Fallen Leaf Lake is a noble body of water, three and a half miles long and about one mile across. Why it is called Fallen Leaf is fully explained in the chapter on Indian Legends. Some people have thought it was named from its shape, but this cannot be, for, from the summit of Mt. Tallac, every one instantly notices its resemblance to the imprint of a human foot. It is shaped more like a cork-sole, as if cut out of the solid rock, filled up with a rich indigo-blue fluid, and then made extra beautiful and secluded with a rich tree and plant growth on every slope that surrounds it.

The color of the water is as richly blue as is Tahoe itself, and there is the same suggestion of an emerald ring around it, as in the larger Lake, though this ring is neither so wide nor so highly colored.

In elevation it is some 80 feet above Lake Tahoe, thus giving it an altitude of 6300 feet.

At the upper end, near Fallen Leaf Lodge, under the cliffs it has a depth of over 380 feet, but it becomes much shallower at the northern or lower end near the outlet. Its surroundings are majestic and enthralling as well as picturesque and alluring. On the west Mt. Tallac towers its nearly 10,000 feet into the sea of the upper air, flanked on the south by the lesser noble and majestic Cathedral Peak. In the earlier part of the season when these are covered with snow, the pure white materially enhances the splendor of both mountain and lake by enriching their varied colorings with the marked contrast.

To the southwest rise the Angora Peaks, and these likewise catch, and hold the winter's snow, often, like Mt. Tallac, retaining beds of neve from year to year.

To the geological student, especially one interested in glacial phenomena, the lateral and terminal moraines of Fallen Leaf Lake are of marked and unusual interest. The moraine on the east is upwards of 1000 feet high, and is a majestic ridge, clothed from the lake shore to its summit with a rich growth of pines, firs and hemlocks. Its great height and bulk will suggest to the thoughtful reader the questions as to how it was formed, and whence came all the material of its manufacture. It extends nearly the whole length of the lake, diminishing somewhat in size at the northern end. There is a corresponding moraine on the western side not less compelling in its interest though scarcely as large in size as its eastern counterpart. The terminal moraine, which is the one that closed up the lake, separating and raising it above the level of Lake Tahoe, is a less noble mound, yet geologically it allures the mind and demands study as much as the others. In Chapter VIII, Dr. Joseph LeConte's theories are given in full explaining the various glacial phenomena connected with this lake.

The fish of Fallen Leaf are practically the same as those of Tahoe, though rod and fly fishing is more indulged in here.

Boating, canoeing and the use of the motor boat are daily recreations, and swimming is regularly indulged in during the summer season.


The distinguishing characteristics of this resort are simplicity, home-likeness, unostentation. It makes its appeal especially to the thoughtful and the studious, the not luxuriously rich, those who love Nature rather than the elegance of a first-class hotel, and who desire to climb trails, study trees, hunt, fish, and generally recreate out-of-doors rather than dress and fare sumptuously.

It is situated on the southwestern edge of Fallen Leaf Lake, five miles from Tallac, reached by a road that winds through the trees of the Baldwin estate, and then skirts the eastern and southern shores of the Lake. Stages - horse and automobile - run daily during the season and meet all the steamers at Tallac.

The "Lodge" consists of a number of detached buildings, conveniently and picturesquely scattered among the pines on the slopes and at the edge of the lake. There are dining hall, social hall, post office, store, electric power-house, boat-house, with stables far enough away to be sanitary, and cottages and tents located in every suitable nook that can be found. There are one, two or three-roomed cottages, tents, single and double, all in genuine camp style. There is no elegance or luxury, though most of the cottages have modern toilets, porcelain bath-tubs with running hot and cold water. Electric lights are everywhere.

The camp has been in existence now (1915) for seven years and each year has seen considerable enlargement and improvement, until now Fallen Leaf Lodge in the heart of the summer season is an active, busy, happy and home-like community.

