Adjacent to Emerald Bay State Park, this park includes some 6 kilometers (4 miles) of Lake Tahoe shoreline. Much of the park is a yellow pine - red fir forest. Trees present include ponderosa (yellow) pine, Pinus ponderosa, Jeffrey pine, Pinus jeffreyi, sugar pine, Pinus lambertiana, lodgepole pine, Pinus murrayana, incense cedar, Calocedrus decurrens, white fir, Abies concolor, and red fir, Abies magnifica. Stunted, almost dwarfed Pinus ponderosa and Pinus lambertiana may be seen growing in some of the cracks in the granitic rock.
The understory is composed of bush chinquapin, Chrysolepis sempervirens, and huckleberry oak, Quercus vaccinifolia, among others. Along Rubicon Creek black cottonwood, Populus trichocarpa, quaking aspen, Populus tremuloides, and willow, Salix sp., are found. The rare Tahoe Basin endemic Rorippa subumbellata is found in the park.
Though various birds may be seen, animal life is not particularly conspicuous.
Most of the area is composed of granite or granite-derived soils, though granodiorite is found at Rubicon Point and some hornblende gabbro and related rocks are found in the park. All of the rocks date to the Mesozoic or earlier.
Integrity: Developed as a State Park, with roads, campsites, etc., much of the area is relatively undisturbed. Evidence of logging in the late 1800's and early 1900's, particularly along the shoreline, is still visible. Highway 89 bisects the area.
Use: Educational, observational, light recreation.
Inventory of California Natural Areas
Revision © 2008 Steven Louis Hartman