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Marmot's Top Tahoe Activities Picks

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RESTAURANTS

BREAKFAST

  • OLD POST OFFICE (530) 546-3205
    Located in the heart of Carnelian Bay. Leave your cell phones in the car (the owner hates them and isn’t shy about letting you know it) and come on in for a delicious breakfast or lunch. Serving all the traditional favorites. They typically serve meals rather quickly. If you wait, it won’t be long.
  • WILD CHERRIES (530) 587-4312
    Located on Donner Pass Road in Truckee, Wild Cherries is a great place to start off your day. Offering fresh baked goods, wraps, sandwiches, salads, chili, coffee drinks and more. Wild Cherries is a WI-FI spot too! Open from 6am-6pm daily, but the kitchen closes at 4pm. Plenty of parking and tables.
  • FIRESIGN CAFÉ (530) 583-0871
    Located near Sunnyside, 2 miles south on highway 89. A favorite spot for the locals! Firesign serves healthy, hearty food (i.e. pecan waffles & tofu burgers) in a comfortable atmosphere. Expect to wait if you don’t get there early… it’s worth it. Open through lunch with outside seating in the summer.
  • LOG CABIN (530) 546-7109
    7109 N. Lake Blvd. Located in Kings Beach on the lakeside of North Lake Blvd. The Log Cabin offers both traditional and unique dishes that will delight your taste buds. Enjoy breakfast or lunch 7 days a week in a comfortable cabin setting, with outdoor seating available in the summer.
  • THE SQUEEZE INN (530) 587-9814
    Located in the heart of historic downtown Truckee, the Squeeze Inn is known for its large selection of omelets. They also offer other breakfast classics as well as lunch. Open from 7am until 2pm daily, this is a popular spot so expect a wait especially on weekends and holidays.

