Friday, September 18, 2009

Soda Springs Lodge



We hiked above Lake Tahoe and Fallen Leaf Lake last Wednesday and came across a very old lodge/camp that had been there since the 1870's. Many of the buildings still exist, kept standing with the help of donors and the Forest Service. It appears that they still use the main building for fundraisers, on occasion. They posted the clothes worn to hike to the lodge from then until now. Women hiked in long skirts. I imagined them walking with their umbrellas, laughing, talking with friends or family. Or straining. It was uphill for a mile:

The clothes worn now are shorts:




What struck me was the fact that high in these mountains there once was a thriving vacation spot for those lucky people wealthy enough to get there from San Francisco, Virginia City, etc. This was one of the outbuildings:


They accessed the area by boat from Tahoe (which couldn't have been easy in itself!) Then by road, then by boat again, walking the last mile to the lodge. There was a hot springs, which Lucy tried out, but there wasn't much left of it:





I'm always amazed at the spots people used to vacation back in the olden days. They really were hearty spirits. You would think life was hard enough without going to such extremes for a little R&R.


Fall is creeping into the mountains:


And the sky is so blue, you could swim in it. On second thought, maybe we humans are drawn by the same things generation after generation. The same desire to experience nature at its finest:

28 comments:

CrazyCris said...

That looks lovely!

I got a laugh at that image of the woman hiker... it reminded of when I lived in Mexico... My parents organised an outing to go to Michoacan to visit the Monarch Butterfly forest which involves hours of hiking on dirt paths through a forest of trees whose boughs are weighed down by the sheer number of butterflies on them (v. impressive!).
Well one of my sister's close friends came with her parents... and we were all shocked when we saw her mom get out of the car! Picture this: designer clothes and high-heel shoes that almost qualified as stilettos! OUCH! Needless to say she didn't last long, ended up spending a couple of hours waiting for us by the cars or some other spot. :p

Brian Miller said...

really beautiful pics nancy. for what i see in those pics. i would go to that extreme.

Delwyn said...

Hi Nancy

It's possible that those early holiday makers did not need to carry any of their gear, but the walking parts would have been slow. They must have felt that they were getting right into the wilderness so far from the cities...they would have needed their gin and tonics on arrival...

your autumn pictures show us why they may have wanted to venture this far...

Happy days

California Girl said...

Photos of White Mountain hikers during Victorian times show the women fully dressed in long skirts, high necked blouses, hats, lace up boots and who knows what all. You are right. They must have been incredibly hearty women to endure the steeps and the rock strewn paths. I would not have been among them!

Sylvia said...

A happy cosy quiet place. I love it. Is there a rabbit hole for me too?

Rain said...

Hi Nancy! I love the photos! OMG, I don't think I could hike in a long skirt, lol! Experiencing nature is quite enlightening, we are the lucky ones! Btw, I love the photo on your side bar, the shadow of the tree!

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

Nancy: It is so true - that humans have always sought out the beautiful spots to relax and replenish. A testament to all that nature offers - and its constancy.

Imagine those poor women suffering from the heat and constriction of those clothes. How they must have weighed them down - and dragged in the dirt!!

luksky said...

Modern comforts and technology have certainly made us lazy. Folks were used to hard work back then, so I'm sure it was no more work to climb the hills than what they were already use to.

"Jo" said...

It's awesome you live in the mountains and get to discover beautiful scenery and old settlements like Soda Spring camp. For me, living in the flat Netherlands, to take a hike like that would mean a one week holiday at least, and then I'd probably end up somewhere in Eastern Europe. *Sigh* Keep us updated on your hikes, with pics and everything, they're awesome. :)

Jill of All Trades said...

Beautiful pictures. I'm so ready for fall. I can't imagine hiking in the full clothes stuff but it was the way it was.

Marguerite said...

Kinda makes you wonder why they dressed that way for a hike. Beautiful scenery and photos! You must be really getting into shape with all of the hiking that you've been doing. Have a great weekend!

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Wonderful photos! I can't see anyone climbing or hiking in that woman's clothing! Maybe people back then were carted up to the lodge?

Erika C. said...

Wonderful photos! It looks like you had a great time. I love that blue, blue sky. We have one here in Connecticut too but I think it's not the same as where you are.

Reya Mellicker said...

Wow, this is so cool! I've never seen it so how great to have the story and pictures, too.

People used to be much stronger and more hearty. We're weak these days, due to all our modern conveniences. Kind of blows my mind.

DJan said...

Great shots, Nancy. One reason women dressed like that is because if they showed as much as an ankle, men were not responsible for what they might do. Much, I guess, like men in Middle Eastern countries now, who require their women to be covered up because they might incite men to reckless acts. Now it seems ludicrous, at least in our part of the world. Thanks for the great pictures, I really enjoyed the tour!

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Absolutely beautiful photos!!! That blue...I could just sink into it!!! How lovely it is in your mountains!!! Thanks for letting us join you for your wonderful hike!! I always know I'll find something special when I visit!!! ~Janine XO

GYPSYWOMAN said...

oh, man! your post reminds me of all the old cabins we used to come across trekking around colorado wyoming utah and parts thereof - wonderful post - but oh so happy not to be imprisoned by the feminine wearing apparel of yesteryear! neat post, lady!

Pat said...

I don't know - I sweat in my shorts, top, and undergarments! Do they have nudists hiking clubs? LOL!

Beautiful pictures - nothing like seeing fall paint the leaves.

Brenda Susan said...

Great photos! And with thos clothes, no wonder the ladies did a lot of swooning!

The Good Cook said...

Sounds like a great hike. I too was surprised when we were in Montana at Glacier National Park at the old photos of the early vacationers. A ranger explained that the very wealthy left the hot cities in the summer months because that is when TB, dysentery (sp?) and other life threatening diseases developed. Guess the hike was worth it to avoid death!

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

Beautiful hike you took and no wonder that years ago, people wanted to do the same no matter the dress. It is fascinating to transport oneself to another time and imagine the outings people took during a past era! Fall is definitely here!

susan said...

Great pictures of a beautiful area but I think I'd prefer a stroll along a Parisian avenue where there are lots of cafes and patisseries :-)

Wenny said...

Hi Nancy, what a beautiful place. I'm sure the place was even better back then. This makes me even more excited over my hill trekking tomorrow ... "Apek Hill, directly translated, it's 'old man hill'.

Barry said...

Maybe we are. And sometimes things seem better if we've had to work a little to achieve them.

Ruth said...

It must have been like heaven to hike up there. I know what you mean about blue sky in places like that. And the night sky up that high is so amazing too.

My great grandparents were some of those hikers back in the day. I am guessing they might have gone to Soda Springs Lodge, because they loved the remote mountains of the world - climbed the Himalayas too. Wish I could have met them, Arthur & Carrie.

Paula said...

Sounds like a great hike. And the sky so very blue - to just jump in.

TheChicGeek said...

I have hiked this trail many times. Great post! I love the Aspen trees at Soda Springs on the trail to Fallen Leaf Lake...so beautiful!

You are so lucky to live in Tahoe! It is probably one of my favorite places on earth. I love Emerald Bay...that's where we always hang out :D

Phoebe Miriah Kirby said...

I can't imagine putting on a corset every morning! I have a hard enough time in spaghetti straps. :)
I think we are drawn to the purity in nature. I know I am...

I hope Josh and I are stationed in North Carolina so we can go on nature hikes.