Mountain Times: Out and about enjoying the summer | SierraSun.com

Mountain Times: Out and about enjoying the summer

Norm and Alan NichollsSpecial to the Sun

TAHOE/TRUCKEE andamp;#8212; On August 4, I had an acupuncture appointment in Incline Village, and instead of returning to Truckee via Highway 267, I decided to drive around the North Shore of Lake Tahoe and home via Highway 89 past Alpine and Squaw.It was great to see how much more water is in Lake Tahoe this year. Although the size of beaches has really diminished, piers are actually back in the water and people are able to use them for their boats, sun and enjoyment.According to the posted information at the dam by Fanny Bridge, the depth of the lake is approximately 4 feet higher than this time last year. The outflow, however, was less than half of what it was on the same day last year and there were few signs of rafters andamp;#8220;walkingandamp;#8221; their rafts down the Truckee River toward River Ranch. The following Sunday, Alice and I did our andamp;#8220;cocktail runandamp;#8221; on the Truckee River bike trail between Squaw Valley and andamp;#8220;The Bridgetenderandamp;#8221; and return. We call it the cocktail run, since we always stop at the Bridgetender for a drink or two and some deep fried onion rings. Yes, it kind of defeats the purpose of the exercise but what fun and the scenery along the bike path is gorgeous.That morning the water masters had opened up a second gate in the dam and the increase of flow was enough to get the raft companies at the andamp;#8220;Wyeandamp;#8221; back in business, and the rafters were out in numbers! There was still some walking involved (especially by rafters who had their ice chests full of beer), but everyone seemed to be having a lot of fun.This yearandamp;#8217;s lake level is the highest since 2006 and has made it to within a foot of the maximum allowed by the federal government. (The Feds seem to have their finger into everything, donandamp;#8217;t they?). Anyway the lake looks great!Last week I attended andamp;#8220;Good Morning Truckeeandamp;#8221; sponsored by the Truckee Donner Chamber of Commerce. The featured speaker was news anchor Dierdre Fitzpatrick of KCRA 3 News of Sacramento. She was a delightful speaker and shared a few of her experiences at the news desk of Channel 3 and other experiences covering several Olympic Games for KCRA and NBC affiliates. She has been with KCRA for 13 years.Dierdre really seems to love what she does and likes doing the morning news even though her day begins at 2:30 a.m. She, her husband, and their little boy have a cabin up here and they love spending as much time as they can here. Her crazy schedule allows for this, and she doesnandamp;#8217;t have any plans on giving up the morning spot anytime soon.Prior to cable news networks, I received nearly all my news by watching Channel 3 News. It was, and apparently still is, the number one watched local news program in the Central Valley and Northern California. In the 60s and 70s, KCRA really connected with the communities in the Sierra and the up-and-coming craze of alpine skiing. In those years, weather forecasting and reporting became big, and KCRAandamp;#8217;s Harry Geise was considered the foremost weather man for the area. He became andamp;#8220;the manandamp;#8221; to listen to prior to heading up into the Sierra.Coming up … six riders are to bicycle 300 miles from Truckee through Nevada City, Grass Valley, Sacramento and back, September 17-18. andamp;#8220;The 300 Miles for Mentoringandamp;#8221; ride is a fundraiser to support andamp;#8220;Big Brothers and Big Sisterandamp;#8217;sandamp;#8221; local mentoring programs.According to rider and ride organizer, Hardy Bullock, andamp;#8220;I feel a deep connection to kids who need guidance and support. I feel that as a community we can affect their lives in a positive way now and create a better society in the long run.andamp;#8221; Other riders will include Carey Thrasher, Ken Bossung, Chris Barry, Scott Hanson and Mark Hockridge. For further information or to make pledges for this worthwhile program call Hardy at 530-913-3061, Peggy Martin at 530-587-7717 or Big Brothers Big Sistersandamp;#8217; representative Paul Raymore at 530-426-2691. What a great cause!Norm and Alan Nicholls of the Nicholls Real Estate Group are affiliated with Dickson Realty at 11500 Donner Pass Rd. in Truckee.