Distance: 12 miles Time: 4 hours Type: There and back
Lake Tahoe is probably northern California's most famous lake. In the summer months, holiday-makers descend in their hordes to enjoy the crystal blue water and sand-strewn beaches while in the winter the area hosts multitudes of skiers, snowboarders and other snow sports enthusiasts. There is a good reason why Tahoe is so popular: it's the largest alpine lake in North America, the second deepest, and is known its colour and mountain surrounds.
The Rubicon Trail is a lakeside trail which gets you up and close to that very blue water and connects two of Tahoe’s most picturesque state parks: D.L. Bliss and Emerald Bay. It's an easy route with only a few small hills and perfect for a morning or post-lunch walk.
The trail-head is located not far off Emerald Bay Road in the south-west corner of the lake, at D.L.Bliss State Park. Off season, when we were visiting, the road which continues down to the lake shore is shut so we parked the car just off the main road and walked down, which added another half mile or so. You can join the lake shore at various points: wherever you join, turn south to head toward Emerald Bay.
You can obviously go as far as you want but it is worth going at least as far as the beach at Emerald Bay. Although this is a popular spot, you have nice views here out to Fannette Island in the Bay, which has an abandoned structure on it, and there is a beach with benches for a pit-stop before your return walk.
For map of the walk go here: