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Lake Tahoe Recreation and Attractions

California State Parks
In the Lake Tahoe Basin:
Sugar Pine Point State Park - 530-525-7982
This beautiful Park fronts Lake Tahoe for 1-3/4 miles and features General Creek Campground (operated year-round), the Ehrman Mansion, Sugar Pine Point Nature Center, and over 2,000 acres of conifer forest. The park offers picnicking, hiking trails, fishing, sunbathing, and interpretive programs.
Ehrman Mansion, one of the most beautiful historic homes on Lake Tahoe.
D.L. Bliss and Emerald Bay State Park
Six miles of Lake Tahoe's most rugged shoreline highlight these popular parks. Both have campgrounds and opportunities for hiking, swimming, fishing, and interpretive activities.
Vikingsholm Castle, the most popular attraction, (west end of Emerald Bay), is considered the finest example of Scandinavian architecture in the United States. D.L. Bliss State Park has a beautiful beach on Rubicon Bay (and a trailhead for the Rubicon Point Trail that continues on to Vikingsholm); day-use parking is EXTREMELY limited (fee charged). Stop in at the Visitor Center (located at the entrance) for information and exhibits.
State Parks Nearby:
Donner Memorial State Park - 530-582-7892
Located just north of Lake Tahoe near Truckee, the park offers summer vacationers opportunities for camping, picnicking, boating, fishing, water-skiing, and hiking. Visit the Emigrant Trail Museum for information on the natural history of the Sierra Nevada including the Donner Party trapped here during the severe winter of 1846-47. A fee is charged.
Grover Hot Springs State Park - 530-694-2248
Located in Hot Springs Valley (almost 6,000 ft. elevation) 3 miles west of Markleeville on Route 1 (45 minutes south of S. Lake Tahoe via Hwy. 89). A campground and day-use areas for picnicking and hiking are available. The hot springs has two concrete ponds (103 deg.F and 80 deg. F) fed from runoff and six mineral springs. Swimsuits are required; no shorts or T-shirts please. A fee is charged.
Lake Tahoe Nevada State Parks:
Sand Harbor - 775-831-0494
Long sandy beaches, rocky coves, and panoramic lake views attract thousands of visitors to Sand Harbor.
Visitor Information Station - provides free literature and interpretive displays on the natural history of the Lake Tahoe region.
Swimming and Scuba Diving - Gently sloping beaches, crystal clear waters, and interesting rock formations make excellent areas for swimming and scuba-diving.
Boating - The boat launch facility has two double ramps. A fee is charged. Parking is limited in the summer; when the lot is full, vehicles and trailers must park outside of Sand Harbor.
Picnicking and Group Use Facility - from family picnic sites to groups of 100 people (weddings, family reunions, etc.). Picnic areas are accessible to persons with disabilities and have tables and barbecue grills. The group-use area has covered tables, running water, and electricity. Summer weekends are usually completely booked by January. Call the Sand Harbor Office early to reserve the group-use picnic area.
Spooner Lake and the Marlette/Hobart Backcountry
This area contains 13,000 forested acres of park land and several alpine lakes. The blue waters of Spooner Lake adjoin aspen groves and mountain meadows dotted with wildflowers. Swimming is not recommended.
Hiking - The Spooner Lake trail winds 2.3 miles (easy) through forest and meadows. Osprey, ducks, geese, and other wildlife can be observed.
Fishing - Spooner Lake is catch-and-release only, stocked with trout.
Picnicking - Above Spooner Lake. Group size is limited to 25 on weekends and 100 on weekdays. Call Sand Harbor for reservations (775-831-0494).
Backcountry Access - Spooner Lake area serves as a trailhead for the Marlette/Hobart backcountry, an area of exceptional opportunities for hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians. The North Canyon Road to Marlette Lake is the most popular route, and connects to trails that lead to the Tahoe Rim Trail, Snow Valley Peak, Hobart Resevoir, and the Flume Trail. The Flume Trail follows the path of an historic flum line that once provided water to the silver mines of Virginia City, providing spectacular views of Lake Tahoe. Extremely popular with hikers and mountain bikers. The trail is very narrow with steep drop-offs. It is not recommended for inexperienced bikers. Three primitive hike-in camping areas have firepits and pit toilets. Trail maps and camping information are available at Sand Harbor or Spooner Lake entrance station.
Cave Rock
The day-use facility is located on US Hwy. 50, 3 miles south of Glenbrook, just south of the Cave Rock tunnel. Features a boat launch, comfort station, six picnic tables, and a small beach with a beautiful view of Lake Tahoe.
Boat Launch - Deep waters close to shore make the two ramps accessible to watercraft of all sizes. Parking is limited in the summer; when the lost is full, vehicles and trailers must park outside the park.


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