A little family vacation at the lake over the New Year’s weekend revealed record low snowfall and relatively mild temperatures. Though frosty at night, the days were sunny and up in the 50s to 60s. Man-made snow kept Heavenly Valley ski resort open and busy as ever.
I don’t particularly care for the commercialism of the town… but it is a resort after all, and the locals need to make their money during ski season and in the summer boating months. The ice sculptures on the streets and the Christmas lights everywhere gave South Lake Tahoe a festive feel.
Driving to the west along Highway 89 to Emerald Bay State Park affords views of snowy mountainsides and an overlook of beautiful Emerald Bay, where Fannette Island can be seen, on which stand the remains of the Tea House that was built between 1928-1929. It is an annex to a Scandinavian-style stone mansion called Vikingsholm, partially hidden by trees on the South Shore of the lake.