Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Beautiful Lake Tahoe Adventure

Earlier this month (June, 2021), Someone and I went on a “real” vacation – just the two of us – to a place we’ve never been before.  We stayed for a week, which was plenty of time to explore and have dinner with my cousin (our grandmothers were sisters). 

We stayed at David Walley’s Resort in Minden, Nevada.  The resort (David Walley’s) was wonderful – everything about it.  It’s out in the middle of nowhere – you get that impression when you see it from the highway.  But, once you start getting familiar with the area, you realize that the resort is very close to Carson City which has anything you could want, and minutes from Kingsbury Grade and Route 50, both which take you over the mountains to Lake Tahoe.  Genoa is within easy walking distance from the resort.  It's the oldest settlement in Nevada and very quaint.   We loved our suite. The hot springs were…well…interesting and different, and very beautiful.

View of springs from our balcony. The lilac near the railing smelled heavenly!

The hot springs were what enticed David Walley to build a resort in that location (many years ago). Hot water bubbles up through the ground in puddles around there. It’s full of minerals that are somehow associated with good health.  People with arthritis and other ailments use to come and soak in the spring water long ago (as shown in old pictures posted around the resort).  On our last night at the resort, we tested out the hot springs. Because of our litigious society, the resort modernized the springs experience for guests by creating five small pools for people to sit in - they are much like swimming pools. They have to control the temperature and filter the water so that people don’t get burned or sick. We sat in several of the pools (some were just too hot for one or both of us).  It was interesting and pleasant at times, but the water made my skin and swimsuit smell like sulfur. I was grateful to take a shower afterwards.  It was very much like sitting in a bubbling, hot jacuzzi that smelled bad. 

We could see the hot spring (kind of like a creek) from our balcony at the resort.  Steam rose off of it in the mornings – the temperature there was in the 40s (F), even in June.  We were walking along the creek on the path when we came to a water puddle with what looked like little air bubbles.  I watched the bubbles for a moment and wondered if the water was actually boiling, or if perhaps a creature was below the surface, or perhaps something below such as a pipe was leaking and causing air bubbles.  Silly me, I stuck my fingers in the water to test it…yes, it was boiling water. 😊

Lake Tahoe is beautiful! The first time we saw it (just as we drove over the top of the last mountain), we said “OHHH” simultaneously.  Pictures cannot do it justice.  The water is bluest blue and along the shore where it’s not so deep, you can see rocks on the bottom: clean, clear water.  I took more than 300 photos of mountains, lakes, pinecones, trees, and flowers.  We hiked 9 to 14 miles everyday that we were there.

My two favorite places were Spooner Lake and Sugar Pines Point State Park. The sugar pines have the most gigantic pinecones I’ve ever seen in my life. They are 14 to 15 inches long and when you try to wrap your hands around them, your fingers don’t touch. Spooner Lake has a trail around the entire lake (a little less than three miles) with beautiful, tall aspen trees and lupines growing all around it. The Spooner Lake trail is easy walking – the trail is well worn so you don’t have to constantly look down to keep from tripping over rocks and roots.

Our flights out and back were uneventful and surprisingly (pleasantly) on time. Flying used to be fun, but these days, not so much.  We had to wear masks in the airports and on the flights.  I’m not a fan of masks, but I follow rules about such things. I am hoping the rules change for vaccinated adults (at least) before the next time I fly.  

For anyone who enjoys hiking and biking, swimming and boating, or just walking outside, visit Lake Tahoe. You won’t be disappointed.   

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