North Shore water shuttle service begins June 27

With four lakeside locations linked, a full season of dock hopping awaits thanks to a unique water borne transit service at Lake Tahoe’s north shore. What began as a pilot program last year, the North Lake Tahoe Water Shuttle fires up for its first full season beginning June 27.

Take a break from driving and get on the lake.

Take a break from driving and get on the lake.

The water craft will provide transit service to and from the West Shore Café in Homewood, Tahoe City Marina, Gar Woods Grill & Pier in Carnelian Bay and Captain Jon’s in Tahoe Vista. The idea is to get passengers out of their cars and on the lake for access to restaurants, shopping, bike trails, museums, parks, farmers markets and other recreational activities.

The 30-foot state-of-the-art boat can carry up to 12 passengers and its crew. It allows locals and visitors to travel Lake Tahoe, taking in the sites, while serving as a public transportation option, much like the region’s bus and transfer services.

The boat carries up to eight bicycles allowing passengers to take a ride with their bikes in tow and then, once docked, take them around North Lake Tahoe’s many paths and roads.  At a leisurely pace bike riders can visit museums, retail shops and dine alfresco before ultimately returning to their lakeside water shuttle starting point.

“It’s a completely different vantage point being out in the middle of Lake Tahoe,” said Jan Colyer, executive director of the Truckee/North Tahoe Transportation Management Association. “The mountain ranges and the 72 miles of shoreline are much more distinct. That coupled with a lake visibility of 70-plus feet makes for a unique and spectacular experience.”

Other regional transit services, including buses and shuttles, are available to combine with the water shuttle and avoid parking and traffic hassles. After taking the North Lake Tahoe Water Shuttle, passengers can also take Tahoe Area Regional Transit (TART) the area’s public bus service, for their return. Service will operate June 27 through Sept. 23. For reservations, schedules and more information visit or call 530-581-8707.  

Ticketing kiosks are available at some of the participating docks; seats are limited, so those interested are advised to book ahead.

The program is funded through Placer County TOT/North Lake Tahoe Resort Association and sponsored by the Tahoe Transportation District with TNT-TMA contract management.

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