LUNCH AND DINNER

  • BRIDGETENDER (530) 583-3342
    Located next to Fanny Bridge at the “Y”, where Highway 89 and Highway 28 split. Turn down 89 going south and immediately turn right into the BT. They have the best burgers and waffle fries in town! Open for lunch and dinner. Enjoy their outside dining by the Truckee River or saddle up to their full bar.
  • SUNNYSIDE RESTAURANT (530) 583-7200
    Located 2 miles south of Tahoe City on highway 89. Sunnyside offers beautiful lake views and a large deck for outdoor dining, weather permitting. Boat in for lunch, dinner or Sunday brunch and let their dock staff assist you. Try an order of shrimp cocktail presented in an elegant martini glass or feast on a mouth-watering chicken sandwich while enjoying spectacular sights of Lake Tahoe.
  • CHAMBERS LANDING GRILL (530) 525-7262
    A Lake Tahoe summer must! Chambers Landing Grill is located 7 miles south of Tahoe and well worth the drive. It’s easy to miss however, so keep your eyes peeled for the sign (lakeside, just past Homewood Ski Resort), or just boat in. The grill is located right on Chambers Landing Beach and is a great place to enjoy a burger, the house cocktail “Chambers Punch” and amazing lake views. Closed for the winter.
  • FRONT STREET STATION (530) 583-3770
    If you are craving pizza this is the place to go. Located across from the Chevron Station right as you pull into Tahoe City on Highway 89 South. Front Street offers a variety of specialty pizzas, as well as fresh made salads, hot subs, and slices. Just wait until you taste the 100% hand tossed New York Style thin crust. Deck seating looking over the Truckee River (weather permitting). Open for lunch and dinner. There is not much seating so it is better to take it to go.
  • BIG WATER GRILLE (775) 833-0606
    The Big Water Grille is known as one of Incline Village’s favorite dining venues because of the spectacular views, the comfortable atmosphere, and the delicious food. With a large full bar, lounge and outside deck, they offer something for everyone.
  • DRAGONFLY (530) 587-8688
    Dragonfly is located upstairs in the historic downtown Truckee strip at 10118 Donner Pass Rd. Dragonfly’s menu is a unique blend of Thai, Japanese, Indian and Malaysian cuisines. They use only the freshest ingredients and the presentation is first class. The atmosphere makes for the perfect dining adventure. In the summer they open up their deck which overlooks downtown Truckee. Open daily for lunch 11am-2:30pm and for dinner 5:30-9:30pm. Reservations Suggested.
  • JAKE'S ON THE LAKE (530) 583-0188
    Located on the lake in the Boatworks Mall, Jake's overlooks Tahoe City's Largest Marina and offers spectacular lake views from almost every table. Enjoy classic California cuisine with infused flavors, fresh ingredients and exciting presentations. The menu features an impressive selection of fresh fish, shellfish and steaks. Jake's is open for lunch, dinner and also offers a cafe menu. Jake's is a locals and family favorite. Reservations suggested.
  • SPINDLESHANKS (530) 546-2191
    Located in Tahoe Vista at 6873 North Lake Blvd., Spindleshanks is known for pleasing wine connoisseurs. The menu offers something for everyone in a welcoming, Tahoe-esque atmosphere. Spindleshanks is a great bar for wine tasting and appetizers. Thursday is Ladies Night.
  • COTTONWOOD (530) 587-5711
    You can’t miss the Cottonwood Restaurant perched on the hill overlooking Truckee with the lit up Hilltop Lodge sign (on old Ski Lodge). Located at 10142 Rue Hilltop, the Cottonwood cuisine features seafood, steak and other California Cuisine favorites. Live music if offered almost every Thursday and Friday night in the bar area. Check out cottonwoodrestaurant.com for more details. Open daily for dinner. Reservations suggested.
  • HIRO SUSHI (530) 546-4476
    Recently remodeled, Hiro Sushi serves up arguably the finest sushi on the North Shore of Lake Tahoe (make sure to try the house rolls). Choose either the a la carte or all you can eat option. Hiro is quite cozy and popular so don’t be surprised if the wait is over an hour and if Hiro himself is making your dinner. Hiro Sushi is located in Kings Beach in front of Lisa’s Motel.
  • MAMASAKE (530) 584-0114
    Situated in the Village at Squaw Valley, Mamasake offers a fun and unique atmosphere sure to please. Enjoy their creative appetizers, maki rolls, and large portions of nigiri and sashimi. Don’t miss the in-house movie series on the big screen. Eat raw @ Squaw. Open for lunch and dinner.
  • BITE RESTAURANT AND LOUNGE (775) 831-5100
    Bite offers delicious tapas made from the freshest ingredients. The atmosphere is casual, but elegant. The service is super friendly. Bite serves affordable yet unique wines their scratch-cocktails are infamous. Bite is an Incline Village favorite!
  • SOULE DOMAIN (530) 546-7529
    Located on Stateline Drive, next to the Biltmore Casino in Crystal Bay. This authentic log cabin is complete with stone fireplaces. It has been voted as the most romantic restaurant/best place to take a date. The owners are always on the premises to ensure the best quality. Soule Domain is a great place to enjoy fresh seafood and generous cuts of meat in an intimate setting.
  • LONE EAGLE GRILL (775) 886-6899
    Located at 111 Country Club Drive across from the Hyatt in Incline Village. You can’t beat the lake views and setting of their lounge and dining room. It is worth the drive just to be there in their warm, wood and log accented space, not to mention a full rack of New Zealand lamb or wild mushroom quesadillas and live music 4-5 nights a week. Also offering a great Sunday brunch. Reservations suggested.
  • MOFOS PIZZA AND PASTA (775)831-4999
    Mofos is ideal for children and large gatherings. They serve hearty Italian dishes and every kind of pizza at affordable prices. With pizza dough in hand to play with, children are often enthralled watching the pizza dough being spun and thrown in the air in the kitchen. A great family restaurant!
  • MOODY’S BISTRO AND LOUNGE (530) 587-8688
    Located in the Truckee Hotel in historic downtown Truckee, this unique eatery offers fresh, simple and seasonal cuisine with a hip, art-deco ambiance (oversized velvet booths and airy, open kitchen). Live jazz combos play in the lounge every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Open at 10:00am and staying open ’til late night.
  • RIVER GRILL (530) 581-2644
    The River Grill is located on the banks of the Truckee River, at the "Y" in Tahoe City, Ca. They feature seasonal California Cuisine, a very moderately priced wine list, and a full bar. There are views from almost all the tables inside and in the summer months tall pines trees canopy the two tiered deck for a gourmet outdoor experience. Reservations are suggested.
  • SUNNYSIDE RESTAURANT (530) 583-7200
    Located 2 miles south of Tahoe City on highway 89. Sunnyside offers beautiful lake views and a large deck for outdoor dining, weather permitting. Boat in for lunch, dinner or Sunday brunch and let their dock staff assist you. Try an order of crab cakes or the iceberg wedge salad while enjoying spectacular sights of Lake Tahoe.
  • LANZA’S (530) 546-2434
    Located next to the King’s Beach Safeway, Lanza’s offers traditional, home-style Italian dishes and pizzas. Enjoy dinner in a cozy, family atmosphere. The fresh bread and salad are included in most dishes. Don’t forget to save room for the homemade cheesecake. A local’s choice for Italian! First come, first serve and definitely worth the wait.
  • ZANO'S FAMILY ITALIAN AND PIZZERIA (530) 587-7411
    Located at 11401 Donner Pass Rd., Zano’s is a great family restaurant offering soups, salads, pasta dishes, family Italian classics as well as pizza. There is plenty of seating and parking but you might expect a wait as this is a popular family spot with an arcade for the kids! Open for lunch Thurs-Sun 11:30-2pm, dinner Sun-Thurs 4-9:30pm and Fri. and Sat. 4-10pm. Dine in or take out. www.zanos.net

