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Coastal cleanup comes to Tahoe

Lake Tahoe’s west and south shores are scheduled to get a scrubbing this Saturday.

More than 100 volunteers have signed up to collect garbage from the area’s waterways and shorelines as part of the California Coastal Cleanup Day.

The annual event aims to clear trash from California’s shorelines. Lake Tahoe, though hundreds of miles from the coast, has its own shoreline and river banks that need attention.



The nonprofit Clean Tahoe program is organizing that effort.

“The turn out has been good. I think they had about 160 to 170 volunteers last year,” said Joann Eisenbrandt, of the Clean Tahoe Program. “I’m guessing we’ll have at least that many this year.”




Volunteers will scour the shoreline at various beaches along South Shore. Some will even scuba dive to Lake Tahoe’s and Fallen Leaf Lake’s depths to raise old tires and anchors that have been left behind.

“We volunteer to go under the water and clean it up,” said Neil Melton, owner of SunSports, a sporting goods and dive shop. “You can’t get what falls off of the docks and boats and what the wind blows into the water. I have been doing this for about seven or eight years. Last year we picked up 83 tires from the bottom of Fallen Leaf Lake and we will be back there this year.”

A total of 740 pounds of trash and 166 pounds of recyclable materials were taken last year from Tahoe’s west and south shores. Eisenbrandt said cigarette butts, plastics and foams were among the most popular picks and a Forest Service sign and an Australian boomerang among the weirdest.

Volunteers can sign up for an existing team or create one of their own.

The League to Save Lake Tahoe is looking for volunteers to fill out its team of trash collectors.

Josh Boldt, the league’s organizer for the beach cleanup event, said joining the league’s team is a good way for individuals to get involved.

“We’ll be cleaning up Pope Beach – it’s the same beach the league cleaned last year,” he said. “It gives people the chance to get out there and clean up the beaches that they love to use.”

Boldt said volunteers will be meeting at Pope Beach, on State Route 89, at 9 a.m. Saturday. The League to Save Lake Tahoe can be reached at (530) 541-5388. For information on the Coastal Cleanup Day call the Clean Tahoe Program at (530) 544-4210.

n Mary Thompson can be reached at mthompson@tahoe.com or (530) 541-3880, ext. 208

What: Coastal Cleanup Day

Where: South and west shores of Lake Tahoe

When: 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday

Information: Clean Tahoe Program, 544-4210


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