Weekend Window: Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe is a prime fall destination for visitors.

ByABC News via via logo

Oct. 7, 2007 — -- Nestled in the Sierra Mountains on the California-Nevada border, Lake Tahoe is one of the country's most popular lakes.

The lake is 72 miles around and 1645 feet deep, which makes it the second deepest lake in North America. Tahoe also holds the distinction as the largest alpine lake in North America.

In fact, if you dispersed all the water in Lake Tahoe, it would cover the entire state of California in about 14 inches of water. Also, the lake is so large, that each day, enough water evaporates off its surface that, if harnessed, would meet the daily needs of a city as large as Los Angeles.

Sand Harbor State Park is part of Lake Tahoe-Nevada State Park.

"What's striking about Sand Harbor is the white sands, compared to the very, very blue water," said Dale Conner, of Lake Tahoe-Nevada State Park. "We have great big boulders and rocks everywhere that just make this beautiful, and it has a great backdrop to it with the mountains behind it."

But the lake is also known as the jewel of the Sierras because of its emerald blue color.

"Because we are in such a beautiful area and such a high elevation, and the air up here is so clean ... that the sky really reflects well on the water," said Mark Kimbrough of the Tahoe Rim Trail Association. "So, it gives it that really strong blue color that people seem to enjoy."

And the lake's color isn't its only famous part. Tahoe is known for its skiing. Yet, autumn showcases a different view.

"It's a great time of year to come to Lake Tahoe in September and October," Conner said. "The leaves are starting to change colors, and there are a lot of great hiking opportunities — the Tahoe Rim Trail, which goes all the way around the lake, is very popular."

Visitors also enjoy kayaking, Conner added. "They also go boating and jet skiing. And people just like to come to the beach, and just sit here and soak it all in."

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