2019 - West Coast USA - Day 10
A new day and a full day for Lake Tahoe to impress.
Neither of us slept too well. The room did not have air con as it is primarily a Winter Resort. It was still quite hot throughout the night, and Karen resorted to laying with cold wet flannels on her.
Breakfast for the next few mornings was to be in our room. Well that was the plan and it worked for Karen who had a small box of Bran Flakes she had ‘acquired’ from a previous Hotel. I was to have porridge. I made it up in a bowl, put in the microwave and nothing happened. A wasted 15 minutes later and I concluded the microwave was broken. I had a banana instead. The owners were so helpful when I reported it and just swapped the microwave out straightaway.
We were out of the room by 9am as we wanted to visit Emerald Bay where parking is apparently a nightmare for most of the day. The bay is supposedly one of the most photographed sites in the world. It was a beautiful day and a beautiful drive, if a little hair raising. We had to drive up on top of a large ridge of rock between a lake and the bay and there were no crash barriers either side.
Arriving at Inspiration Point, one of the two viewpoints overlooking Emerald Bay, even at that early hour we managed to secure the last parking spot in the small car park. As we walked to look at the view, I chatted to someone who said they had tried to visit this spot the day before but had been able to get anywhere near it this vindicating our decision to get here early.
The bay is attached to the Lake and is renown for its Emerald colour. I’m not sure if we were seeing it at the best time of the year or what, but it didn’t look that much different in colour to us. We have seen far far better in the Rockies last year. The whole vista though was lovely and pretty special. We took the usual photos and then decided to drive onto Eagle Falls which fed into the bay. By now it was getting busy but we managed to find a ‘spot’ outside the proper car park on the side of the road. We walked and took some more photos of the bay before walking down the road to the Eagle Falls Trail.
We started the trail. It was rough going with some high steps and rocks to clamber up. Karen found it hard going with her knee and foot problems. The intense heat was not helping and when she twisted her ankle we decided it would be best for her to turnaround as we did not understand how much further we had to go and what the terrain would be like. I carried onto the top. It was not that easy but I made it. I went up further to the Vista point initially before going down to the bridge which crossed the falls. The water looked so beautiful clean and pure. One or two people had not been able to resist the temptation of getting into the water which is supposedly some of the purest in the USA. I then scrambled back down to fins Karen.
At that point we decided to drive further round the Lake to Tahoe City to have a look around. It was a lovely 19 mile drive. Tahoe City didn’t have a lot going for it and was very congested again with roadworks. We found a lovely local coffee shop at the side of a Safeway store and sat outside with a view of the Lake having a drink. We then went into Safeway and bought some lunch and sat outside eating that afterwards. We moved the car and had a little wander along the main drag before heading back along the Lake. Karen fancied looking at one of the beaches we passed and so we pulled into Baldwin Beach. It cost us $10 to enter, which I may have grumbled about. It was actually lovely. There were quite a few people on the beach and playing in the water. We found a lovely bench just a few feet from the waters edge. It had some shade and we chilled for a hour. We passed some of the time doing a crossword.
Lake Tahoe was growing on us. Even more for Karen as on the way back to the Hotel we went to Starbucks and sat outside for a while. Having a nice nearby Starbucks makes for a happy Karen. A happy wife means a happy life.
After the long dark walk the previous evening, today we decided to drive to ‘Heavenly’ which was the Ski Resort centre of South Lake Tahoe. It was just too far to walk. We parked up and wandered in. It was a lovely lively place and was very much like Whistler and other USA ski resorts we have visited. Very upmarket, and very us we decided.
We ate at Base Camp Pizza, which Karen declared to be her new best Pizza ever. The place was extremely busy and had a long queue which we bypassed by sitting at the outside bar. There was a band playing on the porch and everyone were enjoying themselves. Then we noticed that next door was a Cold Stone Creamery. This was turning into one of Karen’s best days. She joined the queue and had a Strawberry Concoction which was huge and deemed to be really good. We then wandered round the resort and found a few other places we could have eaten at. We browsed a few shops before heading back to our room for the night.