Amazing Tahoe books to read from Tahoe Weekly contributors

Views of Lake Tahoe from the Tahoe Rim Trail. | Tim Hauserman

Tahoe Weekly has great, local contributors that not only pen articles for Tahoe Weekly’s print and online editions, but many of them are also published fiction and nonfiction authors. Several of them are also quite prolific.

If you’re looking for some good reading during this time of social distancing, I recommend ordering a copy from one of our Tahoe Weekly contributors to support them and their great work – Kayla Anderson, Geolyn Carvin, Tim Hauserman, Barbara Keck, Mark McLaughlin, Lisa Michelle, Kathryn Reed and Mike White.

Kayla Anderson

Kayla is a long-time local writer, author and marketing maven, who has worked with Tahoe Weekly contributing features on local makers, Tahoe’s foodie culture, local profiles and recreation.

I don’t believe Kayla’s never met a challenge she can’t master and kick some ass while doing it. Check out some of her most memorable challenges she’s done for Tahoe Weekly from “16 Chutes in One Day” on Mt. Rose’s Chutes and “From Tahoe’s Slopes to Big Blue. 5 sports in One Day” after the epic 2017 winter season to her ongoing series for the last few years on “Tahoe’s Best Burgers.”

She recently released the “Northern California Road Trips” guidebook from Moon Books, and will be doing a virtual talk with Incline Village Library on April 21; details TBA.

“I believe the best way to relieve your wanderlust right now is to start planning your next trip,” says Kayla. “A good start is with my new Moon travel book, ‘Northern California Road Trips.’ Co-authored with Stuart Thornton, we share our favorite places to sleep, dine, hike, camp, and see in Northern California.”

The book is available at Barnes and Noble, Amazon, IndieBound or directly through Moon Books at moon.com. | kaylaanderson.org

Geolyn Carvin

I was first introduced to Geolyn’s work (and immediately became a fan) when I received a preview copy of her book “On the Trail with Boots McFarland-Volume 1,” a collection of humorous and thoughtful outdoor comics interspersed with entries from the artist’s Pacific Crest Trail journal.

After reading through her cartoons and sharing them my coworkers, I invited Geolyn to share her illustrations in each edition of Tahoe Weekly. I’ve enjoyed receiving her cartoons with her humorous look at life in the Sierra Nevada and it always arrives in my inbox just when a need a good laugh. She’s been contributing to Tahoe Weekly since the fall of 2018.

“These cartoons are colorful illustrations with a quirky sense of humor reminiscent of Gary Larson,” Geolyn says.

Purchase a copy of her book on Amazon. You can also sign up for her weekly newsletter at bootsmcfarland.com.

Tim Hauserman

I think Tim is the true master of the Tahoe lifestyle with his light-hearted demeanour, zest for enjoying Tahoe’s great outdoors at every possible moment and ability to hike, snowshoe, paddle or cycle in what I can only image is thousands of miles every year (at least).

I can’t really remember when I met Tim because I’ve known him for so long, but I’m sure we were talking about a great local hike when we decided that we needed to work together. Tim’s work has filled hundreds of pages of Tahoe Weekly through the years with hiking, mountain biking, cycling, paddleboard, canoeing, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing articles.

Tim is currently working on the 4th Edition of “Tahoe Rim Trail: The official guide for hikers, mountain bikers and equestrians,” which is scheduled for release this summer.

He’s also the author of “Monsters in the Woods: Backpacking with Children,” the children’s book “Gertrude’s Tahoe Adventures in Time” and “Cross-Country Skiing in the Sierra Nevada,” which are available on Amazon.

Barbara Keck

I remember vidily when I met Barbara at a local blind wine tasting event many moons ago, where we struck up a conversation and became friends over our shared sense of humor and sarcasm at the fact that the event organizers wrapped the bottle of wines in aluminum foil to mask their identity. Many of the bottles looked like the foil had been pulled out of the recycling bin been used to haphardzardly wrap the bottles by 7-year-olds.

After a good laugh and a few glasses of good wine, Barbara proclaimed “Hey, you need a wine colum.” I agreed immediately, we sealed the deal over a clink of our wine glasses, and Barbara penned our wine column from 2009 until Lou Phillips took over the column in 2014.

Barbara focused her columns on the hundreds of wineries spread across the Sierra Foothills, which resulted in her 2015 guidebook “Wineries of the Sierra Foothills: Risk-Takers & Rule-Breakers,” which was produced by Range of Light Media Group aka Tahoe Weekly.

Keck opens the adventure of the Sierra Foothills to wine lovers, focusing on 10 California counties with more than 280 small, welcoming family-owned wineries that make great wine. The book includes a wine-touring-friendly directory to the 280 wineries and notes their flagship wines and hidden gems.  The 21 “why they did it” winemaker stories finish with original recipes from those families that pair with their wines.

Copies are available at Tahoe House in Tahoe City or by emailing [email protected].

