Truckee River Running!

By Tim Hauserman

During the winter months the Truckee River between Tahoe City and Squaw Valley takes a nap in our collective consciousness. Hidden behind snow banks, we only catch a glimpse of it now and then on our way along the corridor from Tahoe City to Alpine Meadows, Squaw Valley or Truckee. But on this April Fool’s Day I took a stroll along the river. The mid afternoon temperatures were approaching 60 degrees, water releases from the Tahoe City Dam were running a brisk 1000 cubic feet per second, and the river once again has sprung to life.

The bike trail along the Truckee River has been plowed by the Tahoe City Public Utility District and is available for walking and bike riding. Given the cold temperatures at night and melting occurring during the day, there may still be ice in places, so use the trail with caution.

We walked several miles of the trail from River Ranch towards Tahoe City and passed a good number of happy hikers enjoying the fine April day. The river now is a frothy mix of white water and deep crystal clear water, bordered by still healthy snow banks on both sides.

In our two hours walking along the bank of the river we saw geese not in a hurry to get out of our way, a trio of kayakers happily making their way downstream, a dog chasing snowball after snowball into the river, and a guy going for a swim. Yes, that’s right, we did see someone fully immerse themselves in the mid 40 degree water. Turned out his drone had ended up in the river, and clearly he really, really wanted to get it back.

While the spring skiing is super fine right now, it was nice to see that our wet and wild March, is transitioning into a warm and springy April. I even saw a few crocuses pop up their bright yellow and purple heads in Tahoe City today. Tomorrow, I will be out skiing early to take advantage of the spring time corn, and maybe in the afternoon dusting off my bike for it’s first ride in a few months. Ah springtime, love this time of year.