The table is wholesome, substantial and appetizing. There is no pretense at elaborateness. Home-cooking, well served, of simple and healthful dishes, in reasonable variety, is all that is offered.

Needless to say there is no bar or saloon, though there is no attempt to compel a personal standpoint on the liquor question upon those who are accustomed to the use of alcoholic liquors at meals.

In its natural beauties and advantages Fallen Leaf Lodge claims - and with strong justification - one of the very best of locations. Fallen Leaf Lake is large enough to give scope to all the motor-boats, row-boats, canoes and launches that are likely to be brought to it for the next hundred years, and ten thousand fishermen could successfully angle upon its bosom or along its shores. For millions of Tahoe trout, rainbow, Eastern brook, Loch Levin, Mackinac and German brown have been put into this and nearby lakes in the last few years. While some jerk-line fishing is indulged in, this lake, unlike Lake Tahoe, affords constant recreation for the more sportsmanlike fly-fishing.

Another of the special advantages of Fallen Leaf Lodge is its possession of a fine log-house and camp on the shore of Lake of the Woods, five miles away, in Desolation Valley. To those who wish to fish in greater solitude, to climb the peaks of the Crystal Range, or boat over the many and various lakes of Desolation Valley this is a great convenience.

Nothing can surpass the calm grandeur of the setting of this glorious beautiful water. Lying at the lower edge of Desolation Valley and facing stupendous mountains, the picture it presents, with Pyramid Peak reflected in its gorgeously lit-up sunset waters, is one that will forever linger in the memory.

The close proximity of Fallen Leaf Lodge to Mt. Tallac, Cathedral Peak, the Angora Peaks, Mounts Jack, Dick, and Richardson, Ralston Peak, Keith's Dome, Maggie's Peaks, Tell's Peak, with the towering peaks of the Crystal Range - Pyramid and Agassiz - to the west, and Freel's, Job's and Job's Sister to the southeast, afford an abundance and variety of mountain-climbing that are seldom found in any region, however favored.

But in addition to the peaks there are Sierran lakes galore, rich in unusual beauty and picturesqueness, and most of them stocked with trout that compel the exertion of the angler's skill, as much as tickle the palate of the uncorrupted epicure. Close by are Cascade, Cathedral, Floating Island, Echo, Heather, Lucile, Margery, Gilmore, Le Conte, Lily, Susie, Tamarack, Grouse, Lake of the Woods, Avalanche, Pit, Crystal, Pyramid, Half Moon, with the marvelous and alluring maze of lakes, bays, straits, channels, inlets and "blind alleys" of the Lake Olney of the ever-fascinating Desolation Valley. And those I have named are all within comparatively easy walking distance to the ordinarily healthful and vigorous man or woman. For those who seek more strenuous exercise, or desire horse-back or camping-out trips another twenty, aye fifty lakes, within a radius of fifty miles may be found, with their connecting creeks, streams and rivers where gamey trout abound, and where flowers, shrubs and trees in never-ceasing variety and charm tempt the botanist and nature-lover.

While to some it may not be an attraction, to others there may be both pleasure and interest in witnessing the operations of the Fallen Leaf sawmill. This is situated on the western side of the lake, and is a scene of activity and bustle when logging and lumbering are in progress. On the hills about the lake the "fellers" may be found, chopping their way into the hearts of the forest monarchs of pine, fir and cedar, and then inserting the saw, whose biting teeth soon cut from rim to rim and cause the crashing downfall of trees that have stood for centuries. Denuded of their limbs these are then sawn into appropriate lengths, "snaked" by chains pulled by powerful horses to the "chute", down which they are shot into the lake, from whence they are easily towed to the mill. The chute consists of felled logs, laid side by side, evenly and regularly, so as to form a continuous trough. This is greased, so that when the heavy logs are placed therein they slide of their own weight, where there is a declivity, and are easily dragged or propelled on the level ground.

