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Winter traffic impacts Lake Tahoe’s clarity
Each winter storm in Tahoe brings with it more snow, more skiers and snowboarders, and more traffic. Annually some 24 million visitors in 10 million cars come to recreate and enjoy our one Lake Tahoe. Not only does this create traffic jams, but it also damages the very Lake that everyone is here to enjoy.
Cars crush winter traction material and deteriorate our roads creating fine sediment pollution that washes directly into our Lake, diminishing its famed clarity. That’s why it is as important as ever to leave your car behind whenever possible (and you can avoid the parking and traffic hassles).
This winter, we encourage you to take action by riding up to the mountains via carpool or ski shuttle. Visit our winter transit web page for up-to-date ways to get to and around Tahoe.
As the oldest and largest environmental advocacy nonprofit in the Tahoe Basin, the League to Save Lake Tahoe is focused on addressing the amount of cars on the road because it directly impacts Lake Tahoe’s clarity.
That’s why the League is working to find innovative transportation solutions that not only benefit our Lake but also improve travel experiences in the Tahoe Basin.
"Our efforts focus on ensuring that Lake Tahoe remains resilient in the face of this threat. It is clear that the time to act is now. 'Keep Tahoe Blue' is more than a sticker, it’s a commitment to maintaining Tahoe’s natural beauty," explained Darcie Goodman Collins, CEO of the League.
That commitment can be seen in our recent work to test on-the-ground pilot programs. For instance, we worked with Lime to bring bike share to South Lake in 2017, making our community the first dockless bike sharing in California. In 2018, bike-and-scooter ride sharing returned to the South Shore and in just five months removed 180,000 vehicle miles traveled from our clogged roads.
Last summer, we also launched a three month microtransit shuttle service in the most crowded tourist area on the South Shore. These convenient mini-buses allowed riders to travel locally using a smartphone app. Public/private partnerships and technology-driven solutions like these highlight the ways we can reduce the impacts of traffic on Lake Tahoe’s clarity and our experience getting to and around the Lake.
L to R: Core Volunteer Tara Dobyns and Chief Strategy Officer of the League Jesse Patterson at Tahoe Forest Stewardship Day.
Volunteer Highlight: Tara Dobyns
"I have been lucky enough to travel to over 60 countries, and Lake Tahoe is a gem of our planet. This is paradise. This is why I volunteer with Keep Tahoe Blue," said Tara Dobyns, a long-time volunteer and member.

Dobyns says she has been to 49 states, 47 state capitals, lived outside the city limits of South Lake Tahoe for 32 years and inside the city for 41. She likes numbers and results and is proud to call Tahoe her home.

She is originally from New York City and remembers first catching a glimpse of Lake Tahoe from an airplane window. She thought then, 'That's it. I’m home.' It took her a few moves (from New York to Newport Beach, from Newport Beach to San Francisco, and from San Francisco to Tahoe) to get here, but once she arrived, she stayed. She and her late husband have been members of the League since the 70s.

She lives a mere 153 steps from the Lake and considers it part of her backyard and her responsibility to protect. She has been a Core Volunteer with the League since 2015 and is about to hit 100 volunteer hours due to her efforts picking up litter on beaches, restoring habitat, monitoring pipes that flow into the Lake and reporting invasive plants.

Dobyns is trained as an Eyes on the Lake volunteer. Eyes on the Lake is the League's volunteer citizen science program to help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive plants in Lake Tahoe and surrounding waters. Volunteers like Dobyns identify and report on aquatic invasive plants they find in and around Tahoe, helping stop the spread of weeds in the Lake.

One of her favorite things to do is to kayak on Lake Tahoe while looking for invasive weeds like the Eurasian watermilfoil. "It is a win-win-win situation," she explained. Adding, "I am getting to help on the Lake, I'm helping out the League, and I maintain my good mental and physical health."

Get started volunteering with the League and learn more about our Core Volunteer program online.
Lake Tahoe news
A 2½-hour drive from South Lake Tahoe to Placerville? Traffic backing up on US 50
January 21, Tahoe Daily Tribune
With the three-day weekend drawing toward a close, traffic is backing up on U.S. 50 through Meyers toward the Y in South Lake Tahoe.
Heavy snow closes I-80 in the Sierra, wreaks havoc on Tahoe travel
January 6, San Francisco Chronicle
When Katja Nelson traveled to Lake Tahoe this weekend, she expected a white wedding, not whiteout conditions.
January 29, Tahoe Chamber
Marilee takes her love for Lake Tahoe to work everyday as the Community Engagement Manager at the League to Save Lake Tahoe. She and her team are responsible for coordinating hundreds of volunteers who picked up 1,473 pounds of trash from Lake Tahoe's shoreline during last year’s Keep Tahoe Red, White and Blue Beach Cleanup event.
Pipe Keepers Training
Wednesday, February 13 | 2- 4 pm
North Tahoe Event Center, Kings Beach, CA

2nd Annual YPE Keeps Tahoe Blue - a happy hour fundraiser
Thursday, February 21 | 6 - 9 pm
Press Club, San Francisco, CA

Wine glass gift set
The month of love is upon us! Why not celebrate with a nice glass of wine? We offer single wine glasses or receive a free wine key with the purchase of a set of four wine glasses. Purchase in our store or online . Share your love for Keep Tahoe Blue with each purchase!
League to Save Lake Tahoe | 530.541.5388 |
Clarity photo by Dylan Silver,