hit the 5 to 7 day range!

Weather Underground

This is the best all around app for the area. A big thing to consider in Lake Tahoe is elevation. The best feature on this app is the ability to select a weather station closest to where you will be going. For example, if you would like to go for a hike at Mt. Rose meadows the closest town to search is Incline Village, nearly 2,000 feet below! Weather underground is great for this because you can search Incline Village and then further select a weather station up in the meadow rather than down in the town. Download the App 

Open SnowLake Tahoe Weather

If white fluffy snow is your calling to Lake Tahoe, Bryan Allegretto with Open Snow is the guy help you answer that call. When a winter storm is on it’s way Bryan does daily (sometimes more) updates for where and when the storm will hit the hardest. It is then up to you if you want to head toward it or away from it! Download the App 

Lake wind Advisory

Part of the beauty of Lake Tahoe is the sheer size of the lake, but it also comes with its weather challenges. Thunderstorms brew on the peaks and come sweeping across the lake with a craft-endangering amount of power. Any time you are planning on hitting the water it is always a good idea to make sure The Lady of the Lake isn’t planning on kicking up her heels later in the afternoon. Advisory 

Webcams

Thanks to technology you do not actually need to have your feet on the ground to know what Lake Tahoe weather is doing in your particular place of interest. All of the major ski resorts and most of the nice lakeside restaurants have webcams.  

Looking for some ideas for a great day outside in Lake Tahoe?

Check out these articles on Lake Tahoe Camping and Best Dog Beaches

Lake Tahoe Camping

Lake Tahoe Camping

Lake Tahoe is a camping and adventuring paradise. There are three types of camping available to recreators in Lake Tahoe, backpacking, national forest 4X4 camping, and state park camping.  For this article we will go over our top three of each. Here at Tahoe Rental Management we believe the best way to enjoy the luxury of a beautiful house is to sleep in the woods before you get there! Please remember to practice ‘Leave No Trace’ ethics and respect the different rules and regulations of the managing boards. All of the trail heads discussed below are labeled on the map at the bottom. Happy adventuring!

Backpacking (Labeled in Blue)

Backpack-in camping in Lake Tahoe is the best way to see the Sierras and avoid the masses. Your area options are Tahoe National Forest, Desolation wilderness and Granite Chief Wilderness. With these three zones at your disposal the options are unlimited, but here are 3 of our favorites. Please follow the link below to learn more about the rules and regulations associated with each.

Tahoe National Forest

Desolation Wildernes

Granite Chief Wilderness

1. Aloha Lake, Desolation Wilderness, South Lake Tahoe

This big beautiful alpine lake is surrounded by white granite peaks with tons of tiny granite islands perfect for jumping from. From the Fallen Leaf Lake trailhead it is a little over a 12 mile loop with some pretty substantial elevation gain and loss. It is very easy to turn this into a multi-night adventure by leaving a car at either Emerald Bay or Meeks Bay trailheads.  More info

2. Five Lakes Basin, Granite Chief Wilderness, Alpine

This is a short but steep trip up to 5 beautiful small lakes in close proximity to each other. The trial can be quite crowded at times but once you are up there it is very easy to escape the crowds.  This is a very popular dog hike so we suggest choosing a campsite a bit off the beaten path to avoid too many dog visitors to your tent and leaving their mark if you know what I mean! More Info

3. Paradise lake, Tahoe National Forest, Donner Summit

Although Paradise Lake is just outside of the Lake Tahoe basin, it still embodies everything Tahoe has to offer. Paradise is a hanging lake situated on the saddle of two peaks with great swimming and fishing. It is a 15 mile round trip (11 if you have a 4X4 vehicle) with amazing views and great wildflowers. More info

4X4 Camping (Labeled in Orange)

Off road camping in Lake Tahoe comes in all different levels of difficulties and distance, therefore we chose to outline three of our favorite areas in the basin to put the truck to work. Just remember that if you are in National Forest you can generally camp wherever you would like, but if you are on private land, such as PG&E, you need to follow their rules and regulations. We strongly suggest hitting a local shop and purchasing a map! These areas are a maze of trials and topo lines can be very helpful in deciding the best rout. If you would like a more specific list of trails in the Lake Tahoe area here is a great website.

1. Blackwood Canyon Sno-park, Tahoe National Forest, Sunnyside

During the winter months this park is a snow activity mecca, but once the gate opens at the bottom around June 1st, wheeled toys have their turn. Take the paved road until it ends and then pick a dirt road, enjoy the views, and drive till you find a great place to camp. This trail network also eventually links up with the infamous Rubicon trail.

