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Lake Tahoe Facts and Figures

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Lake Tahoe Facts and Figures
July 26, 1997

Lake Tahoe is nestled in the Sierra Nevada Mountains at an elevation of 6,225 feet, 22 mileslong and 12 miles wide. It is the largest alpine lake in North America with a 105,000-acresurface. It holds 39 trillion gallons of water. It is 1,645 feet deep.

  • 63 tributaries drain into the lake. The Truckee River is the only outlet.

  • Every 24 hours the lake level drops one tenth of an inch due to the evaporation of1,400,000 gallons of water a daily supply for 3.5 million people.

  • The average snowfall is 500 inches at alpine skiing elevations up to 11,000 feet.

  • The Lake Tahoe Basin is 205,000 acres in size, falling in both California and Nevada.

  • 5 million people live with 4 hours drive; visitation is estimated at 3.5 million per year.

  • The Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit was established in 1973 to manage land from threenational forests the Tahoe, Eldorado, and Toiyabe within the Basin. 77 percent of theBasin is in national forest, 16 percent is in private ownership and 7 is state land.

  • State lands include five state parks and lands administered by the California TahoeConservancy and the Nevada State Lands Commission.

  • In 1996, the national forests generated $1,112,800 in recreation receipts and $139,000 intimber receipts to the government.

  • The Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit manages 945 campsites on federal land and workswith seven privately-operated full service resorts at least partially on federal land.

  • Water clarity is diminishing at a rate of one foot each year. In 1968 a 10-inch whitedinner plate could be seen from a depth of 105 feet; in 1997 it could be seen at 70 feet.

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