After touring through San Francisco, we grabbed a couple of close friends and headed to Lake Tahoe. As a child, I had driven past Tahoe on my family’s epic relocation to sunny Southern California, but had never spent much time there. I could not wait to take the trek there and experience Tahoe for all it truly is!

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Once there, we settled into our cabin located at Northstar. I highly recommend staying there, as it is conveniently located to their downhill mountain biking and the rest of Tahoe. It is located in North Lake Tahoe, so that is something to be aware of as well, when planning your next trip. We contacted the area via vrbo, and the place we stayed is similar to the one here: http://www.vrbo.com/433400 It was very spacious and slept about 8-10 people. The price was very reasonable as well, being the off ski season.

We rode downhill for one day only, sadly, but rode a good portion of the trails at Northstar. We geared up at a rental place in the Village at Northstar, then trekked up the gondola to midmountain, where we were sized with bikes. Chad and Zach are pretty tall, well, so am I (5’11) so when we got there, we were hoping for a few extra large bikes. However, all that was available were Large bikes. The guys did okay. We also rode Giant and Scott bikes, which were new to us, especially since most of us were Specialized junkies.

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The trails at Northstar are very silty and rocky. We were spoiled by having traveled to Whistler last year, where the trails are well-packed and the temperatures are very cool. Tahoe, and California in general, were having record breaking heat waves (temps in the 100 in the valley and upper 80s in Tahoe). We sweated, but you don’t really mind when you are downhill mountain biking!

After a day of trekking downhill, we went to the lake. What a way to cool off and rest! The water was freezing, but we all took a dive in, laid out, and planned our next day.

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While on the banks of Lake Tahoe, we decided it would be appropriate to plan a day on the lake. Many calls were made, plans were arranged, and tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. we were going to pick up a boat at Tahoe Keys Marina! What a fun, different plan! In the meantime, we started to catch crayfish that were gathering in the rocks where we were hanging out. It was quickly decided that we would catch four, one for each of us, and then take them quickly back to our condo to boil them to eat!

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The animal lover in me did not want to do any such thing, “let the poor guys live” I wanted to cry. However, I could not resist the adventure of seeing this happen. Not as exciting as lobster, I am sure, but I had yet to see crayfish boiled, so I was down.The recipe was simple…all you had to do was keep the crayfish alive, on ice prefferably and when you arrive home, create a saucepan of boiling water, adding spices as desired. I found this website, where the man is certainly an enthusiast, because the name of his site is even crawfish man! It’s definitely advisable to do a bit of research before you attempt this, as I had no idea that you could not cook them once they were dead. Learn something new everyday! I ended up getting one little bite of the meat, and I was pleasantly surprised at how wonderful they tasted!

I’ve grown up in the south and never until this past weekend had I tasted fresh crawfish. Amazing! I love that life keeps teaching me new things.

Our fist day in Tahoe came to a blissful end, with a game of uker, good wine, and much laugther.

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