I use the word propelled to suggest the interesting method used in these chutes. Sometimes ten or a dozen logs will be placed, following each other, a few feet apart, on the trough (the chute). A chain is fastened to the rear end of the hindermost log. This chain is attached to a single-tree fastened to a horse's harness. The horse is started. This makes the hinder log strike the next one, this bumps into the third and gives it a start, in its turn it bumps the fourth, the fourth the fifth, and so on, until the whole dozen are in motion. Had the string of logs been fastened together, the horse would have found it impossible to move them, but "propelling" them in this fashion they are all set in motion, and their inertia once overcome there is no difficulty experienced in keeping them going.

The views from Fallen Leaf Lodge are varied and beautiful, one in particular being especially enchanting. Over the Terminal moraine, across the hidden face of Lake Tahoe, the eye falls upon the mountains in Nevada, on the far-away eastern side. In the soft light of evening they look like fairy mountains, not real rocky masses of gigantic, rugged substance, but something painted upon the horizon with delicate fingers, and in tints and shades to correspond, for they look tenderer and sweeter, gentler and lovelier than anything man could conceive or execute.

The owner of Fallen Leaf Lodge is Professor William W. Price, a graduate of Stanford University, who first came into this region to study and catch special Sierran birds and other fauna for the Smithsonian Institution, the American Museum of Natural History, and the British Museum. Later, when he founded the Agassiz school for boys, at Auburn, California, he established Camp Agassiz near Fallen Leaf Lake, in a grove of pines, firs, and cedars. Assisted by other university men he made of this an ideal open-air school and camp for boys. They were taught such practical things as to take care of themselves in the mountains, find a trail, or go to a given spot without a trail, fish, hunt, make camp, build fires in a rain-storm, find proper shelter during a lightning-storm, carry a pack, pack a mule or burro, even to the throwing of the "diamond hitch," the "squaw hitch," and the "square" or other packer's especial "knots" and "ties". They were induced to climb mountains, row, swim, "ski", and snow-slide, and all were taught to recognize at sight the common birds, smaller wild animals, trees, and flowers. Frequent camping-out trips were arranged for, and the youngsters thus gained health, vigor and permanent strength while doing what they all enjoyed doing.

In due time the parents wished to share the fun, joy, and out-of-door experiences of their youngsters; then the friends, and those who heard about them, and out of the numerous requests for accommodations Fallen Leaf Lodge was born. For a time Mr. Price tried an ordinary hotel manager, but the peculiar and individualistic needs of his peculiar and individualistic camp at length led Mrs. Price and himself to take the complete control. From that time its success has been continuous.

Mr. Price is a scientific expert upon the flora (especially the trees), the birds and the four-footed fauna of the whole region, and his readiness and willingness to communicate his knowledge to his guests is a great advantage to the studious and inquiring.

Owing to the demands made upon his time by the management of Fallen Leaf Lodge Mr. Price has transferred his school into other hands, and has given up the Boys' Camp, though the lads are still welcome, with their parents, as regular guests at the Lodge.

It should be noted that Fallen Leaf Lodge is but two miles from Glen Alpine Springs and that all that is said of the close proximity of the most interesting features of the southern end of the Lake Tahoe region to Glen Alpine, applies with equal force (plus the two miles) to Fallen Leaf Lodge.


One of the newest of the Tahoe region resorts is that of Cathedral Park, located on the western side of Fallen Leaf Lake. It was opened in the latter part of the season of 1912 by Carl Fluegge. Everything about it is new, from the flooring of the tents to the fine dining-room, cottages and stables. A special road has been constructed on the west side of the lake, over which Cathedral Park stages run daily the three and a half miles, to meet every steamer during the season at Tallac.

Rising directly from the edge of the lake, surrounded by majestic trees, protected by the gigantic height of Mt. Tallac (9785 feet) from the western winds, a clear open view of Fallen Leaf Lake and the thousand-feet high lateral moraine on the eastern side is obtained; there could be no better location for such a resort.