The 2nd edition is in the works now as an Amazon ebook, will include the many new wineries opened in the last three years and an expanded section on the wineries of Butte County. | wineriesofthesierrafoothills.com

Mark McLaughlin

A prolific author, historian and weather guru, Mark has been a fixture at Tahoe Weekly for more than 22 years penning his column on regional weather, history and interesting characters.

He has the tenancity and grit of a hardened newspaper writer, with an unwaivering committement to the facts, while weaving interesting stories and characters through his work for Tahoe Weekly and in his many books, all traits I’ve long admired in his work.

You can purchase any of Mark’s books at thestormking.com, and he’s offering a limited time special: Get a free copy of “Sierra Stories: True Tales of Tahoe, Vol. 1” with the purchase of “SNOWBOUND!” You can also sign up for his “Tahoe Nuggets” blog.

“Sierra Stories: True Tales of Tahoe, Vol. 1” | A dozen exciting, true stories taking you back to the days of stagecoach hold-ups, skiing mailmen, train robberies and the lust of gold fever.

“Sierra Stories: True Tales of Tahoe, Vol. 2” | Fascinating tales about intrepid pioneer women, California’s first feminist, Mark Twain at Lake Tahoe, the Hermit at Emerald Bay and other classics.

“Western Train Adventures: Romance, Robberies & Wrecks” | Action-packed, illustrated adventure stories including the West’s first train heist; grizzled engineers blasting through snow-covered iron rails and lawmen tracking down desperadoes.

“The Donner Party: Weathering the Storm” | Fresh, dramatic and insightful, this book is a unique, weather-based look at this classic Western tale of the struggle for survival. Winner of three awards including Best Non-Fiction Book.

“Longboards to Olympics: A Century of Tahoe Winter Sports” | These inspiring and entertaining stories pay tribute to the character and accomplishments of the early pioneers who fired up Western winter sports, including the 1960 Winter Olympics at Squaw Valley.

“Skiing at Lake Tahoe” | Organized ski racing in America started near Lake Tahoe in the 1860s. Truckee opened the first winter carnival west of the Rockies in 1895 and Tahoe City bid for the 1932 Winter Olympics. Archival and modern photographs illustrate the history of skiing in the Tahoe Sierra.

“SNOWBOUND! Legendary Winters of the Tahoe Sierra” | The Tahoe Sierra endured some of the most severe winter weather in the world. Snowfall measured in feet, avalanches and wind gusts to 200 mph. “SNOWBOUND!” focuses on the Top 10 biggest winters since 1878. Winner of Best Non-Fiction Book Award.

Lisa Michelle

Lisa is a true Renaissance women if I’ve met one – writer, paddleboarder, screenwriter, filmmaker, former rodeo cowgirl and farrier, and all-around avid outdoorswoman. She’s penned articles about local makers and outdoor adventures near and far, including her Tahoe Weekly feature “Solo on Big Blue, A Five-Day Paddle on Lake Tahoe.”

She recently released “Mountain Misery: Calaveras Love Stories,” available on Amazon.

“Told with wisdom accrued like scar tissue, ‘Mountain Misery’ reminds us that love is a motley collection of emotion. Often twisted and tangled,” Lisa says of her book. “Set deep in the back-woods of Calaveras County on the verge of the Sierra Nevada, these stories offer an intimate and authentic look at those who exist in the darkness of failure but courageously continue to seek the light of possibility.”

Her next venture is the contemporary Western thriller, “Calaveras,” which will be released on May 1.

“Deep in the backwoods of Calaveras County accidents happen. For gritty rancher Kate Dunnigan, these deaths are nothing more than good old cowboy justice—until the day that justice hits home. Kate’s bucolic façade is destroyed when her pregnant daughter, Emma Lee, is wanted for murder. On the run from the police, Em is haunted by dirty secrets and Kate will stop at nothing to save her daughter from life in prison, even if it means using herself as bait,” says Michelle of her forthcoming book.  | lisamichelle2020.com, facebook.com/lisamichellestories

Kathryn Reed

An award-winning, pull-no-punches journalist, Kathryn and I have long shared a passion for hard-hitting local news coverage, which is how we met. We connected over our commitment to local news coverage and I started writing news stories for her former online news site, laketahoenews.net.

Since closing the site, Kathryn has become a contributor to Tahoe Weekly and has penned three guidebooks on Tahoe, which she describes as “the ultimate outdoor playground.”

She released “The Dirt Around Lake Tahoe: Must-Do Scenic Hikes” in 2019, with a revised version published earlier this year. She followed that up with “Snowshoeing Around Lake Tahoe: Must-Do Scenic Treks.” Because there are plenty of people who like to do both sports, in March she combined the two into one book: “Lake Tahoe Trails For All Seasons: Must-Do Hiking and Snowshoe Treks.”

All three are available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble, with Tahoe area stores carrying some of her works. Local bookstores are able to order all three. You can also follow her blog at kathrynreed.com.

