Darcie Goodman Collins, PhD
Maybe it’s happened to you. You’re on your way to a big day on the mountain, hoping for great snow conditions, only to get stuck in traffic. And you wonder to yourself, is it just me, or is traffic getting worse here? Well, it’s not just you.
According to recent analysis by the Tahoe Transportation District, approximately 24 million people visit Lake Tahoe annually, riding in 9.6 million vehicles. Those are big numbers. For some context, the entire population of Australia just hit 24 million this past February. Lake Tahoe welcomes about the same number of people per year as do the five most popular national parks combined.
All those people are, for the most part, stuck in their cars. This creates ideal conditions for our epic traffic jams. No one comes to Tahoe to sit in traffic, and it’s bad news for Lake Tahoe: traffic-related pollution has become a leading cause of clarity loss.