Is living in a tourist destination really that bad? |

Is living in a tourist destination really that bad?

Sun File PhotoA common sight in the winter and#8212; a tourist wearing ski boots inside the grocery store.

LAKE TAHOE and#8212; Anyone who spends more than a week in Lake Tahoe Basin has undoubtedly heard the term and#8220;gaperand#8221; dropped into casual conversation.

Whatever the aspect of meaning the word conjures for certain locals, it highlights the frustrations some residents have toward living in a heavily frequented tourist destination. And with Lake Tahoe planning for a new type of tourist and#8212; leaders are discussing a future where destination and drive-in tourists play a more vital role and#8212; the idea of more tourists generates diverse reactions from the community.

and#8220;I hate it when I am driving on Lakeside and some guy slows down to about 15 mph so he can look at the lake,and#8221; said South Lake Tahoe resident Richard Strauss. and#8220;I’ve been late to work because of slow driving.and#8221;

Many locals interviewed complained principally about traffic, particularly during the holidays.

and#8220;On the big holidays, I don’t want to drive anywhere because I know the traffic will be bad,and#8221; said South Lake Tahoe resident Jerry McDonough. and#8220;But, I adjust and try to do my shopping beforehand.and#8221;

Incline Village resident Sally Miller expressed frustrations with the lack of parking available outside Raley’s, and traffic jams resulting from the light in by the casinos in Crystal Bay.

and#8220;The traffic light in Crystal Bay is constantly holding up traffic so two people can walk across the street,and#8221; she said.

Traffic can be pretty bad at times, too, near the and#8220;Wyeand#8221; intersection in Tahoe City.

and#8220;Sometimes traffic is backed up all the way to Lake Forest Road,and#8221; said Tahoe City resident Tony Hetrick. Lake Forest is about two miles east of Tahoe City.

A handful of residents take issue with noise emitting from vacation rentals or trash being left out for too long on neighborhood streets by visitors.

and#8220;When I lived closer to Tahoe City we had a vacation rental right next to us,and#8221; said Tahoe City resident Katie Souza. and#8220;Some people would be out on the deck, partying until midnight and being generally inconsiderate.and#8221;

However, some residents said tourists are not the source of noise and that permanent neighbors can be just as inconsiderate.

and#8220;My neighbor is always revving his truck engine at seven in the morning,and#8221; Strauss said.

Others understand the tourist-centric nature of the region and realize others want to enjoy the lake and its picturesque surroundings.

and#8220;Most of time it’s good people that come here and I enjoy meeting different people from different places,and#8221; said McDonough. and#8220;Of course it gets too busy occasionally, but I just try to stay off the roads at the high impact times.and#8221;

Added Kings Beach resident Eric Trujillo: and#8220;It’s just part of the local life. and#8220;It’s a small town with few roads.and#8221;

South Lake Tahoe resident Scott Bledsoe said people need to realize that tourism is a source of income and some of the headaches come with the territory.

and#8220;It’s the nature of the beast,and#8221; he said. and#8220;Summer is a little crazy in South Lake, but when the fall rolls around there’s nobody here and that’s when the residents pretty much have the lake to themselves.and#8221;

Bledsoe said it’s important to learn the patterns of the tourist season and adjust. He also acknowledges the business he works for is dependent on the influx of tourists.

and#8220;During the summer, my hours go up, which is great,and#8221; he said. and#8220;When the tourists leave, my hours get cut.and#8221;

Souza agreed.

and#8220;Tourism provides us with jobs, so we can’t be frustrated by it,and#8221; she said.

Others interviewed expressed appreciation for the opportunity to live in a place where a diverse array of people from diverse places and backgrounds gather.

and#8220;I think it’s awesome to hang out with people from different places,and#8221; said Jeannette Kranick, of South Lake Tahoe. and#8220;Obviously, it depends on the tourist, but I have hung out with some pretty cool people that were vacationing up here.and#8221;

Support Local Journalism


Support Local Journalism

Readers around Lake Tahoe, Truckee, and beyond make the Sierra Sun's work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.

For tax deductible donations, click here.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User