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California > Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit
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Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit

Desolation Wilderness- Because of its beauty and accessibility Desolation Wilderness is per acre, the most heavily used wilderness area in the country. Desolation Wilderness is 12.5 miles long and 8 miles and is accessed by 15 named and numbered trailheads under a quota system.
Mt. Rose Wilderness Area- The Mt. Rose Wilderness area offers visitor chances to experience many recreational activities within its 28,121 acres. These include hiking and horesback riding.
Pacific Crest Trail- From desert to glacier-flanked mountain, meadow to forest, the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) symbolizes everything there is to love - and protect - in the Western United States.

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Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit
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General Information

Description - Located in the Sierra Nevada mountains, Lake Tahoe's beautiful, sapphire-blue waters straddle the California-Nevada state line. The lake's elevation averages 6,225 ft, and surrounding peaks reach heights of up to 10,880 ft. World-renowned for its clear water, Lake Tahoe has been designated an Outstanding Natural Resources Water, thus gaining protective status under federal regulation. The lake occupies about one-third of the basin in which it resides, and almost 77 percent of the land surrounding it is administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Service.

Attractions - Majestic scenery and diverse recreation opportunities draw millions of visitors to the Lake Tahoe Basin annually. Changing colors throughout the year afford a brilliant backdrop to the many available activities. The Basin is home to a rich diversity of plants and animals that can be viewed during guided walks, at interpretive sites, and on the many forest trails.

Some of the more popular attractions within the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit include Angora Lookout, Mount Tallac, Emerald Bay, Eagle Falls, Vikingsholm, Ehrman Mansion, Stateline Lookout and Logan Shoals Vista.

Recreation - Seasonal activities include skiing, snowshoeing, camping, fishing, hiking, music and cultural
festivals, art and craft exhibits, and many other sports and events.

Climate - The High Sierra generally experiences mild to warm, dry summers and cool to cold winters, with heavy snowfall. Sunshine is normally abundant, even during the winter months. Weather can change rapidly during all seasons of the year. Elevation plays a major role in temperature and precipitation. This precipitation falls mainly from October through April. At higher elevations, it comes mostly in the form of snow. A snowpack from 5-10 feet or more is usually present from December to May at elevations above 6,500 feet. Winter temperatures below zero and summer temperatures above 100 degrees indicate the normal seasonal spread. Clouds can build up during the summer to produce spectacular thunderstorm activity. It is wise to pack for any season with clothing that can be "layered", ready to peel off or add on as the thermometer dictates. Always include some kind of rain gear.

Location - The Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit surrounds Lake Tahoe in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, along the California-Nevada border. An office and visitor center are located in South Lake Tahoe.

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More Information

Contact Information:
Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, 870 Emerald Bay Road, Suite 1 , South Lake Tahoe, CA, 96150, Phone: 530-573-2674

Additional Information:
California Lakes and Reservoirs - The lakes and reservoirs described here range from huge reservoirs to small mountain lakes. The lakes are often part of large recreation areas, National Forests or State Parks.
High Sierra Region -
Lake Tahoe Region - Lake Tahoe lies in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, straddling the California-Nevada state line. It is one of the most popular outdoor recreation areas in the United States, offering almost endless recreation opportunities.
Reno-Tahoe Region - This incredible area offers the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Lake Tahoe's crystalline waters, rolling forests of pine and fir, snow-covered mountains, an ancient sea turned into a desert lake, historic mining towns and much more.

Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit - Official Agency Website
Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit - Official agency website
Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit - Official agency Website


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