Sunset on the lake

Independence Lake, located about an hour north of Truckee, was named “Best Lake” by Sunset Magazine in its March edition. The honor was part of Sunset’s annual environmental awards, which recognizes organizations and places throughout the west for upholding environmental stewardship.

The article states, “What didn’t happen here [at the lake]: A shoreline jammed with houses, restaurants, and pubs. And motorboats.”

“Why it’s a winner: Independence Lake, a half-hour north of Tahoe in the High Sierra, was formerly owned by NV Energy and once used to produce hydropower. It has nothing on its shores except Jeffrey pines, red firs, and some picnic tables. The Nature Conservancy and the Truckee Donner Land Trust fought off a private buyer to purchase 2,325 lakeside acres for $15 million.”

The lake serves as a fresh water source for Reno and Sparks during drought seasons. According to The Nature Conservancy, it “also harbors one of the world’s last two wild lake populations of Lahontan cutthroat trout.”