Hello desolation wilderness.
Keep Tahoe Blue - rings true more than ever this summer with how full the lakes, streams and ponds are. How magical is this place with its stunning mountain backdrops and crystal clear blue water? Some of the mountain tips are brushed with light snow still which makes for captivating scenic views and if you are brave enough to venture to the top you can have some snowball throws (or iceballs more like it). It is obvious to come to Tahoe in the winter to shred down the slops but I truly believe Tahoe comes alive in the summer with amazing hiking, paddle boarding, boating, bicycling, golf, tennis and so many more activities. Keeping towards my favorite things I am going to run you through my favorite coffee spots, adventures, and food!
But first coffee.
As you know I always have to start my day with some delicious brew. Coffee brew...duh. I really just like good espresso....I think I was spoiled in Australia. America and there darn obsession with filtered coffee...oye vey! Anyways, South Lake Tahoe is a bit limited when it comes to coffee but I did find three spots that have become my go to.
Easy - D.L. Bliss State Park -for beginner hikers, people with short attention spans, if you are hungover or just quite frankly want to take an instagram photo and bounce I would suggest D.L. Bliss state park because there are a ton of different trails for you to chose from. Anything from a .25 mile loop to 2.3 miles like the lighthouse trail or as much as 8.3 miles with the Rubicon trail the park will leave you standing breathless with stunning views of the lake. Pictures below are from the rubicon trail at D.L. Bliss state park.
Moderate - Eagle Lake Trail - now if you want to commit to a little uphill and then have the ability to jump into a pristine lake, I would highly recommend Eagle Lake Trail. This hike is moderately trafficked and leads right into desolation wilderness so if you are feeling ambitious you can easily tack on an additional 10 miles and trek up to Dick's lake.
Pack some food, its going to be a long hike.
Hard - Mt. Tallac is one of those hikes where the scenery changes at least three different times (aka you know you're setting forth a huge day). It starts with a lovely peaceful grass meadow, perhaps Bambi will scurry by and bunnies will hop into the luscious green grass. A mild climb appears next where you will cross over a beautiful ridge in which panoramic views of Fallen Leaf Lake and Lake Tahoe can be seen....not too shabby right? Just wait....your climb will begin to climb in which you will happen upon a pond. It is still peaceful at this point. You will climb again, and again, and again and happen upon another pond (as seen below). This is where the terrain starts to turn into rocky slates or as I like to call it dragon domain. I mean seriously what else can live in this stuff besides Dragons (Maybe I have been watching too much game of thrones). From this pond you will begin to summit the mountain top or submit. Its basically 35 minutes of climbing over boulders. And there is snow sometimes as you can see from my video of getting ice chunks thrown at me on top of dragons domain. If you dare pass this you have another hour to reach the peak of the mountain. I find this second half to be quite interesting because the terrain reverts back to luscious heavenly meadows with panoramic views. But, once you reach the top of the mountain its back to dragons domain and burnt trees from lightening bolts striking down. On our hike it started to storm and there was quite the electrical storm to the point where my hair was sticking straight up. I have never been scared on a hike before but this definitely did the trick and I basically ran down the mountain. Now, according to all trails this hike is 9.6 miles there and back but I don't think that constitutes this last bit we did to the dragons domain in which our calculations came out at 11 miles. If you are fit and up for a day of hiking I would suggest Mt. Tallac as it is quite the adventure.
Food. Top 3 vegan spots. All the vegan food.
Let us take a moment of silence and appreciate these nachos. I mean come on. Bomb. And they are vegan and you already know it tastes good.
As a vegan I am actually quite surprised at the options in particular South Lake Tahoe has to offer. Here are my top 3 spots to check out!
2. Sprouts - now this place is not strictly vegan so it will appease the masses but it has TONS of vegan options and modifciations. It is basically a "clean-eating" type place in Tahoe meaning they keep the foods simple and don't add a bunch of extras. They have everything from sandwiches, salads, burritos, rice / veggie bowls, smoothies and so much more. This last time I had there vegetable crunch sandwhich with freshly grated red cabbage and carrots, tomato, red onion, sprouts, avocado and homemade honey mustard dressing on whole wheat bread. The food is fresh, the location is convenient and its always packed full of healthy Tahoe like-minded friends.
3. Free Bird Cafe - I go here for two reasons while I am in Tahoe. One for the coffee as they are one of the only decent places to get quality espresso. And secondly, for their superfood smoothies. Not many places have as many superfood options for smoothies as Free Bird does and I love that they pick quality organic products for their smoothies. My favorite pre-hike drink is their green machine which contains organic apple juice, mango, banana, spinach, spirulina, goji berry, maca, mesquite, hemp seeds, hemp protein, flax seeds and bee pollen. Amazing! If you want to make it a little less sweet I would suggest removing the banana and substituting almond milk for the apple juice. Cheers to health!
Adventure part deux. PADDLE BOARDing.
My top two spots to paddleboard in tahoe.
Hope you all enjoy Tahoe just as much as I do and remember Keep Tahoe Blue!!!
Just another girl who is trying to inspire others. Passionate about health and fitness. And a love of coffee and peanut butter.