Truckee is a hotspot for anybody looking to spend as much time outdoors as possible during their vacation. One of the best parts of this is that there’s something unique for you to experience during every season, so you can visit multiple times and have an entirely different experience. Even as tourism to the area grows, you’ll still be able to find plenty of space in the area as long as you plan your vacation far enough in advance.
Winter in Tahoe Visitors
Winter in Tahoe is absolutely one of the busiest seasons to come, and it’s little wonder why. People from all over the country who want to test their skiing and snowboarding skills flock to the area to see some of the best slopes in the nation, and there are a ton of ski resorts around to accommodate everyone.
There’s plenty more to see than just the ski resorts, though, because winter transforms Truckee into a gorgeous, snowcapped sight that has to be seen to be believed. Some of the frequented summer trails with their gorgeous lakes will transform into a snow-covered trail with tranquil frozen streams and lakes. If you manage to catch one of these trails on a particularly slow day, you’ll be stunned by the serenity, so quiet that you can even hear the sound of the snow settling and the ice shifting.
Every Winter Sport and Then Some
There are seven different ski resorts all within a 45-minute drive of Truckee, giving you a wealth of options during your stay. This is considered world class terrain for winter sports enthusiasts, and you won’t want to miss out on the opportunity.
Resorts have their own different styles, so there’s a little something for people of all skill levels. Beginners will find that certain resorts don’t have any of those pesky black diamond slopes for you to worry about, so they can be a great place to take the kids if they’re hesitant about getting the hang of it. Then there are also some slopes that might intimidate even more seasoned winter athletes, with 20-foot drops, double black diamonds, and skull and crossbones signs that litter the trail.
Anyone into cross country skiing will also enjoy having access to the largest cross country ski area in all of North America. You’ll be striding or skating across mile after mile of perfectly groomed trails in no time, and don’t forget to take in all of the stunning views while you’re at it. If you’re new to it and aren’t sure if cross country skiing is for you, there’s also people who offer lessons.
Tubing and sledding also have a variety of different locations to bring the family to. Some of the resorts set up nice, relaxing slopes that the kids will enjoy, and they even have gear on site for you to use if you don’t have your own. If you’re looking for something more intense, you’ll be able to find it, but make sure you bring along some sturdy equipment that won’t break during the ride.
Ice skating rinks start opening up when the winter really hits, and they make for a great, relaxing destination without having to make any trips out of town. If you want to stay local, stop by one of the skating rinks in Truckee, and if you’re in town before Christmas hits, you’ll get to see them lit up in their holiday best. Skate rentals are offered as well as lessons.
See the Winter Olympics Museum
If you make a roughly 20-minute drive out of Truckee you’ll be able to visit the historic Winter Olympics Museum, which will provide you with an informative experience about the 1960 Winter Olympics and the American athletes that competed. You’ll be able to see actual equipment used during the games, as well as outfits from some of the competitors.
Spring starts to slow down just a little, sending all of the winter sports experts home when the ski season comes to an end. It still stays decently chilly without getting too cold but do keep in mind that there’s a distinct possibility you’ll still run into snow while you’re here. One of the best parts of Tahoe in the spring is that the waters all thaw out, so you’ll be able to get the most out of your kayaking experience while beating the summer crowds.
With the weather easing up from rough driving conditions, you’ll feel comfortable knowing that the entirety of the area has really opened up to you, and you’ll be able to hit every destination on your travel list as long as you’ve got the time on your trip. Truckee makes for a good jumping point to a lot of the greatest trails and attractions, so do yourself a favor and get some extra research done before you get into town. You’ll thank yourself later when you’re hitting all of the best destinations instead of stumbling into them.
Get Out and See the Lakes
Tahoe in the spring is arguably the best time to go and see the lakes, many of which are accessible via beginner to moderate level hiking trails. Cascade Creek Falls is a nice and easy one to bring the family along with for an easier one-mile hike with a prime destination for viewing the falls and stopping for a lunch or quick snack while you take a break. Parts of this hike have some steep climbs with rocks or steps that you’ll have to traverse, but if you bring along a good pair of boots you won’t have any trouble making it.
If you’re looking for a more challenging hike with a stunning view at the end, consider heading over to Eagle Falls Trail, which will let you see both Eagle Falls and Eagle Lake if you’re able to make the entire trip. You’ll only have to make it about a third of a mile in order to get a good view of the falls, and another mile will get you to the lake itself. If you’re able to make the trip, it’s definitely worth it, especially if you’re there when some of the snow starts to melt and you get to see the runoff set the falls into full swing. This trail is rated intermediate to difficult, so pack accordingly.
