Vogue magazine recently published a great article that is worth sharing. See the original.
It’s no secret that the Bay Area’s real estate market is out of control, and also that remote work has become more and more prevalent across the country (it’s now estimated that nearly half of all Americans spend at least some time working remotely). So as San Francisco’s young creatives and rising tech stars start to seek better work/life balance, not to mention better real estate prices, the Sierra Nevada mountain towns just three hours east suddenly have a renewed appeal. Truckee, in particular, has attracted a fresh crop of remote workers, meaning that this mountain town is no longer a sleepy, ski-resort-adjacent afterthought. There is a food scene, a creative community, and a historic downtown perfect for long, lazy rambles—in addition to all those other mountain thrills that have brought visitors to this region for decades.
What to Do
In the winter, Truckee is a consummate ski town, located just 15 minutes or so from Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, Sugar Bowl and Northstar California resorts. There are also extensive cross-country, snowshoeing and backcountry opportunities in the region, and the groomed and tracked trails at both Royal Gorge and Tahoe Donner Cross Country Center are a great place to start for novices. There is also an adorable outdoor ice skating rink right in town. Come summertime, hike and explore the historic train tunnels at Donner Summit, or get lost hiking or biking the miles of paved paths and trails that zig-zag in and around the town. Bike Truckee is located in the heart of town, with easy access to the Truckee River Legacy Trail.
Even if adventurous mountain sports aren’t your jam, Truckee offers plenty else year-round. Most creative paths through Truckee lead to Atelier, where you can learn modern calligraphy, paint in watercolors, knit, make seasonal wreaths, improve your smartphone photography skills, and take all sorts of other unique learning workshops. There is no shortage of artists and artisans in Truckee, and the shopping offerings are accordingly impressive for a town of its size: custom engagement rings and unique jewelry at Lorien Powers; leather goods, ceramics and other objets at Riverside Studios, a collective co-owned by five artists; gifts, crafts and stationery at Bespoke; fine art photography and blown glass at Art Truckee; and rustic-chic home furnishings at High Camp Home.
Mountain lovers and bargain hunters alike will have no trouble filling a couple days in Truckee. But no matter what you end up doing, be sure to make time for a relaxing picnic on one of the public piers overlooking Donner Lake—a smaller, quieter, mostly-locals version of nearby Lake Tahoe.
Where to Stay
The Truckee Hotel, located in the middle of downtown, has welcomed guests since 1873—rooms are clean, but charmingly outdated. On the other end of the spectrum, about 15 minutes away from Truckee, is the Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe, a domestic standard-setter in luxurious mountain resorts, with year-round activity offerings from spas to ski concierges.
Probably the best way to experience Truckee is to rent one of the area’s many vacation homes. Tahoe Luxury Properties has some exceptional listings, many of which are located within homeowners’ associations that have amenities like tennis courts and shuttle services to town and the mountains. If you’re traveling in a group, the price can actually be much more competitive than a traditional hotel.
Where to Eat & Drink
For coffee: Locals recognize newcomer Pacific Crest Coffee Co. as having the best nitro cold brew around—perfect fuel for a day on the slopes, or a strenuous day of retail therapy. It’s co-owned by notable snowboarder Ralph Backstrom and U.S. Ski Team member Travis Ganong. Stick around and you might bump into one or both.
For beer: A proper Truckee après-ski (or après-shop) means stopping by one of the town’s three microbreweries, all of which are equally beloved by locals: FiftyFifty Brewing, Alibi Ale Works, and Truckee Brewing Company.
For breakfast: This is a breakfast town, and even if you aren’t a huge breakfast person, it’s worth indulging. The huevos rancheros at Donner Lake Kitchen and the fluffy overstuffed omelettes at Squeeze Inn are both attractions in their own rights.
For lunch: The lobster rolls and fried clams at Morgan’s Lobster Shack are some of the area’s best. And make sure you get a picnic to go from Full Belly Deli, a cult favorite since it opened in 2007—the Dirka Dirka sandwich is a hulking delight made from corned beef, pastrami, pickles, yellow mustard, Swiss cheese, and jalapeño coleslaw. Come hungry.
For dinner: When you’re in Truckee, all roads lead to Moody’s Bistro, Bar & Beats, a local legend as fun for a hearty all-American dinner as it is for post-dinner drinks and live music on weekends (Paul McCartney has performed there). The homemade pasta and Bay Area-worthy wine list make Pianeta a great spot for date night. And on your last night in town, be sure to make a reservation at Cottonwood, an award-winning restaurant housed in one of the country’s oldest ski lodges perched overlooking downtown Truckee. Go around sunset—that way you can watch twilight fade over the mountains as the town’s twinkling lights turn on one by one.
Plummer, Todd. “Why Bay Area Residents Are Flocking to Truckee, California-And You Should Too.” Vogue, Vogue, 11 Dec. 2018, www.vogue.com/article/why-bay-area-residents-are-flocking-to-truckee-california?fbclid=IwAR01Y2rqGB0kjg0OnTXgrRQM_4QM3bkyJic9QlTf2n1zgSxOVv3ByLf5UXE.