Diablo Magazine July 2016 : Page 91

Tahoe's Beauty Is Magically Invigorating

Fill your lungs with the crisp mountain air, and you may find yourself never wanting to leave. Take in the breathtaking views of the incredible mountains and the endlessly blue lake, and you might start mentally calculating how many extra vacation days you can squeeze in before leaving.

Living in the Bay Area affords the luxury of jumping in the car for a quick Tahoe weekend, but what if your stay doesn't have to be a hurried one? Picture yourself spending a week or two in Tahoe. What if you stayed a month— or the entire summer? Experience what Tahoe has to offer over a longer period of time, and let the Tahoe magic sink in.

EXPLORE THE LAKE

If you've ever found yourself sitting lakeside in Tahoe watching sailboats effortlessly skim across the lake, use your extended stay to put yourself right on the deck of that boat. Enroll in sailing school, and improve your boating skills over the deep clean water Take an introductory course, then follow up w ith lessons on family sailing or basic cruising. Proceed with caution, as you take the time to fall in love with a new sport. After a few weeks, you may find yourself purchasing your own boat. (sailingventures.com/tahoe_ sailing_lessons.htm).

During a quick weekend stay, you can always rent a stand-up paddleboard and glide across the lake until your arms give out. With a longer visit, you can take your time exploring the lake fully. Start your kayak adventure with a novice voyage. After a few weeks of kayaking, you'll be flexing your kayak expertise farther across the lake. Or take a guided kayak to u r through Emerald Bay. Instead of looking down from a crowded vista on land, navigate through the middle of the bay, observing soaring bald eagles, stopping at the Vikingsholm mansion (tours available), and enjoying lunch alfresco before easing back into your kayak. Expand your Tahoe to u r with a sunset trip through the Timber Cove Marina, and experience what South Lake Tahoe has to offer A kayak adventure through Sand Harbor allows you to see the lake's East Shore. Or maybe you've been curious about the Upper Truckee River Schedule a few kayak adventures, and you'll find yourself enjoying the lake's beauty and history. (kayaktahoe.com/tourhtm).

Don't fo rg e t summer skiing: Expand your once-a-summer waterskiing skills, and learn about the ins and outs of w akeboarding and waterskiing with professional instructors. After a week or two of lessons, rent a boat or a Jet Ski of your own. You've got nothing but time to find your perfect watersport. (highsierrawaterskiing.com).

EXPLORE THE LAND

Tahoe's endless number of trails mean a true hiker needs time to explore. Plan a longer visit and check out the Tahoe Rim Trail, the West Shore trails, South Shore trails, North and East Shore trails, wildflower hikes, and wilderness areas. There's a trail for every kind of hiker with hikes varying in difficulty, locale, and type of scenery. Visit Fallen Leaf Lake for a one-to-threemile hike over gentle trails around the lake, with gorgeous views of flowers and aspens. The Van Sickle Trail is located behind Heavenly Village and connects to the Tahoe Rim Trail, with beautiful waterfalls. Don't miss the views during your descent. (tahoesouth.com/blog/six_greathikes in_tahoe_south/).

Use your extended stay to train for a Tahoe race. Get accustomed to the altitude, and commit to that triathlon you've always wanted to do. If you're more of a single race kind of athlete, the Tahoe terrain has you covered. The summer is filled with running festivals, open-water swims, paddling festivals, bike races, half marathons, and more. Pick a few for your stay, and work up a hungry altitude appetite.

Kick off the summer with the Reno-Tahoe Odyssey. Round up as many friends as you can for this 178-mile course that takes athletes from Reno to Tahoe, with views of Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows, the West Shore, South Tahoe, and Minden, Nevada, to name a few. Follow up a week later by participating in the Thunderbird Paddling Festival. Named "Tahoe's Most Scenic Paddle," the race follows both a four- and eight-mile loop, and is open to all paddling crafts, including kayaks, outriggers, and paddleboards. Later in the summer you can participate in a run up the base of Squaw Valley or go for a Lake Tahoe open-water swim. (bigblueadventure.com/events/; tahoequarterly.com/Article/tahoes-best-summer-races).

