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Lake Tahoe: Restrictions ease, but some limitations still in place


By Gabby Dodd

Phase two of  Gov. Steve Sisolak’s reopening plan has taken effect, and with it, new relaxed guidelines including gatherings up to 50 people while continuing to follow social distancing measures, according to a press release from the governor. Bar areas that both serve and do not serve food, among other businesses, will be allowed to reopen at 50 percent capacity with strict guidelines.

But as restrictions ease, travel into the Tahoe area still has its limitations. It will be a different experience for visitors compared to years past, according to Andy Chapman, President and CEO of the Incline Village Crystal Bay Visitors Bureau.

The bureau is currently working on a visitor readiness guide in conjunction with the California side of Tahoe’s north shore, which includes the responsibilities visitors will have when coming to Lake Tahoe. The guide should be available “within the next week or so,” according to Chapman.

“We are looking forward to the return of our visitors and second home owners and even residents getting out and about,” Chapman said. “But we are doing it slowly, we aren’t really actively marketing to outside of the region yet. We are still going slow in that realm as businesses get their feet under them.”

Crowds are returning to Lake Tahoe, but restrictions on gathering size and some beaches are still in place. Image: Gabby Dodd

Some of the tips in the guide will encourage people to stay away from crowded areas like trailheads and parking lots and to continue practicing social distancing.

While beaches are open on the Nevada side, those that are run by the Incline Village General Improvement District are only allowing IVGID card and punch-pass holders into its beaches currently. This includes Ski, Incline, and Burnt Cedar beaches. Facilities at the beaches, such as Burnt Cedar pool, BBQ, bocce court and play structures are still closed according to IVGID’s website.

“IVGID will be proceeding with caution as they reopen facilities and community services,” Paul Klein, spokesperson for IVGID said in an email. “Residents will be given priority on everything from beach access to tennis courts to golf tee times.”

Information from the Nevada State Parks website explains that the Tahoe East Shore Trail between Memorial Point and Sand Harbor is closed. The Memorial Point parking lot is also closed. However, beaches and rock areas accessible on the path from Tunnel Creek up to Memorial Point are open.

For those looking to launch boats, the State Parks website also explains that Tahoe watercraft inspection stations are currently closed. Only boats that already have a Lake Tahoe inspection seal can launch.

While South Lake Tahoe has also started to ease restrictions, rescinding the local ban on nonessential travel into Tahoe, the California town is still under a state ban for nonessential travel according to an El Dorado County press release on May 27.

“Because the State ban on nonessential travel supersedes the County’s, there is no material change in what people should do in regards to visiting Lake Tahoe,” said Public Health Officer, Dr. Nancy Williams in the release. “I cannot emphasize this enough: people should not come to Lake Tahoe unless they have an essential purpose for doing so.”

For more information about re-openings and current restrictions, visit:

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