(530) 546-5995

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Winter Sightseeing

Attractions

CaveRock

Cave Rock  |  East Shore
Drive through one of the area’s natural wonders – Cave Rock, the neck of an old volcano. The area is named for the small caves above Highway 50 that were cut by waves when Lake Tahoe was 200 feet higher during the ice ages.

 

DonnerSummit-c.DonnerSummitHistSoc

Courtesy Donner Summit Historical Society

Donner Summit  |  Truckee
Donner Summit, just west of Truckee, holds the record for the United States’ snowiest April. On April 1, 1880, a storm dumped 4’ of snow on the Sierra Nevada west slope within 24 hours. A massive snow slide near Emigrant Gap buried Central Pacific Railroad’s tracks under 75’ of snow, ice and rock. For the rest of the month, storm cycles continued to flow in, dropping a total of 298”.

 

EagleRock

Eagle Rock  |  West Shore
Eagle Rock, one of the lake’s famous natural sites, is a volcanic plug beside Highway 89 on the West Shore.

 

 FannetteIsland

Fannette Island                 
(530) 541-3030 | parks.ca.gov
Lake Tahoe’s only island located in Emerald Bay. Boat access only. (Closed Feb. 1-June 15 for nesting birds.)

 

 HighCamp-c.NathanKendall

Courtesy Nathan Kendall  |  Squaw Valley

High Camp  |  Olympic Valley
10:40 a.m.-4:20 p.m. May 24-Sept. 1 
Weekends only Sept. 6-21 | $10-$39
(800) 403-0206 | squaw.com
Aerial tram rides with views of Lake Tahoe, Olympic Heritage Museum, pool & hot tub, ice skating, events and more. Ticket required. TART

 

 NorthTahoeArtsCenter

North Tahoe Arts Center  | Tahoe City
11 a.m.-5 p.m. Wed.-Mon. | Free
(530) 581-2787 | northtahoearts.com
Featuring changing exhibits of work by local artists, along with a gift shop featuring items from local artisans. TART

 

TahoeCityDam

Tahoe City  |  North Shore
visittahoecity.com
Located at the junction of the West and North shores, Tahoe City is a popular area for shopping and dining with a number of historical sites within easy walking distance. At the wye (junction of Highways 89 and 28), visitors can see the Tahoe City Dam, Lake Tahoe’s only outlet, and Fanny Bridge. TART

 

TruckeeHotel

Truckee                 
truckeehistory.org |  truckee.com
The historic town of Truckee’s beginnings date back to 1848 with the discovery of gold
in Colma and silver in Virginia City, prompting the need for a road to connect the two. By 1863, the first white settlement was established near Donner Lake and was originally known as Gray’s Station for Joe Gray, the first white settler.

The town grew quickly as a frequent stagecoach stop and route for the Central Pacific Railroad. The town became a rowdy, mountain town filled with railroad workers and loggers, gambling houses and saloons. During these early days, many of Truckee’s historical homes and buildings were built including The Truckee Hotel (1868) and the Capitol Building (1868), the town’s oldest building.
The Truckee-Donner Historical Society has a walking tour available online or at the Visitors’ Center in The Depot highlighting all of the historic sites. TART

 

Museums

DSHS-SodaSpringsHotel

Donner Summit Historical Society  |  Soda Springs
donnersummithistoricalsociety.org
The Historical Society has a museum at the corner of Old Highway 40 and Soda Springs Road. There also is a 20-mile long interpretive driving tour along Old 40. Maps online or at museum. TART

 

EmigrantTrailMuseum

Emigrant Trail Museum  |  Truckee
10 a.m.-5 p.m. Thurs.-Mon. | $8 parking | $7 62+
(530) 582-7892 | parks.ca.gov
The ill-fated Donner Party suffered through the harsh winter of 1846-47 camped around Donner Lake and Truckee. The Donner Memorial State Park features exhibits and artifacts on the Donner Party at the Emigrant Trail Museum, and the towering Pioneer Monument.

