After spending a week in Reno, with the amazing Halterman family, and taking care of some “city chores” we headed back into California to spend some time around South Lake Tahoe.
Leaving Reno we headed over Mt. Rose and down into the Lake Tahoe basin. Cruising around the North end of the lake we ended up with a nice little campsite at D.L. Bliss state park.
The first day we spent working from a Starbucks in South Lake Tahoe then headed out to brave the crowds that afternoon on the Rubicon Trail. We started on the southern trailhead and because of all the people had to park about a mile away up the road.
After filling our water we set off North on the trail, which to our delight was not overly crowded. The Rubicon trail is perfect for running and had stunning views of the lake for almost the whole run. You get to cruise through a few different campgrounds and beach sites so there are a lot of opportunities to fill up water, jump in the water (Lake Tahoe) and use a bathroom (this might have saved Joe on the way out…)!
The last mile or so was a pretty hefty climb that lead to some spectacular views of Emerald Bay and the surrounding area.
Once we turned around and headed back down the trail, we decided not to swim until we were back near the van and although it was getting a little late… we put in an extra mile or so to jump in the cold, crystal clear lake. It was great, we had the beach to ourselves and with our goggles we swam around, cooled off, and got rid of some of the trail grime we had accumulated. 🙂
The water at Lake Tahoe is stunning, such a clear blue, and refreshingly cool. After we had sufficiently cooled down, we dried off and hauled our tired butts that extra mile up the hill to the parked van. Total mileage for the day ended up just under 15 and we were toast!
The following day we were headed to Kirkwood for our lovely friends Katie and J.P’s wedding, so on the way we decided to do a quick hike up to Maggie’s Peak in the Desolation Wilderness. The hike was short (4ish miles round trip) but had a giant climb! At the top it was worth it, you had vast views into the Desolation Wilderness, a million trees and beautiful granite rock, as well as views looking back to Emerald Bay.
On the way down, we cooled off in an alpine lake and set off down the hill! This would be a nice hiking option if you are limited for time, but want a glimpse into the Desolation Wilderness!
That evening we drove to Kirkwood and met up with our friends Don and Susana for dinner after walking around the very empty (ghost town’ish) Kirkwood resort.
Kirkwood was beautiful and we are itching to go back and ski during the winter months. Unfortunately, during our stay, the Ferguson Fire was in full swing in Yosemite and we were seeing a fair amount of smoke.
Nevertheless, we joined in on the wedding 5k Saturday morning, and set off for a pre wedding hike at Lake Margaret. It was another easy hike as far as mileage and was relatively flat. At Lake Margaret we jumped in for a swim (with about 50 other folks, it was packed!), had lunch, then headed back for the wedding!
After a beautiful ceremony in Kirkwood Meadows, we had dinner outside surrounded by the mountains, then danced the night away. It was such a fun night and we were so thankful to be a part of it!
Sunday morning was spent working (like real life work) and deciding what to do next, as the smoke had once again rolled in, we decided not to hike :-(. So, we drove over to the so called “ghost town” Virginia City and spent the day walking around town with Don and Susana. It was lovely to spend time with some familiar faces from Seattle and after saying our goodbyes we parted ways and headed back to Reno.
PS Virginia City is a thriving tourist trap, but has some real good BBQ!
After one quick night in Reno we spent the next few days working and driving. We stopped once again at the Rye Patch Reservoir (which has the most amazing sunsets we’ve ever seen!), then Angel Creek Campground (which was a nice wooded campground that sat nicely below a mountain peak).
Our next stop was Salt Lake City where we picked up some goods from REI, squeezed in a workout at Kirin Crossfit, and stuffed our faces with some Chik-fil-A (don’t tell). Then we met up with sister Sarah, brother in law Mike and baby nephew Robbie!
The family was in town for a wedding up near Powder Mountain UT so we took advantage of their two bedroom condo and crashed with them for two nights. Where our time was spent playing in the pool and crashing the rehearsal dinner (Thank you Allison and Jonathan! ).
Again it was great to spend time with family and friends, and we were looking forward to even more of that as we were set to pick up Chuck and Sue (parents) the next evening in Jackson Hole!
Up next, adventuring in the Grand Tetons and housing four adults in the van!