Rubicon Trial Info

Blackwood Canyon Info

2. The 06 Fire Road, Granite Chief Wilderness, Truckee

There are a lot of ways to access this area of Granite Chief Wilderness but the best is from the 06 fire access road. If you have ever wanted to off-road from Truckee to Tahoe City it is certainly the best way to avoid traffic! There is some rough driving to be found, but for the most part it is maintained dirt roads. Just pick a place that looks good and call it home for the night. The link below is for a mountain bike loop but it does the best job of describing the terrain and how to get there. More Info

3. Kidd Lake, PG&E Land/Tahoe National Forest, Donner summit

Kidd lake is a great off-road camping destination. The drive to the lake is a well maintained dirt road, but the surrounding National Forest is full of more challenging drives. You can either camp in the campground by the lake or find another spot in the forest.  More Info

State park Camping (Labeled in Yellow)

Camping in an established campground is fun and easy for the whole family. We chose the places below because they are a short walk to a nice beach and have a full range of facilities. When planning your trip make sure to keep in mind that these places fill up fast in the summer so book ahead of time or get there early. Alo remember to observe all of the rules associated with bears in these campgrounds… think Yogi The Bear but your car is the picnic basket!

1. D.L. Bliss, State Park, South Lake Tahoe

This State park has everything you need in a camping adventure: great hiking, bouldering, rock jumping, a beautiful sandy beach, and big trees. Bring some items to enjoy the water and kick back and relax. More Info 

2. Zephyr Cove, Private Resort, Glenbrook 

This urban-style campground is a great place for the whole family, including the furry 4-legged members. Camping options rang from RV hookups, cabins, and tent sights. The resort has a lodge with a restaurant, Starbucks, and wedding venue, but when you are in the camping area or on the beach you feel very secluded. The far north side of the beach is a dog beach (Best Dog Beaches Lake Tahoe) and has a nice nature walk. More Info

3. Lake Forest Campground, Tahoe Public Utility District, Tahoe City

This campground is fairly close to the main road but it is also has large sights and is a short walk to a quiet beach and park combo. You are also right next to an amazing bike path that stretches up the west shore and down the Truckee river to Squaw Valley. This is also a great place to bring your boat or kayak. More Info

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Best Dog Beaches Lake Tahoe

Best Dog Beaches Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe is full of great beaches and a dog lover’s paradise, but it is important to know where you can go to avoid a ticket. Below is a list of our top 5 best dog beaches in Lake Tahoe with some local tips. We are based in carnelian bay so we will start here and go clockwise around the lake. Please be help keep Tahoe dog friendly by cleaning up after your dog and being respectful of rules.

1. Patton Landing Beach, Carnelian Bay CA

This is truly one of the best dog beaches in Lake Tahoe! Located right next to Watremans Landing, this smooth pebble beach is a great place for you and your pup to take a dip or paddle board. It is a narrow beach with good shade, picnic tables, and a bathroom. Tip: Pop into Watermans Cafe and to grab some coffee or lunch on their dog friendly patio.  More Information on Patton Beach.

Address: 5166 N Lake Blvd, Carnelian Bay, CA 96140

2. Coon Beach, Kings Beach CA

This is not the best beach for a slow wade into the lake due to the large rocks along the shore (fortunately the dogs don’t seem to mind!) but if you are looking for a great view to BBQ and enjoy a sunny day with your furry friend this a great place. The beach area is located where Coon st dead ends into the lake. The dog beach part is to the left of the boat launch. Tip: Hit the farmers market right next to the park every Tuesday morning in the summer. More information on Coon St. Beach.

Address: 8628 Brockway Vista Ave, Kings Beach, CA 96143

3. Zephyr Cove, Glenbrook NV

Only the far north end of Zephyr Cove is a dog beach but there is still plenty of space for two-legged lounging and 5-legged romping. This sandy beach with massive pine trees and a great view of Freel Peak is a great way to spend a day. Tip: Zephyr offers pet friendly camping and cabin rentals! More information on Zephyr Cove.

Address: 760 U.S. Hwy 50, Zephyr Cove, NV 89448

4.Kiva Beach, South Lake Tahoe, NV

This is one of the best dog friendly swimming beaches in Lake Tahoe. Sandy, sunny, dog friendly and free parking, what more do you need? Tip: Don’t forget the bug spray in the evening! There is a marsh area just beyond the trees behind the beach. More Information on Kiva Beach.

Directions: Hwy 89, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150

5. Obexer’s Marina, Homewood CA

Grab a bite on the dog friendly patio of the deli/market and then take a dip at the best dog friendly beaches on the west shore of Lake Tahoe just to the left of the marina. Obexor’s offers all sorts of water activity rentals. Tip: Tucker your pup out before hitting the beach by taking them for a hike around Homewood Mountain Resort right across the street. More information on Obexor’s.

Address: 5300 W Lake Blvd, Homewood, CA 96141