Lake Tahoe, California audio tour: Below the Surface: a walking tour at Lake Tahoe

Below the Surface: a walking tour at Lake Tahoe

Walking Tour

60 mins

About the Tour

Humans have been interacting with Lake Tahoe for over 10,000 years, and for most of that it was the center of the Washoe Tribe's territory. In the last 150 years, this place has seen immense change. This walking tour will guide you along the northeastern part of the lake from Incline Village to Sand Harbor as you hear about everything from the area’s deforestation, to art and conservation efforts.

We’ll touch on the natural forces that formed the lake and surrounding mountains, and some of the flora and fauna that you’ll find here. I’ll tell you about the various origins of the place names around the lake, and the surprising battle over what to name Tahoe. On this tour, you’ll also hear about:

• Natural history and the role of both glaciers and volcanoes
• Logging and massive deforestation in the 1800s
• Tahoe’s significance to the native Washoe Tribe
• Efforts to maintain the lake’s clarity
• How humans have historically interacted with this environment, and how that is changing

The Tahoe East Shore Trail was completed in 2019 and has quickly become a favorite among visitors and locals alike. It hugs the northeast corner of the lake and offers incredible views and beach access by foot or bike –all ADA compliant and easy to travel along. Keep an eye out on the walk back to Incline, because ideally these stories will help you see this beautiful lake in a new light.

Please note: an additional $2 entrance fee needs to be paid at the Sand Harbor park.
Before embarking on a journey to our beloved region, please take the Traveler Responsibility Pledge here:

Tour Producer


Fil Corbitt

I'm a radio producer and audio artist based outside Reno, Nevada. I make a podcast called The Wind and have been working in radio since 2007. Find me at

Major Landmarks

  • Incline Village

  • Hidden Beach

  • Emerald Cove

  • Sand Harbor

  • Lake Tahoe

Directions to Starting Point

The tour begins at the Tahoe East Shore Trail north trailhead in Incline Village. If you're driving, there is paid parking at the trailhead, right in front of the Tunnel Creek Station Cafe.

Show Directions
Buying for somebody else?
If you’d like to give VoiceMap tours as a gift, you have two options: choose the tours yourself, or buy a voucher redeemable against any of VoiceMap’s tours in 167 cities worldwide.
Buy a gift voucher
VoiceMap tours for large groups
If you’d like to provide groups of guests with access to a VoiceMap tour, you can buy a specific number of copies for a particular event or obtain a license for more regular use.
Find out more


Places to stop along the way

If you're hungry or thirsty, I recommend stopping at Tunnel Creek Station Cafe before you leave. It's at the northern trailhead, and offers snacks, coffee and other beverages.
There are restrooms along the path and multiple points of Lake access. If you do leave the path to sit by the lake (highly recommended) make sure to get back on the path at the same point so the GPS will function properly.

There are no other businesses along the way, so make sure to bring water and a snack if you want to picnic by the lake. Just make sure to pack out everything you bring in.

Best time of day

There really is no bad time to see Lake Tahoe though the trail may be crowded on weekends and holidays.
If you plan on walking back, you will want to leave at least 2 hours before sunset.


Tahoe's weather can be unpredictable, so make sure you have layers in the colder months and sunblock in the warmer months. This path is popular for both walkers and cyclists, so keep right except when passing to keep the flow of traffic safe and easy.

And if you want to enter Sand Harbor State Park at the end of the tour, you'll need 2 dollars (cash or card, there is a kiosk at the entrance.)


Great info! We will definitely Che m out more tours on the app.

Posted by Melissa , 3 months ago
Preview mode limited to first 3 locations.
Below the Surface: a walking tour at Lake Tahoe