Mike White

I’ve long admired Mike’s work, a prolific guidebook author covering many trails and adventures in California and Nevada.

I own many of Mike’s guidebooks, but when I received my copy of his book “50 of the best strolls, walks and hikes around Reno” and discovered in the author’s bio that he lived in Reno, my heart starting racing. I’m serious, I got excited, my heart starting pounding and I immediately emailed Tim Hauserman and told him he needed to do a profile on Mike.

I then emailed Mike and asked him if he’d be interested in writing features on local hikes and snowshoe treks for Tahoe Weekly, and he accepted.

He recently released “50 of the Best Strolls, Walks, and Hikes Around Carson City” from the University of Nevada Press. His books are available from Univeristy of Nevada Press at unpress.nevada.edu/books, Wilderness Press at wildernesspress.com and Amazon.

“I have several books coming out this year. Sometime this spring, University of Nevad Press is publishing a companion book to the Reno one, “50 of the Best Strolls, Walks, and Hikes around Carson City,” which like the other one appeals to a broad range of people, as there are short, flat, and paved walks in city parks all the way to full-blown, back-country hikes,” Mike says.
“Coming out later in the year are long-awaited new editions to Wilderness Press books, “Backpacking California, Sierra South, and Sierra North,” which are all backpacking-related guides. Once the travel ban is lifted, I will be engaged in field work for updated versions of 50 Classic Hikes in Nevada” and “Top Trails Northern California’s Redwood Coast,” and for a new book, “Best Backpacking Trips in Washington, Oregon and Idaho.” In addition to these guides, I will be writing a book about some of my outdoor experiences (no working title at this point).”

“Afoot and Afield: Tahoe-Reno” | Features 201 outing in the Tahoe Region for every type of hiker, and many are suited for mountain bikers.

“Backpacking Nevada” | Discover untrammeled wilderness in the most mountainous state in the continental US. Explore the forests of the Carson Range, traverse the granite peaks and cascading creeks of the Santa Rosa-Paradise Peak Wilderness, or watch elk and antelope in the remote Jarbridge Mountains.

“Best Backpacking Trips in California and Nevada” | The guide includes 13 detailed trail descriptions along with information on additional resources, governing agencies, and permits and fees.

“Best Backpacking Trips in Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico” | The second book in a series of detailed guidebooks covering all the best backpacking vacations in the spectacular back-country of the American West.

“50 Classic Hikes In Nevada” | Nevada boasts some of the most diverse and beautiful landscapes in North America and is rich in trails that embrace the state’s scenic, geologic and historic resources and this book features 50 of the best Nevada hikes ranging the state from the Mojave Desert to the Sierra Nevada, from sagebrush basins to the alpine heights of the Ruby Mountains.

“50 of the Best Strolls, Walks, and Hikes Around Carson City” | With more than 300 days of sunshine a year, this capital city’s parks, trails, lakes and soaring peaks provide the perfect attractions for residents and visitors alike.

“50 of the Best Snowshoe Trails Around Tahoe” | This book offers snowshoers of all levels and experience a range of excursions from flat and easy to steep and strenuous.

“50 of the Best Strolls, Walks, and Hikes around Reno” | This guide provides readers the most complete and detailed information for excursions from the Truckee River corridor to the Northern Valleys including lakes, parks, trails and mountains.

“Kings Canyon National Park” | The first comprehensive guide to the trails, campgrounds, outfitters and facilities in the park and its environs with trips to neighboring Giant Sequoia National Monument, Sierra National Forest and the Jennie Lakes and Monarch wilderness areas.

“Lassen Volcanic National Park” | This guide features more than 90 day hikes and backpacking trips to popular destinations for all levels including Lassen Peak, Bumpass Hell, Manzanita Lake, Boiling Springs Lake, Terminal Geyser and Cinder Cone.

“Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks” | With this comprehensive guide, discover the most spectacular wonders in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks and hundreds of miles of trails to high mountain lakes, wildflower-covered meadows, cascading streams, deep forests and craggy peaks.

“Snowshoe Trails of Yosemite” | White describes the area’s best snowshoe trips, all chosen for their great scenery and easy accessibility.

“Trinity Alps and Vicinity” | The most comprehensive hiking guide to the Trinity Alps mountain range, which forms a rugged divide, tucked between the Coast Ranges and the Cascades in a half-million acres of wilderness.

“Top Trails: Lake Tahoe” | Explore 50 of the best trails for hiking and biking in the Tahoe area. The guide features the best hikes including the North Shore’s splendid backcountry, the Lake’s sedate Western side, the picturesque and popular areas on the South Shore, including Desolation Wilderness, and D. L. Bliss and Emerald Bay state parks and the relatively undeveloped Eastern side.

“Top Trails: Northern California’s Redwood Coast” | The definitive guidebook for the magnificent and beautifully mysterious hikers’ paradise of the Redwood Coast.