It is always fun to get out and explore; especially in a new place. I have visited Lake Tahoe, CA in the winter for some epic snowboarding in the past but last week was my first summer trip to this spectacular spot. The two adventure highlights of the trip were mountain biking the Tahoe Flume Trail and SUPing on the crystal clear lake.
The Tahoe Flume Trail is a 17 mile or so mix of single track and fire roads that pack in breathtaking views, a calf-burning uphill, speedy downhills, and adrenaline inducing corners on thousand-foot cliffs.
The day started at tranquil Spooner Pond where I did a quick two-mile warm up around the pond and then linked up with the Flume Trail. There is no honey-coating what the start of the trail entailed: it was four miles of climbing with a little more than 1,000 feet of elevation gain - just straight up and up and up.
I stopped about two miles into the climb to catch my breath and snapped this quick selfie. It was a gorgeous, hot day and although the hill seemed never-ending, the reward at the top was worth it.
From the top of the first peak the ride got fun. An intense downhill brought me to a smaller lake (Marlette Lake) which was picturesque and serene. After biking a few miles along its shores I got to a dam and the start of the Flume Trail. From then on it is fast paced cruising at 8,000 feet on single track that varies from three feet wide to just a foot or so in some places. On the right of the trail was usually cliff or woods going up and on the left was a sheer drop for about a thousand feet. There was nothing technical about this trail but it was super fun and full of ridiculous views of the lake and mountains.
For miles the trail hugged the cliff, letting me traverse the mountain and try not to ride off the side while taking in the views. The trail eventually peeled away from the edge of the mountain and, after a few warning signs regarding speed, variable terrain, and death, I arrived at a four or five mile downhill which was, needless to say - awesome. The downhill dumped me back at the bike shop that I started at and the adventure was over.