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Shipwrecks, Sky Races, Alps-Style Climbing for All Ages: What’s New in North Lake Tahoe for Summer 2019 

Last updated: February 2024


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Shipwrecks, Sky Races, Alps-Style Climbing for All Ages: What’s New in North Lake Tahoe for Summer 2019

NORTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif./Nev. (Summer, 2019) — Exploring shipwrecks or ascending an Alps-style climbing route — these don’t seem like typical North Lake Tahoe activities, but this summer one of the nation’s favorite vacation destinations will surprise and delight even the most seasoned traveler.

North Lake Tahoe is serving up the same summer favorites that keep visitors coming back year after year — outdoor music, world-class beaches, festivals, hiking, biking and more — along with some brand-new options for the adventurous.

Dive Shipwrecks in Emerald Bay

One of the most unexpected new adventures is the recently established Emerald Bay Maritime Heritage Trail, an underwater exploration of shipwrecks scattered across the bottom of Emerald Bay. Scuba divers can descend to these pristinely preserved watercraft, each with its own unique history, and explore the scuttled vessels in one of the most majestic settings in the nation.

The California State Parks calls the trail “the largest, most diverse group of sunken small watercraft of its kind, in their original location, known to exist in the nation.”

Scattered over four dive sites, the sunken vessels include a wooden barge used to haul cordwood and ferry cars across the lake, and a 1915 boat owned by the proprietor of the now-defunct Emerald Bay Resort. The shipwreck dives require Scuba experience and a tolerance for cold water, but the adventure represents a truly unique way to experience Tahoe’s beauty, history and lake environment.

Ascend Squaw’s Famed Tram Face on an Alps-Style Route

Alpenglow Expeditions’ Via Ferrata in Squaw Valley takes an age-old Alps idea — a climbing route made even more accessible by the security of a steel cable — and brings its stateside to the valley’s iconic Tram Face. Climbers of all ages and abilities can climb the towering granite cliff and enjoy the spectacular view of the valley far below.

The Via Ferrata is a great adventure for experienced climbers and novices alike, and a unique way to explore a part of Squaw Valley rarely visited by vacationers. The beautiful and climber-friendly California granite of the landmark feature in Squaw Valley offers up a beautiful ascent in a world-class alpine valley.

Run Across the Sky

The Broken Arrow Sky Race kicks adventure, and endurance, up a notch with a trail running course to match the serrated peaks of the Sierra Nevada. Starting at the Village at Squaw Valley and traversing multiple peaks, the race includes scrambling and steep uphill climbs.

Entrants to the 52-kilometer race will climb over 10,500 vertical feet during the course of the event, but the three–day race event from June 21-23 also includes a 26-kilometer, 11-kilometer, vertical kilometer and less than one kilometer-long kids race, offering options for runners of all abilities in a running festival setting.

The 26-kilometer event is internationally sanctioned race, and is one stop in the 2019 Mountain Running World Cup. The series has a combined prize pool of over $63,000, attracting the world’s best mountain runners. The Broken Arrow Skyrace will be the only World Cup race outside of Europe.

Ride the Largest Lift-Served Bike Park in the West

If all that uphill effort is not your speed, explore Northstar’s mountain bike park — the largest lift-served mountain bike park in the West. Chairlifts ferry you and your bike to the top of the mountain where a mind-boggling array of perfectly manicured trails await. Choose from expert downhill trails to flow trails, all leading back to the Village at Northstar, where drinks, food and refreshments await.

For even more mountain biking fun, the seventh leg of the Enduro World Series mountain bike competition will take place at the Northstar Bike Park, August 24-25, and will be the only United States stop on the tour. The internationally sanctioned race draws competing teams from over 40 countries.

Celebrate Dad with Beers and Boots … or Beaches

Kick off summer by celebrating Father’s Day with unique North Lake Tahoe experiences that dad will love. The North Tahoe Ale Trail combines two father favorites — outdoor adventure and craft beer — in a guide to some of Tahoe’s best trails and tastiest trailside watering holes for sampling local and regional brew.

Or book a tee time at one of North Lake Tahoe’s vast array of golf courses — everything from the Old Tahoe and history-rich Old Brockway course to the twin courses at Incline Village.

If dad is more of the relaxing type, pick the North Lake Tahoe beach that best suits him. Tahoe Public Beaches provides a helpful guide to the lake’s more than 40 public beaches, with information about hours, parking, amenities and more. Whether it’s a hike to a secluded east shore beach like Skunk Harbor or Chimney Beach — white sand beaches tucked between the towering boulders east of Incline Village — or the ease of dog-friendly Patton Beach (with nearby Garwoods Grill and Pier available for timely refreshments). Soak in the sun while taking in the splendor of the still-snowcapped peaks of Tahoe’s highest mountains.

Live Music at the Lake

North Lake Tahoe offers summerlong live music experiences, from weekly free music on the beach to music festivals in the mountains.

Kings Beach’s Friday night Music on the Beach series delivers the best of both worlds — live music and a world-class lakefront setting. The audience can take a dip in the lake between songs or just sit back and soak in the sounds of an eclectic lineup of bands, including funk outfit Sal’s Greenhouse, Kings Beach’s own Sneaky Creatures or regional favorite Jelly Bread.

Tahoe City’s Concerts at Common Beach serve up a similar vibe on the other side of North Lake Tahoe, with a packed lineup of bands playing all summer long every Sunday afternoon. The family-friendly setting includes a playground and a sandy beach, making it the perfect place to post up with family and friends for the ideal end to the weekend. Bands scheduled for this summer include funk stars Orgone, local Americana standouts Dead Winter Carpenters and bluegrass favorites Hot Buttered Rum.

Ditch the Car

It’s easier than ever to explore North Lake Tahoe on two wheels or by foot with new bike paths opening up this summer, including the spectacular East Shore bike path that will eventually connect Incline Village to Sand Harbor (with the first phase of this path opening this summer). The bike path is more than an easy way to avoid the summer rush to Sand Harbor, it is an experience all its own with jaw-dropping views of the lake’s shoreline.

For more ways to get out of your car and explore Tahoe by trolley, bus or bike, check out the Nifty 50 open-air trolley from Tahoe City down the West Shore to Camp Richardson, the Truckee River Bike Path that links Tahoe City to Squaw Valley or other regional transportation options.

About North Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe is a crown jewel of the Sierra. Formed approximately two million years ago, it is the largest alpine lake in North America and the second deepest in the United States. North Lake Tahoe spans two states and boasts two dozen beaches, twelve ski resorts, hundreds of miles of biking trails, half a dozen communities, and a growing number of nationally recognized human-powered events, races and festivals. North Lake Tahoe is a 45-minute drive from the Reno Tahoe International Airport, two hours from Sacramento International Airport and just over three hours from San Francisco International Airport. Visitor information centers are located at 100 North Lake Boulevard in Tahoe City and 969 Tahoe Boulevard in Incline Village.