Sunrise, Sunset

By Tim Hauserman

Watching the bright oranges and purples of a Lake Tahoe sunset is often a sublime and life affirming experience. But sunsets are for most of us just a lucky coincidence. It is not unusual to catch a great one while driving home from work or on your way to dinner.  A Tahoe sunrise, however, is something you have to work for. It requires getting your nice warm posterior outside into the early morning chill to catch the first rays of light, without any guarantee that you will find a glorious vision of color.

Several times over the last few weeks while getting ready for work, I happened to glance outside and see a sky ablaze in bright red, and thought, I should have been down on the shoreline. Then the morning came, when I got the initiative and quickly donned a jacket and was out the door as soon as I saw the hint of orange above the trees. By the time I made the five minute walk to Tahoe Park Beach, unfortunately,  the orange was gone and the sky was a simple, dull gray, with just a few wisps of clouds. Apparently sunsets don’t have a pause button while you are attempting to get yourself to the viewing spot. The good news is that it didn’t matter.

As I stood above the shore I listened to the sound of the waves softly breaking, and gazed across the lake at the snowcapped peaks of Desolation Wilderness. While it certainly is a highlight to see that ooh and ahh of dazzling color, it’s also rewarding to just have the chance to begin your day by spending 15 minutes doing nothing but looking at Lake Tahoe.

As the sun slowly got ready to make it’s appearance over Snow Valley Peak, the summit of Mt. Tallac caught the first rays of the sun. Then the light slowly progressed down the mountain side, eventually striking the tippy tops of the trees above me just before warming my face and heart.  And another day of beauty and opportunity had begun at Lake Tahoe.