A few weeks ago on a whim we decided to go to one of our favorite, favorite places – Lake Tahoe. I would live there if it wasn’t for all that obnoxious snow. I’d even consider pretending I don’t hate snow for at least one winter. Ok, so that’s a big lie. After last winter, I never want to see snow again unless it’s in a movie.
We are really trying to make an effort not to drive until we are exhausted, cranky, and ready to take in vodka via IV, so we wanted to stop halfwayish. We settled on Likely Place Golf & RV Resort in Likely, California. We drove into a tiny, tiny town, turned left, and drove by a lot of fields full of cows. And then we found an amazing place to stay the night. We don’t golf, so I couldn’t tell you a thing about the course, but the RV sites were great! The sites are level, long, and most have full-hookups. The roads and sites are pea gravel with nice grass area between them. We liked it so much that we stayed there again a few days later on our way back to Bend. We’ve also recommended it to several friends in case they ever need a great place to stay on their way south. Weather permitting we may end up there again next month.
We had two very important stops to make in Carson City – Costco and In & Out Burger. When we got to Costco, we unhooked the Jeep, left the motorhome in the parking lot, and headed a short distance away to to shove double-doubles in our mouths. I’m so glad I wore stretchy pants that day! We went back and ran into Costco for Kirkland vodka (so cheap at 13.99 for a giant bottle – we bought 3!) and rubber gloves. Weird combo I know, but sometimes you need vodka and rubber gloves. I don’t hook up that sewer hose with bare hands, because ewwwww!
We stayed at the Tahoe Valley Campground for 4 nights. I’d only booked 3, but we decided to add another night at the last minute. The sites are tight, but for the first couple of nights we only had neighbors on the driver’s side, so it was like having a huge site.
That first night the garbage dumpster lid slamming woke me up at around midnight. I have pretty bad insomnia, so I’m used to being up at weird hours. I pulled up the kindle app on my phone and started reading hoping that I would go right back to sleep. It might have worked if the dumpster lid wouldn’t have kept banging. I was so irritated at the butthead that were taking out garbage so late. It wasn’t buttheads. I pushed up the shade at the head of the bed and found myself watching a huge bear playing in the trash. A bear! In the campground! I woke my husband and we were up for the next couple of hours watching the bear. It knocked one dumpster completely over. Blitzen was sitting on the bed purring, and he suddenly notice the bear, and went silent and low. He knows bears aren’t toys. I have no idea what time we finally went to sleep, but it was a long, long night, and we were pretty useless the next day. We explored the west side of the lake and South Lake Tahoe/Stateline area for a few hours, and had a yummy lunch at Stateline Brewery, but it was a struggle, because we were exhausted. At least we weren’t the campground workers who had to pick up all the trash the bear dragged out.
The next night was much of the same. Around midnight the bear showed up. One thing that really blew me away was the lack of bear aware campers. People left out their BBQs, bins of food, and coolers. There is bear info all over the campground, yet people would put their food a foot from their tent. Maybe they even had food IN their tents. I found that rather frightening. I didn’t make it long that night, because of the lack of sleep from the first night. My husband kept waking me up to talk about bears, but I think I just growled at him and went back to sleep.
We went to Sand Harbor, found a spot on the beach and settle in for a few hours. The water was perfect! It was clear and much warmer than our last trip to Tahoe a few years ago. They even have a little cafe that serves food and cocktails, so we took a beer break partway through our relaxation. By early afternoon Sand Harbor was crowded with families, and we were ready to do something else. We drove up to Incline Village and then back to South Lake Tahoe. When we got back to the campground, we were getting neighbors. The campground is set up sort of zigzaggy, so the people that pulled up behind us were between us and our new neighbors on the awning side. Both sets up new neighbors were really nice, which was a bonus, because Blitzen (harnessed and leashed) invited himself into the fifth wheel of the couple behind us. Their door was open and he walked up the steps like he owned the place. We met another couple that were on their second trip in their Class C Sprinter. They stopped by the ask a few questions about towing with one, since they could see that we tow the Jeep.
We had a bear-free night, moved to a different site (we spontaneously decided to stay an extra day and had to move at the site across from our first one), and spent the next afternoon just hanging out at one of the beaches on the south end of the lake. It was the day to relax. We needed it. We left Blitzen for about 6 hours. That was his longest stretch of being in the motorhome by himself. He had plenty of food and water and we left the AC set at 80 just in case. He was fine. Cats are so much easier than dogs! Our new site was a little more spacious and it backed to the walkway to the playground. Blitzen was out on his leash and was a hit among little girls. When we were finally able to put him back in the motorhome, we walked to the campground store for ice cream, peeked in at the showing of Ernest Goes to Camp, met a beautiful pet wolf belonging to the people two sites down, and walked all over the campground.
The next day we had to leave. Picture sad faces, because that’s what we had. Except for the tight sites, the campground was so much fun. They have a pool, a huge playground (the swings hold adults if you must know), a trail to the river, laundry facilities, a store, and even movies every night in a large tent. We didn’t hit up the pizza place that was across the street, but it’s there if you want pizza. It’s just a couple of blocks from a shopping area with a couple of restaurants, a grocery store, gas station, and a Kmart. Rates are high (upper 50’s), but worth it to us. When we left we made another stop at Costco, because hello! Cheap liquor! Yay Nevada! One more stop in Likely and we were home.
GoMadNomad has a much more detailed description of Likely here.