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Have you read: Tahoe’s past and present explored in photos

When referring to Lake Tahoe in his book, “Roughing It,” Mark Twain wrote, “I thought it must surely be the fairest picture the whole world affords.”

The following books give the reader/viewer a glimpse into Lake Tahoe’s scenic beauty. So, while waiting for the last winter snow to melt, how about taking a look at some of these photographic essays.

“Hearts of Light: Impressions of Lake Tahoe: Verse and Visions,” photographs by John Thomas Ravizé and poems by Linde C. Ravizé is a beautiful book. Stunning, full-page color photographs celebrate the natural elements of the Lake Tahoe Basin. From the stillness of winter to gorgeous red sunsets, the photos and accompanying poems celebrate Tahoe in all seasons.



“The Tahoe Rim Trail: Exploring the Jewel,” text and photography by Mark Vollmer and additional photography by Scott Sady describes the Rim Trail in pictures and text. The photographs in the book reveal the magnificence of the trail and its setting.

The accompanying narrative describes the trail in clear expressive detail.



“Lake Tahoe: A Photo Essay of the Lake Tahoe Region” by Larry Prosor captures the many moods of the lake. From the stillness of clear water reflecting skylight to a skier “catching air” off a cornice, this book reflects a love affair with the Tahoe outdoors. Divided into four chapters based on the seasons, this book is for people who either want to be outdoors, or for people who are armchair travelers.

In a different vein, the “South Lake Tahoe Historic Photo Album,” presented by the Tahoe Daily Tribune, is a black-and-white historical retrospective of Lake Tahoe. The photos in this book capture bits of time and give the viewer some idea of what Tahoe was like to past generations. The chapters are arranged topically, e.g.: Native Americans, Transportation and Recreation. A highly readable, fact- filled text accompanies each chapter and the photographs have clear captions. This book is great for persons interested in the lake’s rich history.

For a comparison of what Lake Tahoe was and how it has changed, look at “Stopping Time: A Rephotographic Survey of Lake Tahoe” by Peter Goin. Similar to the “South Lake Tahoe Historic Photo Album,” this book looks at the lake’s history with a twist. In “before and after” photographs, this books looks at Tahoe scenes and shows how they have changed over time. The text and photograph captions are well written and factual.

Although the book, “Above Tahoe and Reno,” is not exclusively about Tahoe, the photographs by Robert Cameron and text by Warren Lerude with additional historical photographs offer some interesting aerial views of the lake. For example, there is a beautiful shot taken above Glenbrook and an interesting photograph that shows a full view of Marlette Lake. Interesting facts and descriptive details contained in the text enliven the photographs.

These books and other materials on Lake Tahoe are at the Zephyr Cove Branch Library, 233 Warrior Way in Zephyr Cove. For more information call the library at (775) 588-6411.

– Dan Doyle is a senior library technician with the Douglas County Public Library.


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