Wednesday, July 9, 2014

fish family vacation - lake tahoe

If you had to narrow down all the moments in your life to your top ten favorite memories, could you do it? This thought crossed my mind as I was lounging on the deck of a dinner boat on Lake Tahoe with my Fish family, laughing over Mama Fish’s grandbaby fever and waiting patiently for the fireworks show to start. 

My 23 years on this world have been brief, but beautiful - and the most joyful, eye-opening moments in my life could not be counted on ten fingers. However, I’d like to think this vacation would contend for a top spot. Indulge me for a moment as I relive the trip in words and pictures.

Day 1

After a long morning of traveling, we arrived at the Squaw Valley resort exhausted and hungry. We lounged at the pool for a few with David {Daniel’s brother} and Sam {David’s wife} before getting ready for our evening meal. It’s a running joke in the Fish family that Fish family vacations are high on activities and low on food. The first time I traveled with them to San Francisco, I lost 4 lbs - on vacation! This time Mama Fish made sure we had time to eat {and eat well we did}.

We had a lovely dinner at Jake’s on the Lake, where the food was spectacular and the view was stunning. 

Day 2

We started out the day with a kayaking trip on the lake. It was a leisurely trip filled with fun, historical stories about the lake and its many former residents. I didn’t want my phone to get wet, so we don’t have any pictures of this adventure.

After a quick bite to eat at a BBQ joint on the lake, we rented a couple of jet skis and spent an hour having fun on the lake. The water was clear and cool, and I’ve never seen that color of blue in nature before. 

We came back to the resort to crash before going to dinner at Plumpjack’s Cafe at The Village {where the Olympians stayed during the 1960 Winter Olympics}. The food was interesting {quail, anyone?}, but not near as delicious as the fro-yo we followed it up with. The rest of the evening we explored the village and crashed a movie-viewing in the square.

Day 3

Our 4th of July started off with a steep hike up the mountain. At points, I was literally using all fours to climb up the trail. However, the view at the top was breath-taking {literally and figuratively} as we looked out over the mountain ranges and even caught a glimpse of the lake.

When we finally returned to the resort, we got ready to go back to The Village to take the huge tram up to the top of the mountain. At the top we had a nice lunch with an amazing view and even explored the Olympic museum. We were pretty exhausted from our hike, and came back to grab a nap before getting ready for our evening on the dinner boat.

The dinner boat was by far my favorite part of the trip. Lake Tahoe is even more magical from the middle than from the coast - if you can believe it. We watched the sun set while we feasted on prime rib, then finished our evening watching the firework show from the deck. You can watch a video on my Instagram - because these pictures could never compare.

Day 4

Saturday morning we decided we wanted to catch a glimpse of Emerald Bay - reportedly the 3rd most photographed location in the United States. We should have known better to visit a tourist hot spot on a holiday weekend, but we tried anyway. After an hour drive and thirty minutes of searching for a parking spot, we found a {semi-legal} spot, and walked a ways to the viewing area. We planned to hike down to the bottom, but it was lunch time, and some of us {me} weren’t feeling so well. 

We stopped for a quick bite to eat before heading back to the resort. At that point, I think I had a fever, because I crashed for three hours while the others enjoyed the poolside. I woke up feeling well enough for dinner - which was a good thing because it was my favorite meal of the week.

Dinner was “Farm to Tahoe” filled with local, organic produce and meat with each course paired with a local wine. First course was the best heirloom tomatoes I’ve ever eaten. Second course was a surprisingly delicious pork belly. Third course was sea bass cooked to perfection. And fourth course was a chocolate creme brûlée with raspberry powder. Delicious!  

The four “kids” robed up for a dip in the hot tub to end our crazy, wonderful vacation under a star-lit California sky.

We’re already planning to go back. Have you ever been to Lake Tahoe? Was it in the summer or winter?

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