Work your way through the breweries nestled into the Tahoe mountains. Most Tahoe regulars have a favorite beer and pizza place, and a lengthy stay will give you the chance to discover your own favorite spot. From North Shore to South Lake, Truckee, and more, there are loads of breweries just waiting to be discovered. Most are owned by Tahoe locals, so prepare to chat it up and learn more about can't-miss activities during your stay. (drinkablereno.com/lake-tahoe-beerguide- truckee-summer).

Feeling charitable during your extended stay? Shake up a cocktail w ith Tahoe Blue Vodka, which donates a portion of proceeds from every bottle sold to support Lake Tahoe preservation. This unique premium vodka is an international award winner and was created from a smooth blend of grapes, corn, and sugarcane. Tahoe Blue Vodka is also w heat-free and gluten-free. Headquartered in South Lake Tahoe, the company has already donated $10,000 to the Tahoe Fund. Tahoe Blue Vodka is making a difference one bottle at a time (tahoebluevodka.com).

If you're more of a wine lover than a pub crawler be sure to visit the Truckee River Winery, located 20 minutes away from North Lake Tahoe. High elevations allow for a slower aging and fermentation process, so don't miss the tasting room and deli. If you're staying closer to South Lake Tahoe, head to Picchetti Winery located three blocks from the shore. The tasting room is available for weddings and private events. The winery, established in 1990, was the firs t fullproduction winery in Nevada. (truckeeriverwinery.com; picchetti.com).

EXPLORE YOUR SOUL

Nothing says summer in Tahoe like a festival, whether it's Shakespeare or bluegrass. The Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival's shows under the stars run from early July all the way to the end of August. The Lake Tahoe Music Festival features everything from classical to Broadway to big name musicians. Wanderlust brings yoga lovers to Squaw Valley in mid-July to celebrate music, yoga, and nature. Also not to be missed is the Brews, Jazz, and Funk Festival filled with free music and, of course, brews.

Pack a picnic for almost-daily free music events, including Tahoe City outdoor concerts on Commons Beach on Sunday nights, free concerts at the Truckee Amphitheater on Wednesday evenings, and Music on the Beach at Kings Beach on Friday nights. (tahoetopia.com/news/tahoe-timemusic- festivals-free-concerts).

Always wanted to take a cooking class? Food tastes b e tte r when it's prepared lakeside. Wolfdale's Cuisine on the North Shore features Farmers Market Cooking Classes on Thursday mornings in July and August. Never have time to take that painting class you've always wanted to try? Visit the Painted Vine for a one-day class at West Shore Cafe in Homewood to paint and sip wine while you overlook Lake Tahoe. Whether it's horseback riding at the Alpine Meadows Stables through the Tahoe National Forest, an aerial series at the Tahoe Flow Arts Studio, or polishing up your golf game with private lessons at The Golf Academy at Old Greenwood in Truckee, Tahoe has the class to inspire you to find your passion. (gotahoenorth.com/things/; tahoesbest.com/ places/horseback.htm; tahoeflowartsstudio.com; golfintahoe.com/golf_academy).

FIND A HOME AWAY FROM HOME

Turn your summer escape into a Lake Tahoe vacation property that you own and can enjoy year-round. Mountainside at Northstar, known as Tahoe's premier slope-side community, has introduced a new collection of townhomes. Conveniently located between The Ritz-Carlton and The Village at Northstar, the homes provide access to both ski runs and hiking trails. The townhomes feature slope views and have been meticulously designed by Bay Area-based Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, with over 2,200 square feet of living space. The solar-ready homes offe r families the ability to ski o ff the deck in the w in te r and celebrate the outdoors in the summer This progressive mountain luxury living is designed fo r Tahoe enthusiasts looking fo r an extended stay. (mountainsidenorthstar.com).

If you are exploring elsewhere around the lake to find the perfect Tahoe home, consult with Brandon Walsh Tahoe Real Estate. With over 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry, Walsh anticipates the needs and expectations of his clients to provide the highest-level customerservice experience. Raised in Danville, Walsh has a passion for the Bay Area and Tahoe and works with clients to find the perfect vacation home to fit their recreational needs. (brandonwalshtahoe.com).

Tahoe is filled with endless activities and memorable fun that will leave you yearning for your next trip up the mountain. Plan a longer getaway with activities to match, and relish in all that Tahoe has to offer.

Read the full article at http://trendmag2.trendoffset.com/article/Tahoe%27s+Beauty+Is+Magically+Invigorating/2518333/314983/article.html.

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