Emerald Bay Boat Campground

Things to Do, Travel Tips — By christinanellemann on August 3, 2010 at 9:00 am

Another hidden Lake Tahoe gem is tucked away in the most visited area of the lake: Emerald Bay. On the west side of the bay is a small campground that can only be reached by boat or by the small footpath from Vikingsholm.

The Emerald Bay Boat Camp only has about 30 camp sites, but is extremely popular during the summer. Campers can reach the site by boating, canoeing or kayaking from other parts of the lake. With each campsite reserved comes a boat buoy. There is also a dock where campers can load and unload their gear and take up to their campsite in a wheelbarrow. Several of the sites are right on the water, one with a private beach, while some are up the hillside with views of the water and the surrounding mountains. Each site comes with a bear box for storing food, a picnic table, several flat areas for tents, a firepit and a BBQ grill.

During the day, the popular spot is center to the boating, kayaking and hiking public, but when the sun goes down, the camping area is for the campers only. Evening kayak trips out to Fannette Island and watching the lit up Tahoe Queen and M.S. Dixie II paddle into the bay is part of the after dark festivities. Campers can also take the Rubicon trail to Vikingsholm or to Rubicon Point at the edge of the bay.

A few weekends ago, my husband and I took our kayaks (and towed a cooler of food) to our campsite. We kayaked about three miles from D.L. Bliss State Park to the campground. It took us about 2 hours, but was a great way to see some hidden parts of Tahoe.


Reservations for the campground can be made at Reserve America.

Photo courtesy of [jbarreiro]

Tags: backpack, bay, boat, buoy, camp, camping, emerald, kayak, tahoe


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  1. Camping in Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe | Lake Tahoe | NileGuide - September 15, 2011