HIKING TRAILS

FROM THE LAKE

  • MT. ROSE MEADOWS
    Easy
    Mileage round-trip: 1.5 miles.
    A beautiful, flat hike through a high alpine meadow and forest. Take Mt. Rose Highway from Incline Village about 9 miles. About 1/2 mile before the summit, look for a large pullout and a drive to a parking lot on the right hand side. There is a trailhead sign and restrooms.
  • DIAMOND PEAK LAKEVIEW OVERLOOK
    Moderate
    Mileage to Overlook: about 1 mile, to Mt. Rose Hwy on Incline Flume is about 4 miles.
    Not pristine as the hike is up a service road at a ski resort, but you are rewarded by the best views of the lake offered anywhere. Bring your picnic lunch! From downtown Incline Village, take Hwy 28, (Tahoe Boulevard), toward South Lake. Make a left on Country Club and a quick right on Skiway. Take Skiway to the upper lot at Diamond Peak Ski Resort. Climb up the well-worn service road. If you have kids, take a brief detour to the base of the Crystal Express chair and catch some pollywogs! Keep right at all junctions and follow the road to the Lakeview Lodge which is at the top of the Lakeview chair. Pick a nice place on the deck and soak up the sun. For extra credit, return the way you came but at the first junction, make a right on the service road and follow it up. Just as it becomes steep, the Incline Flume crosses the road. Go left for great views. This trail will take you all the way to Mt. Rose Highway. This flat, traversing trail is popular for both families and trail runners.
  • MARLETTE LAKE
    Moderate to difficult
    Mileage one-way: 5 miles
    Park at the Spooner Lake Trailhead, located in Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park, just north/west of the Highway 50/28 junction. A parking fee is charged. Dogs are allowed on leash. A moderate five mile uphill hike leads you through picturesque North Canyon, lined with aspens, to Marlette Lake Dam. Following the trail along the west side of the lake takes you to the world-famous Flume Trail which traverses a steep hillside 1000' above Lake Tahoe. Following the trail along the east side takes you to the Tahoe Rim Trail... another world-class adventure.

IN AND AROUND TRUCKEE

  • MARTIS VALLEY
    Easy
    Round trip: 4 miles
    From Northstar, take Hwy 267 toward Truckee. In the middle of the Martis Valley, look for a pullout and parking area on the right hand side. Park here at the trailhead and begin a loop through the valley.
  • TAHOE RIM TRAIL, BROCKWAY SUMMIT TO MT. ROSE MEADOWS
    Moderate to hard
    Round trip: as long as you want it to be!
    From Northstar, take Hwy 267 toward Lake Tahoe. About a 1/2 mile from the summit, as you begin to descend toward the Lake, look for a parking area on the right. If you cross Hwy 267, the TRT will take you toward Mt. Rose Meadows and beyond. Stunning lake views. We recommend taking the scenic overlook that branches off to the left about 1 mile up the trail. This provides a nice picnic spot that has views both to Lake Tahoe and toward Truckee.
  • TAHOE RIM TRAIL, BROCKWAY SUMMIT TO WATSON LAKE
    Moderate to hard
    Round trip: as long as you want it to be!
    From Northstar, take Hwy 267 toward Lake Tahoe. About a 1/2 mile from the summit, as you begin to descend toward the Lake, look for a parking area on the right. Start at the parking area and descend on the TRT. The descent quickly turns to a climb as you work your way toward Tahoe City via Watson Lake. Stunning lake views in a deep forest.

