Best Ways To Experience The Sierra

November 15, 2010 2:45 PM

One of the best things about living in or visiting Sacramento is its proximity to the Sierra. A 600-mile mountain range on the border of California and Nevada, the Sierra is world-renowned for its skiing, recreation and state parks. Locations include Lake Tahoe, Yosemite Valley and Mono Lake. So, if you’re looking to get away for a while, the Sierra offers a wide range of activities and events. Here are a few of the best ways to experience the Sierra. – Steve Hartsoe
yosemite falls664088 Best Ways To Experience The Sierra

(credit: David McNew /Newsmakers)

Yosemite National Park

Though a little bit of drive at 176 miles from Sacramento, no mention of the Sierra Nevada mountain range would be complete without Yosemite National Park. At nearly 750,000 acres, Yosemite is home to a myriad of wildlife, plants and trees and boasts 19 waterfalls, the largest of which is Yosemite Falls. At more than 2,000 feet, it is the tallest waterfall in North America. Spot a black bear or photograph beautiful glaciers while on your visit. Hike one of the park’s 800 miles of trails or scale Bridal Veil Falls. There really is no end to the wonderful sights and things to do while visiting Yosemite. Accommodations range from the rustic to the luxurious with everything from tent camping to the grand Ahwahnee Hotel and all points in between.

lake tahoe1615580 Best Ways To Experience The Sierra

(credit: Elsa Hasch/Allsport)

Lake Tahoe

For a person who loves the outdoors, there’s nothing like Lake Tahoe. Featuring seven world-class ski resorts, including Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows and Sugar Bowl, the sports enthusiast will not be disappointed. But, the fun doesn’t end when the snow melts. Summer activities abound at lakefront beaches, parks and golf courses. Lake Tahoe is divided between the North Shore and the South Shore, with both sides splitting space between California and Nevada. This popular destination features an abundance of casinos, resort towns and lodging. Want a quaint bed and breakfast? Try the Cottage Inn at Lake Tahoe. Looking for something with a little more nightlife? How about the Tahoe Biltmore Lodge and Casino in Crystal Bay?

Mono Lake

Interested in nature and conservation? Then perhaps you’d enjoy a trip to Mono Lake. Located 218 miles from Sacramento, Mono Lake offers camping and educational and recreational activities to please nearly everyone. The lake itself is 70 square miles and close to volcanoes, ghost towns and an abundance of streams teeming with trout. Check out birds on the Eastern Sierra Bird Trail or enjoy a sunset tour of Tufa Grove. Take in a seminar on hydrology or photography or grab your pole and catch some fish. If it’s outdoors, you’ll likely find it at Mono Lake.