Archive | July, 2020

Discovering Caples Lake – July, 2020

17 Jul

We have been kayaking at Round Hill beach on the Nevada side of Lake Tahoe for a couple of years.  Recently, Jerri decided we should branch out as Round Hill is getting too crowded and we know just about every rock on our kayaking routes.

There are many lakes around Lake Tahoe and in the Sierras and we did a bit of research on how far we’d have to carry the kayaks, where to park, and time to get to our new playground.  She wanted to try Caples Lake and we headed out to the Caples Resort.  As we neared the resort, we noticed a public boat launch sign and turned in there.  What a treasure!  Only $5 for day use;  easy parking and a small distance to carry our gear;  several little beaches where we can socially isolate.  It was quiet and very few people.  This was the best!  Please remember to double click on the photos to enlarge them.

Yes, the beach is rocky, but we have chairs to sit on and we love the solitude.  We can hear water lapping on the shore and the birds in the area.

There are many trees and even a few redwoods.

We are even treated to a few flowers still in bloom.  Here is a small lupine.

There was a wind blowing when we arrived but it was not as cold as the winds generally are at Lake Tahoe.  We were still cautious with the kayaks and didn’t go out in the middle of the lake, but we were able to paddle about a mile without turning around and that was on just one side of the lake.  We were excited to spot what we originally thought was a bald eagle, but it turned out to be an osprey in a dead tree.  It’s not as big as a bald eagle, but it’s still a large bird.  We even got to see it fly and try for a fish, their primary food.  Photo: Audubon field guide

Caples is much smaller than Tahoe and not as deep and I think that is why even though its elevation is higher, it was warmer.  We were comfortable to wade and even play with the Boogie boards.

We knew the weather forecast called for winds and possible thunderstorms and were on the watch for thunderheads building around the mountain peaks.  This is the only rabbit we saw that day. 🙂

We watched this “donut” build and when the wind built up speed and the donut blocked out the sun in a relatively short time, we quickly packed up and left.  One does not mess around with lightning in the mountains and on lakes.

A sweet picture of my grand-niece watching the lake.

Dean was waiting for me when I got home and wanted to relax together a bit before I took a shower.

Jerri and I were so excited about Caples Lake that we went two days in a row.  So much fun and it’s worth the extra few miles to drive to get to this treasure of the Sierra Nevada.

P.S.  Don’t tell folks about how cool this lake is.  We love its solitude and beauty unmarred by crowds.

What I’ve Been Doing for the Past 10 Or So Days

10 Jul

My niece, Jolee, spent many days on her hands and knees moving rocks, laying down weed prevention materials and then replacing the rocks.  A backbreaking, fatiguing job to say the least.  As I took a tour of my own back yard, I decided there was too much ugly Bermuda type grass around my trees and I could fix that.  Jolee was my inspiration, plus I wanted to see if I could do it.  (Be sure to click on the images if you wish to enlarge them)

I moved these rocks front the front yard and placed them around the trees when I first moved to Minden in 2013.  Obviously, I didn’t do a very good job taking care of the grass.  This is a before shot.   The area beyond the fence is open space that was originally supposed to be a gold course.  Now it’s full of sagebrush and other plants that provide shelter and some food for many critters and birds.  Just this side of the fence are the many iris that I planted last fall.  I hope, eventually, they will provide a green/colorful vista along the fence.

It seemed like it took forever to move the rocks and prepare the soil for the weed guard material.  It also involved replacing some of the drip system because some of it was at least 20 years old.  It was such a dirty, sweaty job that I usually took off my clothes in the laundry room and then went for a shower.  Yes, I was drinking a lot of Gatorade to stay hydrated.

This little 3” long creature charged at me while I was trying to move his rock home.  Luckily, I saw him moving out of the corner of my eye and didn’t get stung.  Touch up (to highlight him to be easier to see) courtesy of the Matt Rivers Touch-up & Redo Service.

Along the way, I decided to not return the small rocks around the trees as I thought it would look neater.  So, I moved quite a few via wheelbarrow to another section of the yard.  This is just the beginning.

After placing the weed guard material around the trees, I moved some large rocks from another area of the yard to form a circle around the tree.  Then red “bark” was put around the trees.  Jerri helped me do some of this.  Still, it’s a long tedious job.  This is a “finished” tree.  Piles of smallish rocks are still to be moved.  I broke my wheelbarrow just as I dumped my last load this morning.  RATS!  I need to go out and repair it before Jerri comes over to help me move more rocks tomorrow.  No rest for the wicked as my mom used to say.