The End of Summer

Colin and I had planned on going to San Diego this year (cancelled twice). Evidently that just wasn’t in the cards for us so we planned a last minute camping trip before I had to go back to school (I’m already stressed).

I knew it was important to stay close to home so after doing some research, I found some open campsites in the Tahoe National Forest. We reserved two campsites, one at Sardine Lake for one night and one at Lakes Basin for two. This post will be about our time at Sardine Lake.

I want to give a huge shout out to my Aunt Sharon for letting us borrow her kayaks. The trip would have been fun regardless but the kayaks allowed us to explore this area in a different way. 

We got to Sardine Lake campground around noon on Thursday. We set up our campsite and drove just a little less than a mile up the road to the Lower Sardine Lake. We unloaded the kayaks and got on the water. 

The lake is beautiful. It was so calm and peaceful with a amazing views of mountains all around. It is a great lake for fishing. We saw a bald eagle while kayaking which was super cool because that was my first time ever seeing one in person! We also got a glimpse of the waterfall.

First time out on Lower Sardine Lake

Once we made a lap around the lake, we headed back to our campsite and went on a hike to the upper lake. From the campsite it is about a mile and half trek. You walk along the ridge with a view of the lower lake. The trail itself is very rocky but a gradual incline. Near the top, you come across a little creek and the beginning of  the waterfall. 

Quick stop to enjoy the creek before reaching the Upper Lake

Once you reach the Upper Lake, it is just as remarkable with an even better view of the mountain range on the other side. You can further hike up the rocks where you have the lower lake to your left and the upper lake to your right. We hiked to the highest point, just the two of us up there. 

Highest Point with View of Lower Sardine Lake

That night we had dinner and of course s’mores, played cards, and went to sleep pretty early. The next morning we woke up and decided to do the same hike as the day before but catch the sun rise. I’m so glad we woke up in time. It was breathtaking. And again, we were the only ones up there. I love how we now have that memory together. We explored a little more up there. When we got back, we had breakfast, I journaled (I’ll include a little excerpt here), packed up our campsite, kayaked the lake one last time, and then headed over to our next campsite. 

Thursday August 20, 2020 8:43am I am currently at Sardine Lake Campground, and surprising to the name, this place is beautiful. We decided to do the hike again to catch the sunrise. We were hustlin, we got there so quickly and the sunrise was INCREDIBLE! MAGNIFICENT! Watching the sunrise with my love. These are the moments that mean the most to me. Can’t put them into words. 

beautiful smoky sunrise

Sardine Lake is only an hour and a half away. It is a great new place to explore that isn’t far at all. It’s important to note swimming is not a primary activity at these lakes since it is a pristine fishing lake and there really aren’t any beaches. But other lakes around would be great for swimming. It could easily be just a day trip. And is not crowded especially compared to Tahoe. Another thing I want to add is that there is no service once you get to the lake. It is a perfect place to unplug. This is exactly what I needed and I think it made the trip more fun.

Stayed tuned for my next post on getting Colin and I lost :)! hehe

thanks for being my adventure buddy .

The Mountains are Calling

This summer is flying by which is surprising under these unusual circumstances. I think I’ve been able to keep my sanity by making time to get outside and go on adventures. Every day spent in the mountains is a good day.

When I make a drive up to Tahoe, I want it to be a whole day thing. Chimney beach is one of my favorite beaches at the lake. I was looking up trails in the area and found Chimney Beach to Marlette Lake.

The start of a challenging but well worth it hike.

This is a six mile out and back trail with a steep incline. It is not easy despite what AllTrails says. Always read the reviews!! I was prepared to not be able to feel my legs by the end of it. It is so worth it though, you get incredible views of Lake Tahoe peaking through the trees as you make your way up. And I had never been to Marlette Lake before. It was very peaceful. 

Got to break in my new hiking shoes and backpack from Sierra Trading Post! My new favorite store!

The trail overall has a good mix of sun and shade and was not busy at all. I still recommend you go early though to beat the heat and find parking. I went on a Wednesday, started at about 9:30am, a few spots were left in the lot, and I only saw five people on the trail. 

The parking lot at the start of this trailhead is only .2 miles away from the parking lot that actually leads you down to the beach. To get to Chimney Beach is about a .5 mile hike down, very easy. There is in fact a chimney on the beach which is cool, but I like to find my own secluded spot. There are plenty of spots that you can make your own, socially distanced from others. 

Floating all my worries away

The water is so clear and blue. It’s like a dream. Going for a swim after a strenuous almost seven mile hike is the best feeling. Always bring plenty of water and snacks. I brought along my journal, a good book, and of course my speaker. Please give me song suggestions because I haven’t listened to anything else besides the new Taylor Swift album for the past two weeks…

Let me know if you check out this hike or this beach! And please remember to always pick up your trash and to leave the trail/beach just as you found it, or better! Hope you’re all enjoying summer and making the most of it. 

Spotted: a wild Logan in her natural habitat, thanks for responding to a late night instagram story, such a fun day!!