Biking Tahoe (and Other Activities)

For some, a visit to Lake Tahoe means time away from the frenetic scenes of everyday life. Libation in hand, it’s a time to listen to the wind waft through swaying pine trees, to enjoy the melodious sounds of miniature waves softly lapping at the shoreline.

For others, it’s a time to blast the lungs with hot, dry thin air in the crucible of the Lake Tahoe basin. To make the heart pound so hard, the drumbeat in your head drowns out the boisterous urging of the crowd. It’s a time to have a high-speed, two-wheeled outing with your best friends and fiercest rivals.

The Tour de Nez (tourdenez.com), a series of festive cycling events, takes place June 16-19 in 2010. Started by two coffee shop owners in Reno a dozen and a half years ago, the event has grown into a sometimes wacky and sometimes thrilling four-day party of family fun.

For those who want to see the offbeat world of cyclists and enjoy the great outdoors in a particularly striking part of the world, mid-June is a great time to visit. Then again, the dead of winter’s also a good time to visit – with Tahoe’s outstanding skiing, skating and other winter sports. And no, the lake doesn’t freeze in the winter, as it’s quite deep, but some smaller bays do become ice-encrusted.

Squaw Valley’s cable car (squaw.com) ports skiers in the winter and hikers and tourists in the summer. As the attached video shows, the panoramic views are eye-popping. The restaurant at the top is a bit pricy but enjoyable.

The Olympic Museum, focused mainly on the 1960 Winter Olympics, is worth the trip up the mountain and is located at the lower level of the cable car building. Other activities are offered at prices ranging from $10-34, all of which include the round-trip cable car ride.

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