The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) is advising motorists that thousands of bicyclists will be sharing the highways all around Lake Tahoe during Sunday's annual "America's Most Beautiful Bike Ride," a 72-mile ride around the lake.
Northbound State Highway 89 in Emerald Bay from Spring Creek Road to Vikingsholm Vista Point will be closed to through traffic from 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. during the event. The southbound lane will remain open.
There are no other planned highway closures for the ride, but motorists should be prepared to share the road with bicyclists on U.S. Highway 50 in South Lake Tahoe, Highway 89 leaving South Lake Tahoe and along the West Shore, up to Truckee and back (for 100-mile riders), and on Highway 28 from Tahoe City around to the East Shore on the Nevada side, where riders will connect back with Highway 50 and ride back down to the South Shore.
Riders will start and finish at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on Highway 50 in Stateline with staggered starts beginning at 6 a.m., with the final riders expected to finish around 5:30 p.m. Event organizer Curtis Fong said he expects more than 3,300 riders for the 25th annual event.
Bicyclists will be instructed to travel in single file and motorists are reminded to obey the 3-foot buffer law when passing riders. Highway electronic message boards all around and entering Lake Tahoe will be activated alerting motorists to the increased bicycle traffic on the highways.
With temperatures expected to reach or exceed 100 degrees in the valley, Fong said he expects more visitors to Lake Tahoe than normal for the weekend, making it even more important that motorists be alert and avoid distracted driving.
For real-time traffic information, use Caltrans’ QuickMap tool at http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov/ or http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov/mindex.html for mobile users.