by Tim Hauserman
During the crazy busy days of August and Labor Day, my local swimming spot on Lake Tahoe was often so crowded it was hard to find space on the pier to lie down. Earlier this month, I walked down to the beach for a swim on a bright and sunny late morning, with the lake calm, and the water still warm, and took a dip. I was the only one on the pier. Yep, it was time for the September Slows…Locals summer… August without the crowds…And Tahoe folks were just besides themselves with excitement.
Well, but then again, September can be a fickle little bugger. It can be warm, sunny and crowd-less. Or as I was reminded a few days after my swim, it can snow. On September 20th it snowed all morning at lake level, quarter size flakes gently covering the lawn with a few inches of snow.
Two days later, I was enjoying a hike along Emerald Bay, there was a cool breeze and a few sprinkles, but that couldn’t dampen my spirits as a hike along the Rubicon Trail is always a gorgeous way to spend a few hours.
The next day, I was mountain biking the hardened, deep brown trails of Tahoe XC above Tahoe City. There was not a hint of dust on the trails, but I did roll over a few remaining patches of snow. Sure it was a bit nippy, but the bright blue sky and even brighter blue lake shimmered in the sun.
This week, it is supposed to rise back up into the 70s and perhaps a few more days of swimming in Lake Tahoe are still in the offing. Or perhaps it will snow again.
The moral of the story when it comes to September and October at Lake Tahoe is that you need to carpe diem. If the weather is warm and lovely, get out there for a hike, bike ride or paddle on the lake. If it is stormy or snowy, bundle up, light a fire and enjoy a hot chocolate…and then get out there, just choose your location wisely. Let nature be your guide.