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Kayaking in the crystal-clear waters of Lake Tahoe

California

3 California Mountain Resorts with Beautiful Alpine Lakes

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  • States:
    California

No matter the season, admire the stunning scenery in resort areas surrounding alpine lakes in California.

California is a state that’s as well-known for its natural beauty and outdoor recreation as it is for its laid-back Pacific Coast lifestyle, vibrant cities and pop culture attractions. In Big Bear Lake, Lake Tahoe and Mammoth Lakes, you’ll find world-class winter skiing, welcoming towns and comfortable and luxurious resorts. In the summer, boat, fish and swim in the lakes, and go hiking or mountain biking among the peaks.

Big Bear Lake

In the San Bernardino Mountains, only a two-hour drive from Los Angeles, discover Big Bear Lake, an alpine destination 2,050 meters (6,759 feet) above sea level. Go skiing in the winter and get a fabulous view by taking the Scenic Sky Chair to the top of Snow Summit. In the summer, mountain bike the summit and hike the Cougar Crest Trail and Bear Mountain. Towering peaks circle the shimmering lake, a beautiful sight for people boating and fishing. After spending the day outside, enjoy fine dining and luxury accommodations at bed-and-breakfasts and lakefront lodges.

The San Bernardino Mountains, a two-hour drive from Los Angeles

The San Bernardino Mountains, a two-hour drive from Los Angeles
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Lake Tahoe

Straddling the border of California and Nevada, the topaz-colored Lake Tahoe is a treasure in the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Famous writer Mark Twain once said, “The air up there in the clouds is very pure and fine, bracing and delicious. And why shouldn't it be? It is the same the angels breathe.” Looking out at the lake from Emerald Bay State Park, it's easy to understand why Twain was captivated. During winter, go skiing at the world-class mountain resort. Summer activities include hiking, scenic cruises on the lake, paddleboarding, rowing or taking a scenic drive around the lake. Year-round, explore unique towns along the shoreline.

Skiing on the well-groomed slopes during winter at Lake Tahoe

Skiing on the well-groomed slopes during winter at Lake Tahoe
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Mammoth Lakes

This leisurely mountain town is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Enjoy skiing on the iconic winter slopes of Mammoth Mountain. During the summer festival season, try locally brewed beers, listen to music and relax on the terrace of a hillside hotel. Go fly-fishing, hiking and mountain biking through the mountains, stopping often to admire flowers or enjoy natural hot springs. Explore the resorts at nearby Lake June. Getting to Mammoth Lakes is easy, especially during the ski season, with daily flights to San Francisco and Los Angeles airports. Yosemite, another Sierra Nevada gem, is within driving distance.

Taking a scenic gondola ride to explore Mammoth Mountain

Taking a scenic gondola ride to explore Mammoth Mountain
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