 

Gatekeepers

Gatekeeper’s Museum   |  Tahoe City
10 a.m.-4 p.m. Fri.-Sat. & by appt.
$4-$5 | Free 12 & younger and military
(530) 583-1762 | northtahoemuseums.org
Featuring historic photos, the Steinbach Indian Basket Museum and local historical memorabilia. TART

 

Kidzone

KidZone Children’s Museum   |  Truckee
10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tues.-Fri., 10-1:30 p.m. Sat.-Sun.
Extended hours holiday periods
$4-$8 | Locals’ first Tues. half price
(530) 587-5437 | kidzonemuseum.org
A great place for kids up to age 7 with interactive exhibits, science and art classes, the BabyZone for newborns to 18 months and the Jungle Gym for toddlers and older. TART

 

Incline-Bonanza

Incline Village & Crystal Bay Historical Society  |  Incline Village
Daily | Free | tahoehistory.org
Maintaining a local history exhibit focusing on 1870 to 1970, along with a “Bonanza” exhibit in the Starbucks building, corner Tahoe & Village Blvds. TART

 

MuseumofSkiHistory-c.BillBriner

Courtesy Bill Briner

Museum of Sierra Ski History & the 1960 Olympic Winter Games  | Tahoe City
10 a.m.-6 p.m. daily | Free
Features official 1960 Winter Olympic items such as skis, promotional literature, collection of official Olympic photographer Bill Briner. Learn the history of skiing in the Sierra. Inside the Boatworks Mall. TART

 

OlympicHeritageMuseum

Olympic Museum  |  Olympic Valley
10:40 a.m.-4:20 p.m. May 24-Sept. 1 
Weekends only Sept. 6-21 | $10-$39
(800) 403-0206 | squaw.com
Squaw Valley, host of the VIII Winter Olympic Games in 1960, celebrates its Olympic History with the symbolic Tower of Nations and Olympic Flame at the entrance to the valley. The Olympic Museum at High Camp features historic memorabilia and photographs. Tram ticket required. TART

 

TahoeMaritimeMuseum 

Tahoe Maritime Museum  |  Homewood
10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Fri.-Sun.
$5 | Free 12 & younger
(530) 525-9253 | tahoemaritimemuseum.org
Visitors will find the Tahoe Maritime Museum featuring guided tours, exhibits and hands-on activities for kids. TART

 

ThomasJLong.TERC

Thomas J. Long Foundation Education Center  |  Incline Village
1-5 p.m. Tues.-Fri. & by appt. | Free
(775) 881-7566 | terc.ucdavis.edu
University of California, Davis, operates a science education center on the Sierra Nevada campus in Incline Village. Exhibits include a virtual research boat, biology lab, 3-D movies and docent-led tours. Ages 8+. TART

 

TruckeeRailroadMuseum

Truckee Railroad Museum  |  Truckee
10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat.-Sun. & holidays
truckeedonnerrailroadsociety.com
Operated by the Truckee Donner Railroad Society, the Truckee Railroad museum is located in a caboose next to the Truckee Depot. Exhibits include the train’s role in logging, fighting snow on the railway, the role of Chinese emigrants and a children’s area. TART

 

WesternSkiSportsMuseum 

Western SkiSport Museum  |  Donner Summit
Fri.-Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. | Free
(530) 426-3313, ext. 113 | auburnskiclub.org
Showcasing the history of skiing, exhibits include snowshoes from the 1850s, ski equipment from the 20th century and a pair of 8-foot-long skis used by John “Snowshoe” Thompson, a legendary mail carrier. Located at Boreal off I-80. TART

 

Visitors’ Centers

Kings Beach
Kings Beach State Rec. Area, Wed.-Mon. (summer)

Incline Village 
969 Tahoe Blvd., (800) 468-2463

Tahoe City 
100 North Lake Blvd., (530) 581-6900

Truckee 
10065 Donner Pass Road (Depot), (530) 587-8808

Forest Service, Incline Village
855 Alder Ave., (775) 831-0914 (Wed.-Fri.)

Forest Service, Tahoe City
3080 N. Lake Blvd., (530) 583-3593 (Fridays)

Forest Service, Truckee
10811 Stockrest Springs Road, (530) 587-3558