The wonders of fall in Tahoe

Kokanee salmon swirl in Taylor Creek in South Lake Tahoe as they go through the spawning process each fall in Tahoe. Photography by Sky Emerson |, @SummitSidePhotoVideo

One of the many spectacles of fall in the Tahoe Sierra – along of course with the heart-stopping mountainsides awash in color explosions – is the annual spawning of the kokanee salmon in Taylor Creek in South Lake Tahoe (as featured on our cover).

It’s worth visiting Taylor Creek to explore the spawning grounds. Be sure to visit the Rainbow Trail, which connects to the unique Stream Profile Chamber. It features an aquarium-like viewing chamber so visitors can watch the fish underwater in the creek. And, be sure to return for the annual Fall Fish Festival on Oct. 5 and 6 at Taylor Creek.

Afterwards, explore the nearby Glen Alpine Springs. The historic resort is easily accessible from a 2-mile roundtrip hike from the far end of Fallen Leaf Lake, a great spot for fall color viewing. Alex Silgalis made a recent visit for his feature on “Glen Alpine Springs: Jaw-dropping views at historic resort.”

We also feature other great trails to explore from Hawk’s Peak in Tahoe Donner to the family-friendly Skunk Harbor trail on the East Shore in this edition. Don’t forget to keep your eyes open for gooseberries to forage. Just be careful of those sharp spikes, as Food Editor Priya Hutner discovered for her feature in this issue “Foraging for Sierra Gooseberries.”

As always, there’s no lack of great events to enjoy this weekend from the Spartan Race World Championship, to two Oktoberfest celebrations, the Sierra Art + Ag Trail and much more.