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Covering 50,000 square miles, the massive 沙士达山 Cascade region is one of the most expansive and wildly beautiful areas in the Golden State. Natural wonders like glassy lakes, verdant forests, and snow-capped peaks are only part of the fun. California’s northeasterly corner is filled with unexpected hidden gems, from sustainable breweries to sock-hop-style diners imported from 2,600英里之外. Explore it all on this road trip from 太浩城 to 山沙士达山.
Kick off your trip at Lake Tahoe
太浩城,坐落在 Lake Tahoe’s north shore and the head of the 特拉基河, is the perfect jumping off spot for your 沙士达山 Cascade road trip. As the largest alpine lake in North America, Lake Tahoe will give you a taste of the natural grandeur to come. Before you leave town, make sure to dip your toes in at 公共海滩 and take a short trek along the 太浩Rim小道, which extends an astonishing 170 miles point-to-point.
Time travel in 特拉基
Trade crystal-clear waters for evergreen forests as you follow the 特拉基河 all the way to town. 特拉基, a railroad community-turned-skiing hotspot, still retains its Old Western charm. 停止在 老监狱博物馆 for a tour of the longest-continuously run jail in California which once held notorious troublemakers like Baby Face Nelson and Ma Spinelli. For lunch, hop a few decades forward at 在赛道上的Jax. This authentic 1940s diner was shipped all the way from Philadelphia by an enterprising restaurateur. The Americana-meets-Cali fare includes chorizo breakfast burritos and southern-fried steak and eggs.
Say so long to 特拉基 and veer west on 80号州际公路, stopping for a quick splash at 印度的弹簧, where the south fork of the Yuba River forms natural swimming holes. Towel off and continue west to Sierra Nevada Brewery in 奇科. Long before craft beer was cool, Sierra Nevada was growing its own hops for pitch-perfect pale ale. 后 a tour of the estate, belly up for a tasting. Stay for dinner at the 酒吧, where wood-fired pizza dough is made from fresh brewer’s yeast, before tucking into your four-poster bed at 酒店詹姆斯.
Paddle out at 湖Almanor
The next morning, enjoy two hours of wide-open mountain driving along State Route 32. You’ll notice the Douglas firs grow increasingly taller as you make your way north to 湖Almanor. Along the lake’s southern tip, you’ll spot signs for 湖Almanor Kayak. Choose your vessel—standup paddle boards, as well as single and tandem kayaks are available for rent—before enjoying the pristine water and views of snow-capped 拉森峰.
Explore hidden caverns
Continue toward your trip’s North Star, the massive 山沙士达山, which looms like a beacon. On the way, don’t miss Lake 沙士达山 Caverns. This National Natural Landmark in Lakehead is a must-see. Getting there via catamaran, switchback bus ride, and vista-filled short hike is half the fun, but the caverns are the real showstopper. Explore the 250-million-year-old 石灰岩洞穴 filled with stalagmites, 中一根, and soda straws as you wind your way through tight tunnels and well-lit rooms.
Less than an hour later, you’ll reach your final stop. From the crystal shops that line the city of Mt. 沙士达山‘s main drag to the beckoning trails, this town is all about the mystical draw of its 14,180-foot-tall mountain. Featuring an on-property spa, golf course, and restaurant, 山沙士达山 Resort is the perfect spot to enjoy some pampering after a few days on the road. Check in before driving toward the mountain itself, which remains an active volcano to this day. In summer months, head to the Mt. 沙士达山 Wilderness to hike along wildflower-dotted fields with mind-bending vistas. In winter, enjoy the 80 inches of annual snowfall, which makes for plenty of powder days.