Catch the Wind: Sailing at Lake Tahoe


Lake Tahoe is already beginning to celebrate sailing season. The Tahoe Windjammers kicked things off with their Clam Chowder party on March 22, but if you missed that you are more than welcome to visit and cruise around on one of the various sailboats that sail the mountain lake.

One of the most beautiful sailboats on the lake is the Sierra Cloud catamaran which is owned by the Hyatt, but run by Action Water Sports on the North Shore. Their daily two-hour cruises cost $65 for adults and $35 for children. Renting the entire boat for a private party of around 40 is $2,500. The coveted sunset tours on Friday and Saturday evenings include live music by Patrick Major and costs $70 per person and $2,700 for a private charter. The Sierra Cloud sails along the northern shores of the lake while you lounge on the over-the-water nets or on the cushioned seats on the deck and all tours include premium beer, white wine, soda, water and light hors d' oeuvres. Reservations for tours can be made at the beach shack at the Hyatt in Incline Village.

The 55-foot long Woodwind II catamaran sails from Zephyr Cove on the east shore five times a day from April 15 to October 15 and can carry up to 50 passengers. A day cruise costs $39 for adults, $35 for seniors and $15 for children, the Happy Hour Cruise leaves at 5:30 p.m. and costs $34 for adults, $30 for seniors and $15 for children and the Sunset Champagne Cruise departs at around sunset and costs $51 for adults, $47 for seniors, and $15 for children. The Woodwind has a full bar in the main salon, a sun deck, private booths, two underwater observation windows, two restrooms and a full sound system.

If you are interested learning a bit about sailing, book a two-hour cruise on the Tahoe Cruz. The Cruz sails from April to October from the Tahoe City Marina on the North Shore and can accommodate up to 25 people. The captain of the boat will allow passengers to take a turn at steering this 50-foot monohull in Lake Tahoe's blue waters. The Daily Cruises are between $50-60 for adults, and $30-40 for children depending on the time, and the Sunset Cruise is $60 for both adults and children. Each cruise includes beer, wine and appetizers. Private charters are also available for $800 and $1,200 depending on the season and time of the cruise.

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