Monthly Archives: October 2012
After the excess of Burning Man, we were ready for a few days rest before ending our holiday in San Francisco, so we stayed two nights at the gorgeous Lake Tahoe, home of our third and final naked adventure.
We stayed at Zephyr Cove RV Campground in South Lake Tahoe. It is a lovely spot, just across the road from the lake itself, with good shower/toilet facilities. We did feel a little under-equiped as we parked up alongside 35 foot RVs (especially one covered in Playa Dust!). At using the showers, we had a meal in the restaurant next to the campground before falling asleep listening out for bears in the woods!
After a good nights sleep (we were so, so tired!), it was time to check out the local nudist beach.
Secret Cove, Lake Tahoe
I’d spent a bit of time researching where the exact location of this beach is but too be honest none could help me locate the exact spot. I think that the name of the cove changes depending on which website you read (some call it Secret Beach, some Secret Cove, some Paradise Cove, etc). What I can say is that it is definitely called Secret Cove and it is gorgeous!
In terms of directions, we took the Interstate 50 north from Zephyr Cove, then turned north up the Interstate 28 towards North Lake Tahoe. About 5km along this road, you’ll come to a line a cars parked on the left hand side before arriving at Chimney Beach Parking Lot on the left (with a small overspill on the right). I knew that Chimney Beach was too far north, so we turned round here and parked up with the others cars that we had just past. Here we spotted a path going down towards the Lake. Taking a right (North) we picked a more well-trodden path and soon came across a sign for Secret Cove.
After following the path for a further 10 minutes or so we were greeted by the view of the cove. I don’t think that the pictures can do it justice – it is amazing. Crystal-clear waters, soft sand/shingle beach, pine trees – everything about this place was picturesque.
The actual beach is quite small, meaning that the 50 or so people there are quite close together. Some may find this a bit uncomfortable – especially given American’s way of constantly talking to you – it certainly was different to the more quieter beaches we’ve experienced in Portugal and Spain.
There was a good mix of people on the beach – mostly couples and families, some older single men, people relaxing after Burning Man, small group of gay men (located further south along the beach) as well as a small group of young girls (who seemed to be trying naturism for the first-time. They actually commented that this was their Burning Man – if only they knew!). Everyone was really friendly – we were offered some melon from a fellow beach goer.
The water was really refreshing, given the heat of the mid-day sun and it was really nice not to feel all salty after you normally feel after a day at the beach.
I think this is my favourite beach I’ve ever been to – certainly a 10/10.
If any of you have been here, we’d love to hear from you!
At seeing the sights of LA, it was time to catch a plane, pick up the camper and head into the desert. For our second naked adventure was at Black Rock City, or the Burning Man Festival as you may know it.
Arriving late at night (longer than we thought, stopped for speeding), we collected our tickets and headed to the entrance. Here we were greeted by the Burning Man ‘greeters’ – volunteers who welcome ‘people home’. Ours had a spaceman helmet on. As with tradition, all virgins are asked to roll in the dust and ring the virgin bell. What have we let ourselves in for?!!
After finding a suitable space to park up, we loaded up our rucksacks with alcohol and headed out onto the Playa. At night, Burning Man is a serious head-fuck. As far as the eye can see, there was neon lights, soundsystems, fire and art installations. We spent some time at the Thunder Dome trying to take it all in, before retiring for our first night in the desert.
After a good night sleep, we woke to a blazing sun and the sound of techno. After a bit of breakfast and we went for a walk to see what BM had to offer during the day.
I had read that there is a relaxed approach to nudity at BM, with a number of naked activities including:
* Naked Zorbing
* Body Painting
* Party Naked Tiki Bar
* Critical Tits (and Dicks) Bike Ride
However, I have to say that there was not as much nudity as I thought there would be. Whenever we went to the Party Naked Tiki Bar, there was only a handful of people there and all were clothed. We didn’t see any Naked Zorbing or any Body Painting either (I believe that the Bike Ride took place earlier in the week).
Most nudity seemed to occur during the morning as people got up, washed/showered, used the portaloos. People seemed comfortable being naked around their camps at the start of the day, but as it got later it seemed that nudity ended. There was however, small numbers of people sitting around naked by their camps throughout the day, and a few couples walking around naked. Needless to say, I spent most of the daytime sat in our camp, working on getting rid of my tanlines!
I was also looking forward to experiencing the ‘gifting’ economy with which BM works – people contribute to the festival through gifting either time, materials, etc and I had hoped that there would be far more social interaction amongst the festival goers. Despite our best efforts to greet passersby with a nod and wave, the number of people we spoke to as minimal. We kind of felt that most people were in camps made up of a group of friends, and so tended to keep the party to themselves.
I don’t know if this is linked but we had a long chat to one of the artists who build a couple of sculptures on the Playa. He was was in his 10th year but had become increasingly disillusioned with BM and felt that the festival was losing its roots due to an increase in the number of younger teens who were here to drink and take drugs rather than ‘participate’. Given the number of college kids dancing on top of their parents RV’s, I can see where he is coming from.
Overall, I’m glad that I’ve been to BM – it certainly is an awesome place, with incredible art installations and amazing landscapes.
For more information, click here
Apologies for the delay in posting recently, been very busy as well as suffering from post-holiday blues! Having saved up for months and months, me and my amazing wife went on holiday to America. I won’t bore you all with how fantastic it was (it really was fantastic!), instead I’ll focus on the naked adventures we had:
Living Waters Spa, Desert Hot Springs
After checking out Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon we picked up our hire car and drove West towards Los Angeles (via an overnight stop at Living Waters Spa).
When booking the accommodation (email, couple of telephone calls) we were sent our booking confirmation with a note at the bottom that said ‘no check-in after 5.00pm’. At the time of booking we thought nothing of this and it was only as we were still an hour away from our destination (at about 4.30pm) that we thought anything of it.
Surely there would be someone there to let us in?
How can they say no check-in after 5.00pm?
What if you arrive on a late flight?
Arriving at 5.30pm excited at the prospect of enjoying the ‘award winning European-style clothing optional spa’ we were greeted by a locked door. No sign, no note, nothing. Having knocked on every door we could find, we started to panic. The sun was going down and we had nowhere to stay. Fortunately, we found a public payphone at a local supermarket (where, incidentally, they sold the biggest sandwiches I’ve ever seen!) and managed to get hold on a member of staff. After explaining why we were late we arranged to meet back at Living Waters to check in – it felt like being back at school again!
We were shown to our en-suite room (with fridge and microwave) and left to get on with it, before heading back to the supermarket to pick up food for the evening.
Back at the motel and with the food and wine flowing, we were able to relax at this lovely place. The view from the motel is amazing, especially at dusk. There were two other couples booked in but they were both out for the evening so it felt like the whole place was ours – total bliss! Enjoying the pool and hot tub whilst looking up at the stars was an amazing experience I’ll never forget.
After a good nights sleep (the 10 hour round trip to the Grand Canyon really takes it out of you!), we made our way to the breakfast room. A selection of cereals and bagels was available as well as a help-yourself-as-much-as-you-want range of beverages through-out the day.
In the heat of the sun, we sat and read, took leisurely swims, sat in the mineral-fed hot tub and watched a hummingbird feeding from the plants in and around the pool.
I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this place, just remember to turn up on time!
For more information, click here
** Photography is not allowed inside the motel, but I had to sneak a couple for this blog!**