User Image

Lake Tahoe Interpretation

CA State Parks provides interpretive programs at Sugar Pine Point, D.L Bliss, and Emerald Bay State Parks as well as virtual field trips. Our collections may help to provoke questions, wonder, and critical thinking before and after your field trip, whether virtual or in person. Students will engage with an interpretive ranger of California State Parks as they stand on the shores of Lake Tahoe at Sugar Pine Point, high up in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Students will make observations and learn about what makes Lake Tahoe such a unique watershed by looking into its formation and natural as well cultural history. They will also think critically about how human activity around the lake can impact water quality and the environment, and vice versa. Finally, your guide can answer questions about what it is like to have a career in parks management. Go to to request a virtual field trip with one of our interpretive rangers!

Lake Tahoe Interpretation's collections


Life in the Snow World

<p>Humans have many ways of coping with winter conditions: we can wear layers, warm ourselves by the fire, stay indoors, and even travel to warmer climates. Do animals and plants have ways of coping with winter conditions too? Indeed, many organisms that live in snowy regions have adapted over time to snowy conditions. Native animals and plants have special adaptations or behavior to help them survive life in the snow world. Photos and questions in this collection will help students to explore these unique adaptations. Simply click the paperclip in each image to see the prompts pertaining to each photo. This collection is ideal for an exploratory lesson.</p>
Lake Tahoe Interpretation

Watersheds, Water Clarity & Human Impact on Lake Tahoe

<p>Lake Tahoe has become a symbol of the controversial balance between preserving and expanding into natural systems. Tahoe’s clarity has also been decreasing since at least 1968; down from 100 feet of visibility to about 70 feet nowadays. Fine particles from urban expansion is one of the main causes, as well as the introduction of invasive species. These photos and questions will help students to understand some of the reasons why Tahoe is becoming murkier. They can provoke relevant ideas about how to slow that loss of clarity down or even reverse it, so that future generations of people and native species can enjoy and rely on this magnificent lake, just as we have done in the past. Simply click the paperclip in each image to see the prompts pertaining to each photo. This collection is ideal for a discussion-based lesson.<br /></p>
Lake Tahoe Interpretation

Sugar Pine Point Heritage (grades 2-5)

<p>Image analysis of these photos can reveal how community life in the Tahoe area has changed over time, and with it so has the environment. This exercise can help students to understand how our lives are different from those who lived here in the past, and how they are similar. Students will also be able to differentiate between things that happened long ago and things that happened recently. This can provoke thought and discussion about how events from the past still have an effect on the landscape today. Simply click the paperclip in each image to see the questions or prompts pertaining to the time period in which the photo was taken.<br /></p>
Lake Tahoe Interpretation