The Fourth of July holiday period signifies the busiest time of year in the Lake Tahoe Basin.
The U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit is instituting the following annual alcohol bans:
· Nevada Beach on July 4, from 6am until midnight.
· Zephyr Cove Resort and Zephyr Shoals (former Dreyfus Estate) from June 30 through July 8. This prohibition has been extended for public health and safety and resource protection.
· Chamber’s Landing Beach from July 1 through July 6.
To ensure compliance, these areas will be patrolled by law enforcement personnel from the Forest Service, state and local law enforcement, and private security staff.
Possession of fireworks of any kind, including firecrackers and sparklers, is illegal in the Lake Tahoe Basin. Campfires and charcoal fires are only allowed in metal fire rings or stand-up grills provided at developed recreation sites. Campfires, bonfires and portable charcoal grills are not permitted on National Forest beaches, in Desolation Wilderness, Meiss Country or along Genoa Peak Road and the Tahoe Rim Trail. Gas or propane stoves are allowed in all areas with a free, valid California Campfire Permit, available at any Forest Service office.
Expect extremely crowded conditions on local roads, highways, parking lots and around restrooms and portable toilets.
Due to the influx of visitors, mobile device networks may be overwhelmed and mobile phones and other devices may not work in some areas. Develop an alternate plan to contact family and friends and have an emergency plan in place in case you cannot call for help.
Expect Lake Tahoe beaches to be much narrower than in previous years. Some beaches with vegetation or rocky shoreline may be inaccessible.
Consider public transportation, or walk, carpool, or bicycle to avoid limited parking in crowded recreation areas, heavy traffic and delays after the firework displays. At developed recreation sites, such as Kiva, Tallac Historic Site, Taylor Creek Visitor Center, Echo Lake and Angora Lake resorts parking is allowed only in designated parking spaces inside the parking lots, not along the roadway.
Day-use parking fees for July 4 at Pope, Baldwin, and Nevada beaches will be $30 and at Zephyr Cove Beach $40 to cover increased security and facility maintenance costs of the holiday.
Dogs are not allowed on National Forest designated swim beaches including Nevada, Pope, Baldwin, Meeks Bay, and William Kent. Leashed pets are welcome at Kiva picnic area from the Valhalla Boathouse/Pier to Tallac Point and Echo Lakes on the South Shore; Zephyr Shoals, Hidden and Chimney beaches on the East Shore; Coon Street Beach (at the boat launch) in King’s Beach; Kaspian and 64 acres beaches in Tahoe City.
Trash cans will become full, so plan ahead and keep in mind that Forest Service staff will be handing out trash bags at many recreation sites. Become part of the solution by packing out your own garbage.