Snowbound in Tahoe

When I wrote that “we’re heading to Tahoe for the bulk of February, fulfilling a dream we’ve both had to be ‘snowbound’” there was no way I could have known that we’d be there during one of the snowiest Februaries on record, and thus, literally snowbound. And when blizzard after blizzard strategically hit right before each weekend, almost no one could come up from the Bay Area (including some friends who made a valiant effort to visit). We felt as though we had Lake Tahoe entirely to ourselves.

With the snow falling so heavily, there were some days that we didn’t even risk going out, so the jigsaw puzzle we brought, a 3000-piece Ravensburger, was our chief entertainment—aside from refilling the pellet stove and watching the snow accumulate. It was particularly therapeutic for Stephanie, who anxiously awaited a positive response from the grad schools she’d applied to. Her tension was released (and our future was decided) when she received word that she’d been offered a spot at her top choice, Fresno State.

Stephanie almost done with the 3000-piece Animal Stamps jigsaw puzzle by Ravensburger
Finishing the puzzle (while on the phone with her maman)

When we did make it out of our Incline Village cabin, we’d head up to nearby Mt. Rose Meadows to go snowshoeing. After a few outings following well-trodden tracks up to Chickadee Ridge, we felt comfortable breaking our own, an experience that gave us a new appreciation for the joy of snowshoeing. Generally when we go hiking (or snowshoeing, for that matter), we follow the trail as if our life depended on it—so it was a revelation to treat the entire snow-blanketed wilderness as one giant and indescribably beautiful playground. The precious solitude it afforded made us giddy.

Justin and Stephanie snowshoeing down from Picnic Rock at Lake Tahoe, California
Coming down from Picnic Rock
Snowshoe tracks through the trees around Lake Tahoe, California
Snowshoe tracks through the trees
Snowshoe tracks along the lake around Lake Tahoe, California
Snowshoe tracks along the lake
Snowshoe tracks across the meadow around Lake Tahoe, California
Snowshoe tracks across the meadow

Our snowbound experience was so transformational that I found myself musing aloud to Stephanie afterwards about the possibility of relocating to Tahoe once she completes her physical therapy program. It stands to reason that Tahoe would have an above average demand for physical therapists. We’ll see what transpires over the next three years.

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