The distinctive features of Cathedral Park are simplicity and home-comforts, with special advantages for hunting, fishing and camping out. For ten years Mr. Fluegge has taken out some of the most distinguished patrons of the Tahoe region in his capacity as expert guide and huntsman. He knows every trail thoroughly and has scaled every mountain of the surrounding country. He knows the habits and haunts of bear, deer, and other game, and is a successful hunter of them, as well as of grouse and quail. His office and social-hall bear practical evidence of his prowess and skill in the mounted heads of deer, and the dressed skins of bear that he has shot. He is also an expert angler, and well acquainted with the best fishing in Granite, Eagle, the Rock-Bound, Gilmore and other lakes, as well as those closer at hand. There are twelve such lakes within easy reach of Cathedral Park. Fishing and hunting are his hobbies and delights, hence he makes a thoroughly competent, because interested, and interesting guide. Nothing pleases him more than to get out with his guests and assist them in their angling and hunting. To aid in this he has established his own permanent camp at the beautiful Angora Lakes, four miles from Cathedral Park, which is placed freely at the disposal of his guests.

Especial arrangements are made for the perfect and satisfactory accommodation of guests who desire to sleep out of doors. Tents, sleeping porches and platforms are arranged with a view to the strictest privacy, and those who desire this healthful open-air mode of life can nowhere be better accommodated than here. As Mark Twain has said, it is the "open air" sleeping in the Lake Tahoe region that is so beneficial. Again to quote him: "The air up there in the clouds is very pure and fine, bracing and delicious. And why shouldn't it be? - it is the same the angels breathe. I think that hardly any amount of fatigue can be gathered together that a man cannot sleep off in one night here. Not under a roof, but under the sky." Therefore Cathedral Park says to those who wish to breathe the same air as the angels while they are yet on the earth: Come to us and we will meet your reasonable wishes in every possible way.

The presence of Mrs. Fluegge, who is associated with her husband in the management, guarantees to ladies, whether unaccompanied, or with their families, the best of care, and the former are especially invited to come and test the homelike qualities of the place.

The water supply of Cathedral Park is gained from its own springs, on the mountain side above the resort. It is piped down to every tent or cottage and the supply is superabundant. Fish are caught almost daily on the landing in front of the hotel. Fallen Leaf is an ideal spot for rowing, canoeing, and launch rides, and the hotel owns its own launch in which parties are regularly taken around the lake. During the summer season bathing is as delightful here as in any of the seaside resorts of the Atlantic and Pacific, and almost every one takes a plunge daily.

A camp-fire is built every night, where singing, storytelling, and open air amusements of an impromptu nature are indulged in to one's heart's content, though visitors are all expected to remember the rights of others and not keep too late hours.

Informal dances are indulged in occasionally and everything is done to promote the comfort, pleasure and enjoyment of the guests that earnest desire, constant watchfulness and long experience can suggest.

The table is simple and homelike, but abundant, well-served and satisfactory. This department is entirely under the control of Mrs. Fluegge, who never employs any other than white help in the kitchen. Fresh fruit and vegetables, lake trout and game in season, fresh milk and cream, with everything of the best that the markets afford, are none too good for the guests at Cathedral Park.

Unlike most of the Lake Tahoe resorts, it keeps open throughout the whole year, and is managed with but one idea, viz., to give absolute and complete satisfaction to all its guests.

Its rates are reasonable, and especial prices are given to children under ten years of age and to families who wish to stay for any length of time.

The short trail to Mount Tallac rises directly from Cathedral Park, and all that has been said of the close proximity of Glen Alpine and Fallen Leaf Lodge to the most interesting peaks, lakes, etc., of the Tahoe region applies with equal force to Cathedral Park, plus the short additional distance, which is something less than a mile.

Mr. Fluegge will be glad to correspond with those contemplating a visit to Cathedral Park, especially should they desire his services for hunting, fishing, or camping-out trips of a few days or a month's duration. The address is Cathedral Park, Tallac P.O., Lake Tahoe, California.