If you’re bringing the kids or the family dog along on the trip, there are definitely easier trails that will keep them out of danger. Sagehen Creek Trail is a great one, especially for groups with pets. The loop itself clocks in at roughly six miles, making it quite the long walk, but it’s all very easily maneuvered flat land with plenty of wildflowers and birds coloring up the scenery. It’s usually pretty crowded, but if you stick it out and make it a few miles in, you’ll find it gets much more secluded.
Once the snow dies or down or completely thaws away, avid mountain bikers will find a wide variety of trails to enjoy. You’ll be able to take a casual ride along a beginner trail or find that incredibly challenging double black diamond course that pushes your skills to the limit.
Starting with a nice and easy one, we have Sidewinder. This is a pretty popular trail, clocking in at two miles of mostly flat land for a nice and safe trip. It’s also pretty low commitment, since you’ll be able to turn around and ride back in the other direction if you don’t feel like making the whole journey. It only takes about 14 minutes to make the trip, making it a perfect trail for a quick stop off.
Stepping it up to intermediate to difficult brings us to the Hole in the Ground trail. This is a great challenge for people who are looking to work on their uphill skills, since the trail involves a lot of tricky climbs with rocks and slopes. The way down is a lot of fun, though, and while you’re gliding through the trail, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to make some jumps and wall rides, and you might even get to see some wildlife off to the side.
There are a handful of challenging and treacherous double black diamond trails here, too. Be mindful for all of them and be sure to do some research to see if one stands out to you, and also make sure they’re open at the time since closures can happen on these courses fairly often.
Great During Both Seasons
There are, of course, certain things that are just as much during spring as they are in winter, which is great. Truckee is a wonderfully accessible place, and the town is really friendly. You’ll love making your way around and seeing all of the attractions in town, and depending on when you’re holding your vacation, you might even get to see some special events.
Check Out Downtown
Downtown Truckee is great, especially if you’re looking to grab a bite to eat. There’s a good selection of restaurants, and many of them cater to different types of meals. You’ll find your classy, fine dining restaurants for a nice dinner with the family, and your more classic locations for a quick bite like cafes and delis. Here are some of our favorites.
Moody’s Bistro & Bar
If you’re looking for a classy lounge atmosphere to have a nice dinner in, Moody’s is the place to go. They often host critically praised touring acts that play several different genres of music. You’ll be able to dine with the accompaniment of live Jazz, Americana, Soul, and Rhythm & Blues bands. They post who’s going to be playing on their calendar, so if you’re keen on catching a specific act then just check in advance and make your reservation.
Their menu is certainly nothing to laugh at, either, offering up a wide variety of fine dining options that will keep you coming back for more. Let executive chef William Burns treat your taste buds to an incredible experience found only in Truckee.
Fifty Fifty Brewing
People love a great local brew, and Fifty Fifty is happy to provide. You’ll love sampling some unique Truckee beers brewed in an environmentally friendly, sustainable environment. Fifty Fifty is as dedicated to quality beer as they are preserving the wonderful place they live in, making it a business worth supporting.
Their pub is open and inviting, and you’ll be able to stop in to grab a casual lunch or dinner whenever the mood strikes. This isn’t a pretentious place, and they welcome people of all styles and tastes. Their menu is as varied as their customer base, so stop in and try something special, and don’t forget to enjoy the beautifully crafted pub atmosphere.
Wild Cherries Coffee House
Sometimes you’re just looking for a quick cup of coffee and a snack to get your day going, and a coffee house always makes for a good stop. Wild Cherries takes their business seriously, though, and you’re likely to find some of the best coffee you’ve had when you stop by in addition to their lovingly prepared cafe treats. Enjoy some carefully selected brews and have a delicious European style pastry to start your day off right.
Come by and See It All
No matter which season you’re planning on stopping by to visit us, you’ll be comfortably accommodated throughout your entire stay. Tahoe Signature Properties has put together a comprehensive portfolio of rental homes located in the Truckee area. They come in all shapes and sizes, so you can stop by for a secluded cabin getaway or bring the family along to have as many outdoor adventures as you can fit into a vacation. Our team of agents knows our properties like the back of their hand, and they’ll make sure to work with you and find the perfect home. Get in touch with us now and come see how beautiful it is in Truckee! Check out some of the best attractions and activities in Truckee and Tahoe today.