Recreation

 Graphic: Enhanced Fire Restrictions, Wood and Charcoal Fires Prohibited.

Click on the photos below for more info.

Kayaker paddles on Lake Tahoe. Fallen Leaf Campground sign. The Crystal Range sits behind Mt. Tallac. National Forest Gate Nevada Beach on Lake Tahoe's East Shore The Honeymoon Cabin at Tallac Historic Site sits alongside the south shore of Lake Tahoe. Kokanee salmon school during fall spawning. Fire Restriction sign. Kid jumping off boat into Lake Tahoe American Black Bear

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Recreation Conditions Report

 Area Name Status Area Conditions
Angora Lakes Resort Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Baldwin Beach Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Bayview Trailhead Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Camp Richardson Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Camp Richardson Corral Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Desolation Wilderness Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Eagle Falls Trailhead Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Echo Chalet Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Echo Lakes Trailhead Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Fallen Leaf Campground Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Genoa Peak Road 14N32 Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Glen Alpine Trailhead Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Granite Chief Wilderness Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
High Meadows Trail 18E33A Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Kaspian Campground Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Kaspian Day Use Area Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Kiva Picnic Area Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
McKinney/Rubicon Trailhead Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Meeks Bay Campground Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Meeks Bay Day Use Area Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Meeks Bay Resort Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Meeks Bay Trailhead Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Meiss Country Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Mt. Tallac Trailhead Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Nevada Beach Campground and Day Use Pavilion Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Noonchester 14N34A Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Pope Beach Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Prey Meadows/Skunk Harbor Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Rim Trail North Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Rim Trail South Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Roundhill Pines Resort Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Rubicon Trail 14N34 Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Sand Pit 12N28 Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Sawmill Pond 12N30 Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Stateline Lookout Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Tallac Historic Site Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Taylor Creek Visitor Center Open to Visitor Parking area and grounds open. Limited visitor services begin mid-June. No permits will be issued at the visitor center summer 2021. Desolation Wilderness permits can be reserved online at www.recreation.gov. No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Twin Peaks Trail 12N30 Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
Valhalla Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit
William Kent Campground Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
William Kent Day Use Area Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Zephyr Cove Day Use Area Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Zephyr Cove Resort & Campground Open to Visitor Open Year Round No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK
Zephyr Cove Stables Open to Visitor No wood or charcoal fires, propane appliances OK with permit

Spotlights

Tallac Historic Site

A century ago, what is now the Tallac Historic Site held the "Grandest Resort in the World" and was the summer retreat for three of San Francisco Bay Area's socially elite families. Today, the remains of the resort and the restored estates attract thousands of visitors annually to recapture this bygone and significant era in Tahoe's history. Adjacent to Lake Tahoe, Kiva Picnic Area and the Taylor Creek Visitor Center, the Tallac Historic Site is operated in partnership with the Tahoe Heritage Foundation.

The Tallac Historic Site is located approximately three miles northwest of the City of South Lake Tahoe on the lake side of Highway 89. The entrance is on Heritage Way across from Fallen Leaf Lake Road. The site offers something for everyone and many paths and most buildings are accessible. The Tallac site is open Memorial Day weekend through September. Though the buildings are closed during the winter, the grounds remain open year-round and the site serves as a popular cross-country skiing and snowshoeing destination. Please note: Campfires and portable charcoal grills are not allowed.

The Tahoe Heritage Foundation supports a variety of preservation, restoration and education projects and programs in the Lake Tahoe Basin. It was founded in 1996 to enable a public/private partnership with the USDA Forest Service that manages restoration projects and interpretive activities at the Tallac Historic Site.

During the summer, you may join a Tallac Site interpreter for heritage programs, guided walks, building tours, demonstrations, behind the scenes peeks, and more. A changing schedule of activities with times, places, and a detailed description is available at the Baldwin Museum or online at the Tahoe Heritage Foundation's website at http://www.tahoeheritage.org/events-and-programs-2/tallac-historic-site/.

Volunteering at the Tallac Site

Are you interested in becoming a volunteer at the Tallac Historic Site? There are many ways to help. Some volunteers take part in the continued preservation, restoration, and maintenance of structures, grounds, artifacts and machinery. Others prefer providing tours and assisting in a variety of museum related activities including staffing or behind the scenes projects. We have opportunities for local residents as well as those able to travel with their own RV. Volunteers can sign-up through the Tahoe Heritage Foundation. For more information about our volunteer program, please contact Jude Markward by email at info@tahoeheritage.org.  

Meiss Country

Meiss Country is located south of the Lake Tahoe Basin and offers a complete wilderness-like experience with beautiful forest meadows, picturesque mountain lakes, and wonderful scenic vistas.