BIKE TRAILS

TRUCKEE RIVER LEGACY TRAIL Easy
From Downtown, head east on Brockway Road. Just past the Palisades Drive stoplight, turn left into Truckee River Regional Park. The trail begins here. The Truckee River Legacy Trail is a trail being built in phases that, when complete, will offer a route from Donner Memorial State Park to Glenshire, along the Truckee River.
SAWTOOTH TRAIL Moderate
From Downtown, head east on Brockway Road. At the first light (Palisades Drive) turn right. Turn right again on Silver Fir, and then left on Thelin. The USFS 06 road is on the right. Turn here and proceed ¼ mile to the trailhead on the right. This trail is a winding single-track loop through a mix of high desert and Jeffrey Pine Forest. It gains and loses the same 200 feet numerous times throughout its course. Some of the standout features of this trail are the two overlooks into the Truckee River Canyon, and the available connectivity to other routes on the Mt. Watson trail network. Popular as a day hike, trail run, or mountain bike ride. Total loop is 9 miles.
COMMEMORATIVE OVERLAND EMIGRANT TRAIL (EMIGRANT TRAIL) Easy/Moderate
From Downtown, proceed northeast on Donner Pass Road. At the roundabout with SR 89N, merge onto SR 89N. Proceed 4.5 miles to the US Forest Service facility called Donner Camp picnic area on the right side of the road. Note 1: the section from Donner Camp to Prosser Creek is often one of the last parts of the trail to dry in the spring. If it is still wet and snowy here, proceed north on SR 89 N another 2.5 miles to the pullout at the Prosser Creek Bridge. Note 2: Later in the year, the trail can be accessed from many pull outs on Alder Creek Drive, which the trail parallels for 3 miles (access by making a Left from Hwy 89 onto Alder Creek Drive after leaving downtown Truckee.) However, in the spring, the Alder Creek crossings may be impassable.

This very popular trail offers rolling, not-rocky, wide single-track through high desert scenery. The trail winds through sagebrush, seasonally wet meadows, and Jeffrey Pine forests. The total trail length, from the Tahoe Donner Campground to Stampede Reservoir is over 15 miles, but, as it is an out-and-back, go as far as you want to go! Popular for early season hiking, early season wildflower and deer viewing, running, and mountain biking. Can be hot in mid-summer, but there’s a nice big reservoir in which to swim (Stampede) at the end point of this trail.
THE FLUME TRAIL Moderate to Difficult
From Downtown Truckee, turn right onto Brockway Rd. At the junction with SR 267, turn right again, and stay on SR 267 for about 12 miles. At North Lake Blvd in Kings Beach, turn left. At the CA/NV border, North Lake Blvd becomes NV SR 28. Proceed on this road. Turn left into Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park, and follow the signs to the trailhead. As this trail can be linked with other trails for varying experiences, routes vary. Here are a few suggestions:
  1. Arrange a pick-up shuttle with the Flume Trail Bike Shop at the bottom of Tunnel Creek Road. Proceed up North Canyon Road to Marlette Lake. The Flume Trail begins on the opposite side of the Lake, by the Dam. Take the Flume Trail to its terminus at Tunnel Creek Road. Descend Tunnel Creek Road, where your shuttle awaits. Note: Bicyclist, please descend with caution! Tunnel Creek Road is steep and sandy and high speed washouts leading to injury are common!
  2. 23 mile loop: Proceed up North Canyon Road to Marlette Lake. The Flume Trail begins on the opposite side of the Lake, by the Dam. Take the Flume Trail to its terminus at Tunnel Creek Road. Turn right on Tunnel Creek Road, and right again on the Tahoe Rim Trail. Take The Tahoe Rim Trail to Marlette Lake, and return down North Canyon Road.
  3. Do the above loop in reverse, with an out-and-back to Tahoe Meadows, on the Tahoe Rim Trail. This route adds about 12 miles to the overall distance, with a lot of climbing (and descending in return). Proceed across Tunnel Creek Road on the TRT to add this spur onto the loop. Physical difficulty increases to strenuous to very strenuous.
Note: Due to use conflicts, a not mandatory, but strongly advised guideline has been put in place: From Tahoe Meadows to Tunnel Creek Road, bicycles are discouraged from using the trail on odd numbered days. On even days, hikers that believe this guideline is law are often openly belligerent to bicyclists, so please do this ride on even-numbered days.
HOLE IN THE GROUND Difficult to Expert
From Downtown head west on I-80 for 10 miles to the exit marked Boreal Ridge Road/Castle Peak. Turn Right onto Castle Valley Road and park at the end of the pavement. Proceed on Castle Valley Road for 1.5 miles and the trailhead will be on the left. It is a bit obscure and is tucked away in a grove of big Red Firs. If you end up at the junction of Castle Valley Road and the PCT, you went a mile too far. The trailhead at the Soda Springs end of the trail is accessed at the Soda Springs/Norden exit of I80. Turn right at the off ramp and park on either side of the road by the fire station. Respect the No Parking signs.

