My wife and I decided on a whim to take a long detour to Lake Tahoe on our way from Yosemite to San Francisco. I have had a longing to see the lake since watching Bonanza each week as a kid. While we only had about 5 hours in the area, it was well worth getting up early enough to leave Yosemite at 6:00 a.m. and spending several extra hours on the road. The drive through the high country was scenic and we enjoyed the scenery. We both also got to add Nevada to our list of states visited.
Once we arrived at the lake, we got tickets for the Tahoe Queen. We had a little time to kill, so we had a very nice lunch with a view at Zephry Cove and a walk along the beach.
As we boarded the boat, a photographer insisted on taking our picture. We never buy these, but since this trip was for our 25th anniversary, we made the purchase. We were then greeted by none other than Mark Twain. He asked where we were from and had a few witty things to say about Tennessee. While I know you can't base history on old tv shows, I was reminded of an early episode of Bonanza that revolved around journalist "Sam Clemens" visiting Virginia City and also a later episode where the plot involved robbers and their plan to use a paddle boat to escape across Lake Tahoe with a stolen pay roll.
Lake Tahoe is more beautiful that I could have imagined. I have never seen water that had the shades of blue and emerald as Tahoe. I have a much better appreciation for the "Keep Tahoe Blue" bumper stickers I see. The paddle boat made its way from Zephry Cove, around Emerald Isle and back to the dock on the 2.5 hour tour. We were there in mid-June, but there was still a little snow on the surrounding mountaintops. I felt like I was living in a post card. Mr. Twain did a stand-up act in the dining area. We chose to listen over the PA system so we could enjoy the view. We used our time top deck to take pictures and feel the wind in our face.
While we only got a very small taste of Tahoe, the time we spent on the boat, and then driving around the eastern side of the lake made both of us put spending several days in Lake Tahoe a "must do" on our list of future travel plans.
If you go to the Tahoe area, take the cruise. You will be glad you did.
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