  • Campfires and charcoal grills are not allowed due to the wildfire risk they pose to our communities, wildlife and forests.

  • Gas stoves are allowed with a valid California Campfire Permit obtainable online at https://www.readyforwildfire.org/permits/campfire-permit/.

  • Please report illegal campfires that are still burning, smoldering or have hot coals to 911 immediately.

  • Illegal rock fire rings that are cold to the touch may be reported using the Contact Us form ahttps://go.usa.gov/xwYjT

Valhalla

The Heller Estate, located east of the Pope and Baldwin estates, is known as Valhalla, which means Viking heaven. Valhalla is located on National Forest land and is operated under a special use permit by Valhalla Tahoe (Tahoe Tallac Association). The main building is available for meetings, weddings and other event rentals and offers daily art exhibits. Valhalla also offers a beautifully renovated boathouse, now a community theatre, and twin guest cabins that offer fine arts and crafts for sale. All three structures support the associations annual Arts & Music Festival.  For a schedule of events or information on rentals call (530) 541-4975 or visit www.valhallatahoe.com. Valhalla is open mid-April through mid-December, weather permitting. Though the buildings are closed during the winter, the grounds remain open year-round and the site serves as a popular cross-country skiing and snowshoeing destination. Please note: Campfires and portable charcoal grills are not allowed on the beach. 

Valhalla Tahoe was formed in 1979 (as the Tahoe Tallac Association) as a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization with the goal of assisting the Forest Service in restoring the three estates on the Tallac Historic Site and developing the site as a historic center while sponsoring and producing the Valhalla Arts & Music Festival held annually on the Heller Estate. The site is listed on the National Registry of Historic Sites.

Desolation Wilderness

Welcome to Desolation Wilderness, 63,960 acres of sub-alpine and alpine forest, granite peaks, and glacially-formed valleys and lakes.  It is located west of Lake Tahoe and north of Highway 50 in El Dorado County. Desolation Wilderness is jointly administered by both the Eldorado National Forest and Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit.  For specific information on fees, permits, trail information, and the zone quota, follow this link:  Read More

  • Desolation Wilderness permits available online - Permits are available through the National Recreation Reservation Service (NRRS) at recreation.gov. Reserved permits can be printed at home or picked up at a Forest Service office within 14 days prior to date of entry. A signed copy of your permit must be in your possession.
  • Desolation Wilderness Volunteer Program - visit www.desowv.org for more information.

Camp Shelly

Camp Shelly is located in South Lake Tahoe on highway 89 conveniently between Fallen Leaf Lake and Emerald Bay. The campground is centrally located in the whispering pines, allowing visitors to take advantage of both the natural wonders of the Lake Tahoe basin as well as the indoor attractions of a major tourist destination. Amenities include hot showers and a metal fire pit and grill in every campsite. Most sites can accommodate tent trailers and campers and some can accommodate motorhomes up to 24 feet in length. Lake Tahoe and the Glen Alpine and Mt. Tallac trailheads are all within hiking distance. Nearby are the Taylor Creek Visitor Center and Vikingsholm.

Taylor Creek Visitor Center

The Taylor Creek Visitor Center, operated in partnership with the Great Basin Institute, is located on the south shore of beautiful Lake Tahoe approximately three miles north of the City of South Lake Tahoe. The visitor center serves as a hub where four fascinating self-guided trails begin. In 2021, the visitor center will be open with limited services Fri-Sun from 10-4 p.m. beginning in mid-June. Though the buildings are closed during the winter, the grounds remain open year-round and the site serves as a popular cross-country skiing and snowshoeing destination. Please note: Wood and charcoal fires are not allowed. 

The Great Basin Institute is an interdisciplinary field studies organization that promotes environmental research, education, and conservation throughout the West. Founded in 1998 at the University of Nevada, the Institute’s mission is to advance applied research and ecological literacy through community engagement and agency partnerships to support national parks, forests, open spaces and public lands. The Great Basin Institute became the interpretive association for Taylor Creek Visitor Center in 2018.

If you're interested in volunteering at the visitor center this summer, contact our Public Services Staff Officer, Daniel Cressy by email at daniel.cressy@usda.gov.

Areas & Activities

Highlights

Color graphic of the Travel Management logo featuring a drawing of a trail next to stream and trees.

Travel Management: A Program for Motor Vehicle Route Designation


Buy it where you burn it!

Be aware that firewood can harbor insects and diseases that threaten valuable forest resources. Transporting firewood can move these pests to new locations.

 



https://www.fs.usda.gov/recmain/ltbmu/recreation