This ride is a yearly must-do for the Tahoe mountain biker. The trail’s technical challenge combined with the alpine beauty and numerous lakes make it one of the more popular trails in California. It also makes for a great hike and trail run, and the wildflowers are not to be missed! For a nice hiking loop, take the Hole in the Ground out, turn right on the Sand Ridge Trail, and the right again on the PCT, back to the trail head. Note: this hike is CLOSED TO BICYCLES. With the construction on I-80, and the lack of an official right-of-way between I-80 and U.S. 40, cyclists are urged by the Land Managers to ride the HitG as an out and back this year.
NORTHSTAR MOUNTAIN BIKE PARK All levels (trail passes can be purchased at Northstar Ski Area)
From Downtown, turn east onto Brockway RD. At the junction with SR 267, turn right. At the Northstar stoplight, turn right again, and follow the signs to the park. Often known for the mountain’s extremely technical but fun downhill trails, Northstar has beautiful rolling single tracks as well. Northstar has excellent facilities, including a knowledgeable staff, good maps, pubs, restaurants, and a bike shop. Inquire with a Northstar person for routes best suited to the experience desired.
TRUCKEE RIVER BIKE PATH Easy
From Downtown, enter onto I80 West, exit at Squaw Valley/CA 89 exit, take roundabout under the freeway and stay straight on CA 89, follow CA 89 to squaw valley/Olympic Valley, take right at squaw valley Olympic flame monument, take first left and park your vehicle at the squaw valley park. Paved bike and walking path with painted direction striping. Beatuful scenery along the Truckee River with multiple locations to stop and swim or enjoy the scenery. Trail proceeds to Tahoe City Park where there is ample parking as well.

EMERGENCY NUMBERS

  • EMERGENCIES: 911
  • MARMOT VACATION RENTALS
    (530) 852-2089
    (530) 448-6530
  • ROAD CONDITIONS:
    California - (800) 427-7623
    Nevada - (775) 793-1313
  • WEATHER CONDITIONS:
    (916) 646-2000
  • ROAD SERVICE (24 hours):
    All North Shore, West Shore and Truckee - (530) 587-6000 / (530) 581-1000
    AAA Members - (800) 222-4357
    NAC Members - (530) 583-5502
  • HOSPITALS:
    Tahoe Forest Hospital (Truckee) - (530) 587-6011
    Incline Village Community Hospital - (775) 832-4110
    Incline Village Urgent Care - (775) 833-2929
  • DENTISTS( on call 24 hours):
    Dr. Faul, Tahoe City - (530) 583-8646
    Dr. Kucharski, Kings Beach- (530) 546-5678
  • HIGHWAY PATROL:
    California Non-emergency - (530) 587-3518
    Nevada Non-emergency - (775) 687-5300
  • SHERIFF(Non-emergency):
    Nevada County, CA - (530) 582-7842
    (Truckee, Donner Lake, Donner Summit)
    Placer County, CA - (530) 581-6300
    (North Tahoe, Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows)
    Washoe County, NV - (775) 832-4110
    (Incline Village, Crystal Bay)
  • VETERINARIANS/LOST PETS:
    Nevada County Shelter - (530) 582-7830
    Placer County Shelter - (530) 546-4269
    Washoe County Shelter - (775) 785-2275
    Incline Veterinary Hospital - (775) 831-0433
    North Lake Veterinary Clinic - (24 hour/Tahoe City) (530) 583-8587